Mets Sign Matt Tuiasosopo to Minor League Deal

An article by posted on January 27, 2012

Tuiasosopo hit just .226/.341/.394 in Triple-A Tacoma last year 14 homeruns and 77 RBI in 526 at-bats. Over eight seasons in the minors Tuiasosopo has a complete line of .263/.359/.405.

In his brief time in the big leagues .176/.234/.306 and has struggled immensely making contact striking out 33.3% of the time.

Tuiasosopo was a mega two-sport star coming out of high school who had great blood lines and was considered a first round pick by many. He fell to the third round and wound up receiving a $2,290,000. The Mariners liked him so much some of their scouts compared in some light to Ken Griffey Jr. In hindsight that sounds ridiculous, but it shows the type of raw talent Tuiasosopo has.

He was a top prospect for the Mariners for many years and as recently as 2008 ranked in the Mariners top 10 prospects according to Baseball America. Baseball America had this to say about Tuiasosopo that year:

Strengths: The Mariners rave about Tuiasosopo’s makeup, noting that he never lost focus despite near constant struggling. He got off to fast start with West Tenn in 2007 and ran with it, showing above-average bat speed and solid pitch recognition and plate coverage. His power is strictly gap to gap now, but he has the strength and athleticism to drive the ball once he learns to identify his pitch. A converted shortstop, Tuiasosopo offers soft hands, arm strength and agility at third base. He has good speed for his size.

Weaknesses: Tuiasosopo still uses an inside-out swing and takes most balls the other way, cutting into his power potential. He started to turn on inside pitches in the second half and in the Arizona Fall League. Tuiasosopo’s stroke is long and he has a high leg kick that throws his timing off.

Since then Tuiasosopo has simply made no improvements to translate his great athleticism and tools into major league skills.

He is still young enough to improve, but it would be a minor miracle for him to wind up resembling anything that was expected of him coming out of high school. If he manages to find a way to translate is his ability to take a walk to the major league level, Tuiasospop can still become a valuable piece off the bench.

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