With all the hype over Strasburg, the watchful glances toward Desmond, and looks into 2011 for Bryce Harper, let's not forget that what the Nats have in Ryan Zimmerman. Possibly the best offensive player in the National League, and possibly the best offensive 3rd baseman in baseball.
As it stands now Ryan would have the 5th highest OPS of any hitter in the National League. (with at least 50 at bats) All four of the ones above Ryan, however, are pumped up by ungodly batting averages .393 for Manny, .385 for Andre Ethier, and of course .380 for superstar Ryan Hanigan. Jayson Werth is not as an extreme a case at .345, but he's still a good 50 pts above average. So they should all come back down. Ryan's numbers are based on a high SLG percentage but a batting average that is not out of the ordinary (.319) and could rise to compensate the eventual drop in slugging. (could - it would still be his highest average ever but he's at an age where he should be peaking)
At third base the major league competition boils down to Longoria, Wright, McGehee and Zimm. (Reynolds is what he is - a low average masher. A-Rod is good but on his way down from his great heights) Right now he stands at the head of the class (though admittedly with about 33% fewer at bats). Out of those three only Wright is underperforming in some aspect (BA .279). I'm not saying that Zimmerman will hold off the wunderkind Longoria, but I am saying he can.
The best part about it is that other than Longoria, Ryan is a good 2 years younger than anyone else mentioned in this column. 25 (26 in late September). The Nats have him under contract (quite reasonably) for his best years. This is who the team should be pushing, not Strasburg. (Though Strasburg will be great by all accounts) The Nats have one of the best players in baseball right now playing everyday.