Tonight brings the beginning of the season for the Mets Single-A short season affiliate the Brooklyn Cyclones who head to Staten Island to start their season. The Cyclones home debut will be on Saturday at 6 PM as they take on Staten Island once again.
Last year the Cyclones finished 42-34 missing the playoffs for the 2nd straight season despite leading the New York-Penn League with their 2.74 team ERA. However, the offense struggled for Brooklyn hitting the 2nd fewest homeruns in the league (22) and posting a team OPS of .656 that was below the league average OPS of .674 while also striking out the 2nd most in the league.
Tom Gamboa is returning to manage the Cyclones for the 2nd straight year with a team that will have nine players returning from last year and three 2015 picks on the Opening Night roster. Joining him on the coaching staff will be Dave LaRoche as pitching coach (1st, father of Adam and Andy), Yunir Garcia as hitting coach (1st, last 3 for Kingsport), and Edgardo Alfonzo also listed as a coach. The Cyclones are one of only four professional teams since 2001 that have never finished below .500 in any season.
The Cyclones have had three former Sterling Award winners for player of the year in Brooklyn make their debut for the Mets this season in Darrell Ceciliani, Daniel Muno, and Hansel Robles. Juan Lagares, Wilmer Flores, Bobby Parnell, Daniel Murphy, Lucas Duda, Jenrry Mejia, and Eric Campbell are all former Cyclones as well.
The preliminary roster below is subject to change with some guys possibly moving down and 4th round pick David Thompson yet to sign.
The Mets 24th round pick from last year and Mount Sinai, New York native Tyler Badamo will get the Opening Night start tonight, he was 1-0 with 1.74 ERA in 10 appearances (4 starts) in his pro debut last year for the GCL Mets. Here is the rest of the roster:
Corey Taylor- Mets 2015 7th round pick out of Texas Tech is a good size boy at 6’1 250 pounds that throws his fastball 91-95 with a mid-80′s slider that profiles him a reliever.
P.J. Conlon- Mets 2015 13th round pick out of San Diego who stand 6 feet tall at 175 pounds who throws his fastball in 86-90 MPH range with a good curve and like to throw all four pitches.
Christian Montgomery- 21-year old righty who had a 6.48 ERA and 1.920 WHIP in Kingsport last year and was suspended in 2013 for his 2nd positive test for drug of abuse.
Ty Williams- 21-year old right hander who had a 3.27 ERA while allowing only 7.0 H/9 for Kingsport last year.
Alex Palsha- 27th round pick last year closed for Kingsport and the GCL Mets combining for 11 saves and a 1.06 ERA in 17 innings.
Tyler Badamo- 22-year old who is 6’2 weighing 190 pounds that had a 4.33 SO/W ratio in the GCL last year in 31 innings.
Nicco Blank- The 5’9 right hander was a 24th round pick last year and allowed 24 baserunners in 9.1 innings last year for Kingsport.
Craig Missigman- 21-year old, 6’4 right hander that pitched in Kingsport last year to the tune of a 7.42 ERA in 13.1 innings.
Carlos Valdez- 24-year old left-handed pitcher who has pitched in Brooklyn the last two years and started this year in Savannah pitching to a 7.62 ERA in 13 innings.
Kevin Canelon- Left-handed 21-year old from Venezuela that pitched well in the GCL last year sporting a 1.45 ERA while walking only 1 batter in 37.1 innings.
Ruben Reyes- 24-year old right hander who has pitched the last two years in Kingsport walking 31 hitters in 40 innings.
Gaither Bumgardner- Returning to Brooklyn after a fine 2014 season allowing just 5.7 H/9, the 6’6 righty has pitched in 2.1 innings for Savannah this year.
Gaby Almonte- The 22-year old starter was 0-7 with a 5.00 ERA while striking out only 29 in 54 innings for Kingsport last year.
Michael Gibbons- Made his debut last week pitching a 7-inning scoreless gem for St. Lucie giving up just two hits while striking out four and hit 95 MPH on the gun.
Jose Celas- The 24-year old made 7 starts for the GCL Mets last year pitching to a 1.682 WHIP but did strike out 37 in 35.2 innings
Matt Blackham- The Mets 29th rounder last year was very good for Kingsport striking out 25 and giving up 10 hits in 19 innings last year.
Manuel Hilario- 23-year old who can also play right field, third base, and first base that hit .232/.300/.293 in the GCL last year.
Jose Garcia- Six foot, 200 pound 20-year old catcher that hit .215/.246/.243 while throwing out 33% of base stealers last year for Kingsport. He was signed for $750K back in 2011 out of Venezuela
Natanael Ramos- Was just added to the roster on his 22nd birthday! Hit .217.282.255 while throwing out 35% of base stealers last year in the GCL.
Alfredo Reyes- The 21-year old split time between Brooklyn and the GCL last year while playing SS and 2B. Received 7 at bats earlier this year in St. Lucie.
Branden Kaupe- 21-year old Hawaiian who hit .260/.352/.333 while playing mainly second base for Kingsport last year.
Vinny Siena- The Mets 14th round pick out of UCONN this year that hit .362/.424/.519 with 7 homeruns in his Junior year while playing second base
Pedro Perez- Returning to Brooklyn after splitting last season with the Cyclones and Kingsport. Hit .177/.227/.290 in 19 games for Savannah this year playing 1B/3B.
Will Fulmer- 22nd round pick from last year that is returning to play in Brooklyn after 24 games there last year playing RF, 2B, and 1B.
Jeffrey Diehl- 21-year old first basemen returns to Brooklyn after hitting .263/.287/.437 in 36 games for them last year.
Michael Katz- Mets 9th round pick from last year returns to Brooklyn after hitting .275/.323/.346 and playing 1B/RF for them last year.
Zach Mathieu- The 6’7, 235 pound first basemen hit .270/.358/.441 with 17 doubles, 3 homeruns, and 29 RBI in Kingsport last year.
Tucker Tharp- 30th round pick that is returning to Brooklyn after playing hitting .213 in 66 games there last year. Played in 1 game in Savannah and 2 in St. Lucie this year.
Oswald Caraballo- Played in Kingsport last year hitting .289/.317/.410 with 18 doubles, 4 homeruns, and 38 RBI while playing all three outfield spots.
Michael Bernal- The right fielder from the Dominican returns to Brooklyn after tying for the team lead in homeruns last year with five and 2nd in RBI with 36.
Enmanuel Zabala- 20-year old from Santo Domingo hit .301/.356/.367 with 13 stolen bases while playing mostly left field for the GCL Mets last year.