2014 Mets Top Prospects: No.14. Jeurys Familia, RHP

Top 25 Prospects familia 14

14. Jeurys Familia

Height: 6’4”
Weight: 230 lbs.
Age: 24
Bats/Throws: Right/Right

Jeurys Familia probably has the highest ceiling of any true reliever in the Mets system. His fastball is unequivocally electric as it consistently sits in the mid 90’s and has recently been clocked at triple digits. You might be saying okay, what’s the big deal, plenty of pitchers can throw that hard. Well, when a pitch is coming in at 95-100 mph with the amount of movement that Familia’s arm action generates, said pitch is virtually unhittable. Watching videos of him completely baffling hitters with just his fastball is mind-boggling. His slider is not quite plus, but its short and quick bite make it an above average pitch that works quite well in cahoots with his fastball. When you throw in a changeup that will most likely develop into an average offering, you’re talking about a pitcher with an arsenal to become one of the top closers in baseball.

There is a catch, however. Familia has struggled to stay healthy up to this point in his career and his command has always been rather deficient. In 9 major league games (10.2 IP) last season, Familia registered a 4.22 ERA and 1.9 WHIP. He also walked 9 batters and only struck out 8. There is hope on the horizon though because in 6 Dominican Winter League games (6.2 IP), Familia only gave up 2 ER with a 12:3 K:BB ratio. This recent success suggests he may have been completely healthy and found a rhythm.

Outlook: Familia has every chance to make the opening day roster. In fact, if the Mets fail to add a veteran bullpen arm by the start of the season, it’s almost a certainty. He has a leg up on some of the young relievers coming to camp because unlike most of them, he’s had a taste of the big leagues the last two seasons. The only way I see Familia starting the season in Las Vegas is if he has a dreadful spring training. I’m hopeful his winter league performance will carry into the spring and he’ll slot into the very young and promising 2014 Mets bullpen. If Familia shows an improved ability to throw the ball over the plate, his pitches are destined to miss bats and he might even give Vic Black some competition as the potential set-up man behind Bobby Parnell.


25. Wilfredo Tovar, SS

24. Juan Centeno, C

23. Cory Mazzoni, RHP

22. Jeff Walters, RHP

21. Jack Leathersich, LHP

20. Luis Mateo, RHP

19. Jayce Boyd, 1B

18. Domingo Tapia, RHP

17. Gabriel Ynoa, RHP

16. Vic Black, RHP

15. Michael Fulmer, RHP

14. Jeurys Familia, RHP














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  • DrDooby

    Really like Familia´s upside. He could be a true power reliever who can shut down opponents late in games. Mets haven´t really had that
    But I disagree that he´s almost a lock to make the Opening Day roster.
    In fact. he may be more of a long shot and could find himself in the Vegas pen to open the season and work a bit more in a lower pressure environment with Frank Viola.

    Closer: Parnell
    Setup: V.Black
    Lefty 1: Rice
    Lefty 2: Edgin (or someone yet to be signed to a minor league deal, say Byrdak)
    Righty 1: Germen – looked solid most of the time
    Righty 2: for now Familia in competition with Reid, Carreno and some of the younger arms such as Mazzoni or Walters
    Long relief: Torres (could be bumped up to Righty role if Lannan takes this spot)

    If the Mets do sign a more established veteran reliever, then Gonzalez Germen joins the competition. And in general, the Mets have usually opened the year with the more veteran group and then brought up the young arms along the way.

    I really wouldn´t mind a young & powerful bullpen, the way the Braves and Cardinals have succeeded with in recent years…

  • crazyjoed

    The only thing holding him back is his lack of control but that is the fatal flaw. If the Mets aren’t going to use his powerful arm 2-3 times a week then he should go to Vegas and not get screwed like Mejia did a few ago. Speaking of Mejia, if he doesn’t get the 5th spot in the rotation (he’s better than Lannan) then he is the set up man this year not Black (who may need time like Parnell did). Tapia is another power righty pen arm on the horizon.

  • what’s the official pronunciation of his first name?

  • I think it’s pronounced ‘Juries’

  • BadBadLeroyBrown

    Wish they wouldve kept Familia as a STARTING PITCHER…

    At one point he looked more promising than Harvey and Wheeler

  • Adam

    In Spanish, it should be pronounced HEY-oo-rees.

    Whether or not that’s a) how he pronounces it, and b) how everyone else pronounces it, is another question entirely.

  • Andrew Herbst

    I think that Familia is best suited in the pen.

  • DrDooby

    Unfortunately, Familia never had the control you need to remain a SP. If you need 21 pitches in an inning, you can be a power reliever. But you won’t cut it as a SP. Familia could be special – from the pen…

  • ParisWilponCOO

    I feel bad for him, and for Mejia. Although I am convinced they are the same person- have they ever both been seen on a field, healthy, at the same time?

  • agetting

    Mejia is way more talented than Familia is

  • agetting

    that’s actually not even close to true

  • I like Black’s upside a lot, but Familia is probably the highest ceiling reliever we have. We just need him to stay healthy and to learn to dominate the strike zone. My fear is that that might be too much to ask.

  • ParisWilponCOO

    No it’s “when-is” as in When Is Familia (ever getting off the DL?)

  • BehindTheBag

    I hope someday he learns to throw strikes.

  • Fast Eddie

    I wasn’t a big fan of Mejia while he was being rushed into service by Omar and Jerry, but he really showed me something when he came up last summer. The guy really has an idea out there on the mound. Everything he throws has movement in one direction or another; he also knows how to change speeds and move the ball around in the strike zone. The only problem for him to overcome is the question of his durability and stamina. Can he be depended upon to give the club six, maybe seven, strong innings almost every time out, all season long? If he can’t, he can still contribute mightily as a set-up man in the bullpen, being able to get as many as six outs in an outing. But first he has to stay healthy.

  • pumaz

    mejia looked like he finally grasped the art of pitching last year, almost as if the bone chips forced him to slow it down, and the results were very apparent.