Non Roster Invitee: Willy Taveras – Nationals

MLB: Cincinnati Reds at Los Angeles DodgersYou may be wondering why I’m not writing about Stephan Strasburg right now so I’ll go ahead and remind you that he’s already on the 40-man roster of the Washington Nationals.

Like in years past the NRI’s of the Washington Nationals are an eclectic mix of veterans who know this team likely serves as their only way of getting back to the majors.

Since I absolutely refuse to write about Livan Hernandez again I’ve choose Willy Taveras as the Nationals non roster invitee.

The Nationals invited three non roster outfielders to camp in Chris Duncan, Jerry Owens and Taveras. While there initally appeared to be no room for any of them in what can only be considered a crowded sardine can of no talent the Nationals went and released Elijah Dukes thus creating an opening.

Duncan has failed to hit and there’s no mistake that Taveras is far preferred over Owens which is obvious by his 13 to 4 at-bat lead.

Taveras has never been able to draw a walk and while that may not have been a huge deal when he was hitting .291, .278, .320 to start his career it’s never a good sign when you fall to .251 and .240 over the last two seasons. Despite all the speed that has seen him steal 193 bases over the last five seasons it’s important to point out that few of his hits have gone for doubles or triples with a total of just 94 going for more then one base. No matter how you spin it averaging just 18.8 extra base hits a season simply is a low number even for a speedster like Taveras.

It’s likely Taveras earns himself a good chunk of playing time this season based on a hot spring, and his ability to look cool on the base paths

. However it doesn’t mean he’s the answer to anything. It just means the Nationals lack a bunch of parts.

Non-Roster Invitees
Pitchers B/T Ht Wt DOB
43 Miguel Batista R/R 6-1 210 02/19/71
68 Victor Garate L/L 6-2 210 09/25/84
61 Livan Hernandez R/R 6-2 245 02/20/75
50 Logan Kensing R/R 6-1 190 07/03/82
52 Joel Peralta R/R 5-11 195 03/23/76
45 Doug Slaten L/L 6-5 215 02/04/80
46 Ryan Speier R/R 6-7 210 07/24/79
58 Drew Storen S/R 6-2 180 08/11/87
Catchers B/T Ht Wt DOB
56 Jamie Burke R/R 6-0 225 09/24/71
62 Derek Norris R/R 6-0 210 02/14/89
Infielders B/T Ht Wt DOB
10 Eric Bruntlett R/R 6-2 200 03/29/78
24 Pete Orr L/R 6-1 195 06/08/79
59 Josh Whitesell L/L 6-3 220 04/14/82
Outfielders B/T Ht Wt DOB
38 Chris Duncan L/R 6-5 230 05/05/81
3 Jerry Owens L/L 6-3 195 02/16/81
29 Willy Taveras R/R 6-0 180 12/25/81