On Wednesday, we learned that the Pittsburgh Pirates are almost certain to trade outfielder Andrew McCutchen before the winter ends. Subsequently, we ranked the Washington Nationals as the team most likely to acquire McCutchen.
If that scenario is to come to fruition, we know which Nationals prospect could serve as the center piece -- 19-year-old outfielder Victor Robles. That information comes via Ken Rosenthal:
Robles, who hit .280/.376/.423 across multiple levels in 2016, is considered Washington's best hitting prospect.
MLB.com's write-up of him notes that he is "a potentially special talent who showcases all five tools along with elite athleticism on a daily basis." Robles' hit tool -- his ability to hit for average -- and speed are considered his finest attributes. He also receives high marks for his makeup and aptitude.
That's a high price to pay for McCutchen, who is coming off a career-worst year -- and it's unclear whether the Nationals would do such a deal, given they previously deemed Robles untouchable:
Robles was untouchable in July. Hard to see that changing for two years of McCutchen. https://t.co/wqyk7Opmjv— Chelsea Janes (@chelsea_janes) December 1, 2016
All the same, the Nationals are in a good place to make a splash. That just might mean parting with a future All-Star outfielder to get a current one -- or, at least, whatever remains of a former one.