MMO Top 20 Mets Prospects – #11 Cory Mazzoni, RHP
Here we go with the tenth installment of the MMO 2012 Mets Top 20 Prospects list. This pick represents the last one of the bottom half of the Top 20, #11. The player who gets the honor of topping the 11 thru 20 picks, is none other than RHP Cory Mazzoni. The Mets nabbed Mazzoni in the 2nd round of the 2011 draft out of North Carolina State. He was a starter for much of his college career and should remain one in the pro’s, at least for the time being.
In 2011 Mazzoni pitched 114.2 IP as a starter for NC State, over 16 starts. His record was 6-6 with a 3.30 ERA, 91 hits, but what was most noticeable was the 137 strikeouts and 29 walks. After signing his contract with the Mets, he was sent to Brooklyn to begin his professional career, but the Mets were hesitant to have him start, so as not to run up his inning totals, he worked out of the pen. He threw 6 IP for the Cyclones before finishing his year with 7 IP in the FSL. That’s just under 130 IP for the year which the Mets felt was plenty, and it puts him on track for 150 IP next season.
The 22-year-old righty is listed at 6’1″, and 194 lbs., but he still generates a lot of power for someone with that kind of frame. He throws his fastball low to mid-nineties with excellent location, and was topping out in the Cape Cod League last summer at 97. What’s even better is that he can maintain his velocity deep into games. The knock on his fastball is that it is on the straight side, and can be hit. But as he advances through the system hopefully he can learn ways to find some more movement on the pitch, even if it means dialing it back a bit.
He throws three secondary pitches: a very good slider in the 81-84 mph range, a hard-breaking curve-ball with drop (which is somewhat inconsistent, and has a tendency to flatten out), and a splitter. Many scouts have stated they would prefer he throw a conventional change, which the Mets may try and teach him. Although he definitely exhibits the arm-strength to start, he may be better suited for the pen where he could max out with his FB, and then mix in his other offerings to keep the opposition off-balance. Next season will go a long way towards determining the direction for this otherwise polished pitcher.
I have Mazzoni penciled in to start next season in the rotation at high A, St. Lucie, Florida State League. He should team up well with a few other former college hurlers, who were high draft picks last year, and could also start next season in the St. Lucie rotation: Logan Verrett (3rd round), Tyler Pill (4th round), and Jack “The Rocket” Leathersich (5th round). That could make for a pretty interesting mix of talent. Stay tuned.
Check back on Monday when we offer the first of the official MMO 2012 Mets Top 10 Prospects, as we unveil #10
My short list includes:
- Cesar Puello RF
- Juan Lagares LF
- Reese Havens 2B
- Wilmer Flores INF
MMO Top 20 Prospects 11-20
11. Cory Mazzoni RHP
12. Jordany Valdespin INF
13. Darin Gorski LHP
14. Phillip Evans SS
15. Jefry Marte 3B
16. Collin McHugh RHP
17. Juan Urbina LHP
18. Akeel Morris RHP
19. Michael Fulmer RHP
20. Danny Muno INF
About the Author: Peter Shapiro
The first time I went to Shea was not for a Mets game, it was for the Beatles concert there in August of '66. My first Met game was '67, a guy named Salty Parker was the interim-manager then. My first pennant race was 1969. As a 12 year-old that summer and fall, I managed to get to the park for 3 games. The first was the beginning of the Miracle which actually started on Tuesday July 8, 1969 with a day game against the Cubs. I was there a lot in '73. I saw games 3 & 5 of the 1973 NL Playoffs against the "Big Red Machine", from the upper deck behind home plate. It was from there that I witnessed the fight between Bud Harrelson and Pete Rose, and the mayhem that ensued. And that sweet victory in game 5! I saw a couple of WS games at Shea that year against that legendary Oakland A's club. I was there in 1985 for every single game Dr. K pitched including his two 16 strikeout performances, and the day he one-hit the Cubs on an infield single and the Mets won 1-0. I loved being a Met fan in those days. Hopefully we are once again preparing to emerge from the darkness.
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