Needham despairs at the state of the Nats’ farm system:
Last season, just about anything that could go wrong, did. Ross Detwiler, the top pitching prospect, threw batting practice at single-A. Chris Marrero, the top hitting prospect, didn’t excel, and his season ended halfway through thanks to a bone-shredding slide into home plate.
Many other Nats prospects struggled, with only Jordan Zimmermann developing to a point where he’s MLB ready.
And those farm system rankings from last year? Well, let’s just say that the Nats won’t be trumpeting them quite as loudly this year.
Baseball America dropped them back down to 21. Baseball Prospectus sees only three impact players in the minors. John Sickels sees only a few guys with much potential. ESPN’s Keith Law — who clearly had Jim Bowden do something nasty to a family member — dropped them all the way to 29th.
The next time you catch me complaining about the Braves’ mediocre and uninspiring play, just punch me in the mouth, because at least my team has had a really good farm system for the past, oh, 20 years, and a good farm system = hope.