Originally written November 08, 2012 on The Nats Blog:
Throughout the offseason, The Nats Blog will look back at every player’s 2012 season to summarize and analyze his performance, and we’ll look ahead to his possible role in 2013. We’ll go from #1 Steve Lombardozzi all the way to #63 Henry Rodriguez with about two posts per week until Spring Training. Enjoy. The Nats saw a lot from Danny Espinosa in his 2011 rookie season, and it got many excited for what he would produce throughout his career. He showed great defense, hit for power, and was a Rookie of the Year candidate for the first half of the season. He trailed off in the second half in a drastic way, and he didn't seem to totally recover in 2012 either. While Espinosa increased his batting average by 11 points, his on-base and slugging percentages went down. His home runs went down, too. One thing that didn't struggle, though, was his defense. Espinosa saw his UZR skyrocket from 1.0 in 2011 to 7.1 in 2012. To put that 2012 number in perspective, the only NL second basemen with a higher UZR were Darwin Barney, Mark Ellis, and Brandon Phillips. However, that number is deceptively low. Espinosa played more than 300 innings at shortstop due to Ian Desmond's injury this year, and he amassed a 5.9 UZR there.  Throughout the season though, his biggest issue became one thing: strikeouts. In situations where he just needed to put the bat on the ball, he couldn't seem to do it. He finished the year with an astronomical 189 Ks. Only two players, Adam Dunn and Curtis Granderson, had more in all of baseball, and they both eclipsed the 40 home run mark. Espinosa didn't hit 20 this year. You don't expect much of a bat from your second baseman, traditionally. There are very few second baseman currently in the league that have a significant offensive impact, and Danny Espinosa doesn't need to have one either. His defense is so outstanding, he still has enough value to leave him in. However, the guy hitting seventh or eighth in your lineup can't strike out close to 200 times in a season if you're not hitting 40-50 home runs a season. He absolutely must fix that issue. Next year: I fully  expect Danny Espinosa to be the starting second baseman for the Nats next year. I know some would like to see Steve Lombardozzi in that role, but read my wrap up of Lombo's season to show why Espinosa still has more value to the Nats. And it's not just my opinion. It's math. Next up: #10 Corey Brown
MORE FROM YARDBARKER

Royals beat A's in extras, win first playoff game since '85

Mark Davis: Raiders head coaching job will be 'enticing'

Fan on Craigslist offers Nats playoff tickets for threesome

Brady snubs rookie Garoppolo after touchdown pass

Cung Le suspended for failed HGH test

FCC Chairman: Washington nickname 'inappropriate today'

LIKE WHAT YOU SEE?
GET THE DAILY NEWSLETTER:

Brain study finds 76 of 79 deceased NFL players had CTE

Tony Sparano to step in as Raiders head coach

Eli on Geno Smith: If fans yell at you, you probably deserve it

49ers players come out in support of Jim Harbaugh

Raiders reportedly expected to make a run at Jon Gruden

FCC unanimously ends sports blackout rule

MLB.com posts wrong story saying A's won game

WATCH: Brett Favre in new nose hair trimmer commercial

WATCH: Michigan students protest, call for AD to be fired

Marlins president: We're not trading Giancarlo Stanton

Heckling Knicks fan suing team over ejection

This weekend in NFL stupid

Kobe: Iggy Azalea has had better career than Swaggy P

College football's post-Week 5 playoff projection

Oregon to don pink-themed unis for breast cancer awareness

Is DeMarco Murray the best RB in the NFL?

WATCH: TBS sends up 'Boom Goes the Dynamite' with promo

Ilya Bryzgalov takes photos with fans while on the bench

MLB News
Delivered to your inbox
You'll also receive Yardbarker's daily Top 10, featuring the best sports stories from around the web. Customize your newsletter to get articles on your favorite sports and teams. And the best part? It's free!

WATCH: Brett Favre in new commercial

Brady snubs rookie after TD pass

FCC: Washington nickname 'inappropriate today'

Could Jon Gruden return to Oakland?

Marlins: We're not trading Stanton

Study: 76 of 79 deceased NFL players had CTE

Heckling fan sues Knicks over ejection

Sparano to step in as Raiders head coach

This weekend in NFL stupid

Kobe chooses Iggy over Swaggy P

Is DeMarco Murray the NFL's best RB?

Ilya Bryzgalov takes photos with fans while on the bench

Today's Best Stuff
For Bloggers

Join the Yardbarker Network for more promotion, traffic, and money.

Company Info
Help
What is Yardbarker?

Yardbarker is the largest network of sports blogs and pro athlete blogs on the web. This site is the hub of the Yardbarker Network, where our editors and algorithms curate the best sports content from our network and beyond.