I find it amazing how little attention RHP Luis Mateo gets when the topic of conversation is about the Mets’ best pitching prospects. If you didn’t know any better you would think that Zack Wheeler, Jeurys Familia, Matt Harvey and one or two others, were the only starting pitchers in the Mets minor league system.
So let me introduce you to rising star Luis Mateo, currently the hottest pitcher in the Mets organization. This very young and promising starter is off to a great start for Brooklyn:
Last night, the 22-year-old right-hander scattered only three hits while striking out six and walking none as his confidence rises with every passing dominant start. Through 17.2 innings this season, Mateo has allowed just one run on seven hits while walking two and striking out 22. His future in Brooklyn may be winding down and a promotion to Savannah could come as soon as next week – that’s if the higher-ups opt to wait that long.
As we wrote last week, Mateo, averaged 10.8 strike-outs per nine innings in what was his first taste of pro ball for the DSL Mets last season. But for those of you who thought 2011 might have been a fluke, perish the thought as he’s now boasting an even higher 11.5 K/9 rate against better competition.
Mateo is a legit prospect and as our Minor League guru Pete told me yesterday while watching him live, not only does he throw hard, but he does so “effortlessly”. At 6-foot-three and 200 pounds, Mateo is an imposing presence on the mound and he was hitting 96mph this weekend. His slider is heavy and can miss bats, and his changeup keeps getting better and better the more he incorporates it into his offerings.
Pete got to see Mateo live and in action last night and I’m sure he’ll have plenty more to say about our latest prized pitching prospect, Luis Mateo. Remember the name.
On the flip-side of things, RHP Jeurys Familia has seen his stock tumble in 2012. The 22-year old delivered another sour note last night for the Buffalo Bisons lasting just three and a third innings and getting knocked up for seven runs on five hits and three walks. It was brutal to say the least.
For the season, Familia is now 5-5 with a 5.28 ERA in 17 starts. In 75 innings pitched he has allowed 81 hits and 52 walks while striking out 67. That said he hasn’t topped four strikeouts in any of his last five outings.
After last night’s loss, manager Wally Backman openly suggesting that a demotion to Double-A Binghamton may be in order for Familia, but also took some blame for the young right-handers failure to execute for Buffalo.
“I look at it as trying to work it out here, because then I feel like I failed him to some extent. But is that a possibility? It probably is a possibility. You can only take so many lumps before a guy loses total focus, so that’s something that could be discussed. But I look at it as failure upon myself and my coaches not being able to get somebody right, especially when we know what kind of stuff he has.”
Anyway, here we have two very talented pitching prospects each moving in totally opposite directions. You can expect some news on both very soon.
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