The Washington Nationals optioned 1st baseman/outfielder Tyler Moore to Triple-A Syracuse following their promotion of Chris Marrero. The move comes after a disappointing .158/.206/.480 start to Moore's season and makes sense if the club wants to keep Marrero on the roster.
Patrick Reddington of Federal Ball describes the situation, starting with a memorable moment from the 2012 season:
Moore singled in what ended up being the winning run in Game 1 of the NLDS with St. Louis in his first and only postseason at bat. In the first 37 games and 101 plate appearances this season, however, Moore's struggled, posting a .149/.198/.266 line five doubles and two home runs so far in 2013.
After the Nationals took both ends of a split doubleheader with Minnesota on Sunday, the Nats sent the 26-year-old '08 16th Round pick back to their top affiliate, opting to keep Chris Marrero on the major league roster after calling him up as the 26th Man for the games with the Twins.
In a post-game interview, Nats manager Davey Johnson insisted he has confidence in Moore and that he'd be back soon -- despite wanting to make the move earlier. Adam Kilgore of The Washington Post quotes Johnson:
"He’ll be back soon," Manager Davey Johnson said. "He’s an outstanding player. Just want to kind of get him freshened up, kind of like what we did last year. I wanted to do it earlier and then we had some injuries that prohibited it. But he’s a great talent."
I can never tell whether a little extra time on the farm will help a young player like Moore. Sometimes it works, sometimes it doesn't. And I can never tell whether managers are being sincere when they say they expect a player to figure things out and rejoin the club soon.
In this case, I suspect Johnson is being sincere and I expect Moore to be back later this season. I question whether he'll come back an improved player, though.
What do you think -- will Tyler Moore improve with a little extra time on the farm or have we already seen what we should expect? Comment below.