September 1st… It’s That Time Of The Year Again…
The morrow was a bright September morn;
The earth was beautiful as if newborn;
There was nameless splendor everywhere,
That wild exhilaration in the air,
Which makes the passers in the city street
Congratulate each other as they meet.
- Henry Wadsworth Longfellow
Good morning everyone…
A few notes as we turn the calendar page from August to September and rosters officially expand. We shouldn’t expect many moves considering most of the player that would have been promoted today, have already been with the Mets a month or longer. Joining Matt den Dekker, Travis d’Arnaud and Wilmer Flores will be lefthanded reliever Tim Byrdak and corner infielder Zach Lutz.
Byrdak has essentially been rehabbing his left shoulder ever since he had torn capsular surgery last year. He was re-signed in the offseason with the hope he would be ready by May or June, but that never happened. The lefty specialist has made 21 appearances while rehabbing for three different levels including Triple-A Las Vegas. Overall he has a 1.26 ERA and a 1.17 WHIP in 21.1 innings pitched.
Lutz on the other hand, is another one of those corner infielders who can get on base, but lacks the kind of power you want from someone his size. He might also be one of the slowest runners in the entire system. (Yes, slower than John Olerud) I don’t expect him to get more than 8-10 at-bats while he’s here, as the Mets’ first priority will be finding out where Josh Satin, Wilmer Flores and Lucas Duda fit it. Lutz, 27, was batting .293 with a .377 OBP, 13 home runs and 80 RBI in 399 at-bats with the 51s.
The player I’m most excited to see is righthanded reliever Vic Black, the Pirates’ prospect we received in the Byrd/Buck deal. After learning how hard this kid can throw, I hope Collins gives him plenty of work so we can all see how he may fit into our bullpen next season.
As Connor wrote earlier this week, he got his first taste as a closer last season with Altoona in the Eastern League, where he finished 38 games (including 13 saves), while posting a 1.65 ERA in 60 innings. Even more impressive were his 85 strikeouts (12.8 K/9). This season in 46.2 innings, he has a 2.51 ERA with 63 strikeouts and 17 saves.
The highly-regarded Black, was ranked 16th best prospect in the Pittsburgh system by Jonathan Mayo and 15th by John Sickels. He has an electric fastball that has been clocked at times over 100 miles per hour and a slider that can touch 90 on the gun. I’m really looking forward to this…
Speaking of relievers, the Mets have demoted Robert Carson to Triple-A Las Vegas. The lefty reliever suffered from a sever case of homer-itis during his stint in the majors, and it was apparent that he wasn’t fooling anybody. In 19.2 innings pitched, Carson allowed 21 hits including nine home runs for a whopping 8.24 ERA.
Given the abundance of quality relief options now on the Mets and taking into consideration the many more who are on the way in the minors, I don’t see Carson getting another opportunity with the Mets. I suspect he will be removed from the 40 man roster before the Rule 5 Draft and another team will give him a fresh chance.
Finally, it looks as though Bobby Parnell is done for the season. The 28 year old closer was having the best season of his career until he was felled by a herniated disc in his neck. While it has yet to be determined whether he will undergo surgery, Parnell recently told reporters that he was confident he would be able to avoid it. Either way, he should be ready for next Spring… and that’s a good thing…
About the Author: Joe DeCaro
I'm a lifelong Mets fan who loves writing and talking about the Amazins' 24/7. From the Miracle in 1969 to the magic of 1986, and even the near misses in '73 and '00, I've experienced it all - the highs and the lows. I started Mets Merized Online in 2005 to feed my addiction. Follow me on Twitter @metsmerized.
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