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#pounditWednesday, September 22, 2021

Keibert Ruiz, Josiah Gray reportedly headline Nationals’ return in Scherzer trade

Keibert Ruiz

The Washington Nationals are giving up Max Scherzer and Trea Turner in a blockbuster trade, but they are acquiring a pair of top-50 prospects in return.

According to multiple reports, catcher Keibert Ruiz and pitcher Josiah Gray are headlining the package the Nationals will receive from the Los Angeles Dodgers. Ken Rosenthal of The Athletic was the first to report that Ruiz and Gray were in the deal.

Ruiz is regarded as the best prospect in the Dodgers’ system. The No. 41 overall prospect in baseball according to MLB.com’s midseason rankings, the 23-year-old catcher made his MLB debut last season. He has two MLB home runs in just 15 plate appearances, and is hitting an impressive .311 with 16 home runs in Triple-A so far in 2021.

Gray is MLB.com’s No. 42 overall prospect. The 23-year-old has shown impressive strikeout ability in his short MLB stint so far, striking out 13 batters in 8 innings so far at the Major League level. He has been limited in 2021 due to a shoulder injury, but has been widely viewed as a player who could develop into a mid- to upper-rotation starter. Gray was originally acquired in another blockbuster trade the Dodgers made two-and-a-half years ago.

It’s a huge prospect return for Washington, and it would have to be for the Nationals to part ways with both Scherzer and Turner in the same trade. If both develop to their potential, it could certainly pay off for Washington down the line.

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