Nationals introduce their top draft pick
The Nationals' top choice in the June draft, pitcher Lucas Giolito, was relaxed and confident with the media Tuesday before the Nats game with the Mets. Perhaps his polish was to be expected of a player whose parents are in the acting business in Los Angeles.
Father Rick Giolito was in "Who's The Boss?" and "As the World Turns." Mother Lindsay Frost has a long list of TV credits, starting with episodes of "Hill Street Blues" and "L.A. Law," and running through contemporary hits "Lost" and "Boston Legal."
Giolito, a 6-foot-6 right-hander whose fastball has been clocked at 100 mph, signed with the Nats on Friday, just moments before the 5 p.m. deadline. Giolito said a recent visit to Washington helped him decide.
"I got the chance to visit out here a couple weeks ago and meet some of the guys, and see the city," Giolito said. "I think D.C. is one of the best cities I've ever been to. It's unreal being able to see the monuments and being able to meet certain people. It's really cool."
Giolito, who turned 18 on Saturday, also said he visited UCLA, the school that recruited him out of Harvard-Westlake High in North Hollywood, Calif. Giolito, however, said he was excited about the prospect of living away from home.
One of those who have congratulated him since he signed was actor Samuel L. Jackson, a family friend. A few years ago, Jackson presented Giolito with a signed Mace Windu purple lightsaber from his role in the movie series "Star Wars."
Giolito, once considered a potential No. 1 pick in the draft, fell to No. 16 because of concerns about a ligament strain in his elbow in March, which kept him off the mound. Nats general manager Mike Rizzo said that Giolito will report Wednesday to Viera, Fla., and will throw for minor league pitching coordinator Spin Williams and rehab coordinator Steve Gober to determine a rehab timetable.
"We expect him to climb on the mound and pitch some type of competitive baseball sometime this year," Rizzo said. "We're going to take it cautiously because he is an extremely talented young pitcher."