HomeTeamsNationalsNext Nationals Young Star Likely To Break Into The Majors

Next Nationals Young Star Likely To Break Into The Majors

Some fans are questioning why he is not already in a Major League uniform. Others are in awe of his jaw-dropping stats at the level below. The Nationals organization is asking for one thing: patience.

It is just a mere matter of time before the Nationals top prospect (MLB No. 5), James Wood, is called up to the big leagues. Wood, the 6’ 7” 21 year old outfielder, will make a splash whenever his name is added to the big league roster. But the Nationals aren’t rushing the arrival of this young star – instead, they are harping on the importance of development.

“He’s got to develop a little bit,” said Nationals manager Davey Martinez. “He’s young, he’s 21 years old. When he’s here, we want him to be here to stay. He’s going to get here.”

The 2021 second round pick out of IMG Academy and Maryland native was a big trade piece part of the Juan Soto deal that sent him to the Padres. Wood will get a chance to play for the Big League club close to where he grew up, likely sometime in this calendar year. The only question that remains – when?

While that question can’t be solved yet, the numbers he has posted for Rochester, the Nationals Triple A affiliate, in 2024 speak for themself.

To say he has excelled, would be an understatement. So far through 44 games, Wood has garnered a .358 batting average, .465 OBP, .600 slugging percentage, and 1.065 OPS. That has helped earn him MiLB player of the week honors as pitchers haven’t been able to quiet his bat, with him already accumulating multiple multi-homer games early on this season. He has blasted 9 home runs total, putting him on pace to match or beat his 26 home run mark last season and snagged 10 bags, only being thrown out once. 

With the Nationals offense struggling as of late, dropping six of their last seven games, Wood just might be the spark plug that they need. Regardless, the numbers don’t lie – if he can maintain similar stat lines by the end of the season, he will make it hard for the Nationals to not put his name on the 2025 Opening Day roster.

Whenever his name is called, the Nationals hope he will have as electric of an entrance as Pittsburgh Pirates pitcher Paul Skenes.

Anna Laible
Anna Laiblehttps://mlbreport.com/
Anna Laible is a freshman at UNC Chapel Hill majoring in Media and Journalism and minoring in Entrepreneurship and Spanish. Since she was 14 years old, she has been a reporter for Sports Illustrated Kids and has also had the opportunity to write for mlb.com over the past two years as their first and only teenager. When sporting events changed due to COVID-19, she started her own sports podcast, Speak Up Sports, in March of 2021 and has now done 6 seasons. Currently, she is working on expanding her knowledge and skill sets by writing for the school newspaper called "The Daily Tar Heel", publishing twice a week content for Sports Xtra (UNC's sports broadcast for students), and working for GoHeels Productions (which provides the sports broadcasting portions of UNC live sports coverage for the ACC Network and ESPN) as she prepares to cover the Paris Olympics this summer. If you are interested in checking out any of her other work, you can find it all here: https://linktr.ee/annalaible


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