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Hitting coach Schu believes in Espinosa

VIERA, Fla. -- Like many in the Nationals organization, hitting coach Rick Schu believes in second baseman Danny Espinosa and thinks that Espinosa has the tools to become a consistent hitter.

Espinosa is coming off the worst year of his career and spent most of the season at Triple-A Syracuse. Espinosa struck out a combined 148 times in 471 at-bats for the Nats and Chiefs. It didn't help that he was dealing with a right wrist injury all season.

Espinosa will battle Anthony Rendon for the starting second-base job.

"I'm going to talk to Danny to see what he is working on," Schu said. "I hear he had a great winter working out. I know Danny from the Minor Leagues, when I was a hitting coordinator. Great guy, great athlete. The bottom line with him is to make sure he is healthy.

"For me, what I see offensively, he can be the total package. He could be that guy that hits for average. He is a switch-hitter, power from both sides, he is really an exciting guy. He had an off year because of injuries. Playing in the big leagues is tough."

Bill Ladson is a reporter for and writes an MLBlog, All Nats All the time. He also could be found on Twitter @WashingNats.
Read More: Washington Nationals, Danny Espinosa