Yasel Antuna

Position: SS
Level: Class A
Affiliate: Hagerstown Suns
League: South Atlantic League
Born: 10/26/1999 (Age: 24)
Height: 6'0''
Weight: 170
B/T: Both / Right
Acquired: Signed as international free agent, 7/2/2016 (WSH)

Prospect Spotlight

Signed as an international free agent for a hefty $3.9M signing bonus in 2016, Antuna is one of a handful of Nationals prospects from the team’s revamped Dominican program. He’s listed at 6’0’’ and 170 pounds but looks larger than that, with long limbs and developing upper-body strength.

Antuna’s range and actions profile well at shortstop, but he will have to tighten up aspects of his defense to remain at the position long-term. He will get lethargic with his footwork and throw inaccurately across the dirt, routinely slinging two-seamers from a sidearm slot. He has the physical tools to be a solid defender, and projects as an average big league shortstop if he’s able to make adjustments. He would be above-average defensively at any other infield position if he does ultimately move off short. A switch hitter, Antuna has a quick bat through the zone and shows signs of an approach at the plate, advanced for a teenager. He only started hitting right-handed a few years ago and is understandably stronger offensively from the left side of the plate. The lefty stroke shows raw power to the pullside in BP, even though that power is still a year or two away from translating to game action in full-season ball.

Extremely young for the league, Antuna will play the entire 2018 season at just 18-years-old. The statline reflects a player overwhelmed at times by older competition, especially early in the season, but the Nationals have shown confidence in him by letting him work out the woes at the plate. Whether Antuna’s ceiling is that of an impact player or more of an everyday guy depends on whether he sticks at shortstop. The offensive upside is a .260-.275 hitter with average game power on the left side of the infield.