In his latest post on ESPN insider (subscription only), Keith Law ranked baseball’s top rookies using a different set of criteria based solely on the immediate impact a player will have this season. Law factors in expected roles and playing time as well as his expectations for their immediate performance. One Met made the list, and here is what he had to say about Travis d’Arnaud who he ranked #16 among his Top 20 2013 Impact Rookies.
There are two interesting observations he makes:
1. The injury concerns about D’Arnaud are beginning to get louder and louder since the young catcher reported to Mets camp, but rest assured the kid says he feels great. We will know more of course once he starts to see some real in-game action. There are some who wonder if D’Arnaud will be able to stick at catcher longterm as it’s already taken a physical toll even before getting to the majors. It’s definitely something to watch. The 6’2, 200 pound catching phenom turned 24 three days ago.
2. Based on recent comments by Sandy Alderson and Terry Collins it’s becoming quite clear that Wheeler will be spending plenty of time in Triple-A Las Vegas and that any talk about a promotion won’t even begin until he shows the team the “Wow Factor”.
D’Arnaud will probably get promoted sometime in May, once he’s passed the super two eligibility point, and only if he’s showing no rust from his nine month layoff from baseball activities after being shutdown with torn ligaments in his knee last season – his second season ender in last three seasons.
There are plenty of pitchers in camp who were brought in as well as some holdovers from last year who will get the chance to fill in if someone gets hurt in the rotation and they include Jeremy Hefner, Jenrry Mejia and Collin McHugh among others.