Mets Merized Online » Kirk Cahill http://metsmerizedonline.com Sat, 06 Feb 2016 23:29:20 +0000 en-US hourly 1 http://wordpress.org/?v=3.8.13 2015 MMO Top 25 Prospects: Numbers 11-15 http://metsmerizedonline.com/2015/03/2015-mmo-top-25-prospects-numbers-11-15.html/ http://metsmerizedonline.com/2015/03/2015-mmo-top-25-prospects-numbers-11-15.html/#comments Sat, 14 Mar 2015 13:00:22 +0000 http://metsmerizedonline.com/?p=173192 milton ramos

No. 15 – Milton Ramos, SS

Age: 19
Height: 5’11
Weight: 158
Bats/Throws: Right/Right
Last Year: Not Ranked

Synopsis: When the Mets drafted Milton Ramos in the 3rd round of the 2014 draft they knew they were getting a slick fielding shortstop whose glove alone could carry him to the majors. What they’re hoping is that he can develop into is something more.

Upon signing, Ramos was sent to the Mets Gulf Coast affiliate where he would play 51 games, splitting time between shortstop and second base. He slashed just .241/.299/.355 in 185 plate appearances and notched 14 extra-base hits without a home run.

Nobody doubts his glove which has the potential to be special, showing world class range and an above average arm. However some question if he’ll ever hit enough to reach the majors. His swing currently has far too many moving parts, but there’s ability there and he’s plenty athletic enough to make the adjustments necessary. If he can turn himself into just an average hitter– or even a notch below– he can be an everyday player who provides enough value with his glove to earn his keep.

Best Case: Everyday shortstop; lower half of the order hitter; gold glove caliber defense.

ETA: 2019

akeel morris

No. 14 – Akeel Morris, RP

Age: 22
Height: 6’1
Weight: 170
Bats/Throws: Right/Right
Last Year: Not Ranked

Synopsis: After struggling with control and durability issues as a starter, the Mets shifted Akeel Morris to the pen in 2012 and the move immediately paid dividends, as the former 10th round pick has turned into one of the minors most dominant relievers.

Morris pitched all of 2014 for the Mets Single-A affiliate in Savannah, where he simply humiliated the league. In 57 innings the right-hander allowed just four earned runs, leading to an eye-popping 0.63 ERA. He fanned 89 hitters on the season and walked 22 to go along with his 16 saves for the Sand Gnats.

The Virgin Islands native isn’t the most dominating physical presence on the mound, but he lets his stuff do the talking. Morris attacks hitters with a fastball that sits 93-95 and has touched the upper 90′s. Once he’s set you up with the fastball he goes to his best offering, a low 80′s changeup that features great deception as a plus offering. The 22-year will mix in a slider to keep hitters honest, but it’s an average offering at best.

Best Case: Closer for the first-division team.

ETA: 2016

gabriel ynoa

No. 13 – Gabriel Ynoa, SP

Age: 21
Height: 6’2
Weight: 158
Bats/Throws: Right/Right
Last Year: #17

Synopsis: Gabriel Ynoa is a pitcher who thrives off of his control, and has steadily climbed through the minors with success at each stop. He’s never going to be a guy the scouts drool over, but he’s a solid pitcher with a major league floor.

The 21-year old Ynoa started off 2014 by making 14 starts for the Mets High-A affiliate in the Florida State League. He was then promoted to Double-A Binghamton where he made another 11 starts. In total the righty tossed 148.1 innings to the tune of a 4.07 ERA. He struck out 106 batters and walked just 25 in that span.

As previously stated, Ynoa isn’t going to blow up any radar guns or flash stuff that’s going to make your hair stand up. However he’s improved at every stop despite consistently being young for each league. He throws a low-90′s fastball that has solid sinking action to it. He compliments the fastball with his best offering, a changeup with good fade and deception– flashing plus potential. His third offering is a slider which is solid-average with room for improvement. His delivery is sound, compact and should promote durability.

Best Case: Back-end starter; reliable innings eater.

ETA: 2016

Cecchini gavin

No. 12 – Gavin Cecchini, SS

Age: 21
Height: 6’1
Weight: 180
Bats/Throws: Right/Right
Last Year: #11

Synopsis: Gavin Cecchini the younger brother of Red Sox top prospect Garin Cecchini, was a first round pick in 2012 who perhaps hasn’t lived up to the lofty expectations set for a player drafted in the first 15 selections.

The younger Cecchini brother split 2014 between Low-A Savannah and High-A St. Lucie and even got a handful of AB’s in Double-A Binghamton. In all, he hit .247/.328/.378 with 27 doubles and eight home runs in 126 games. He also swiped 10 bases in 14 tries.

As a prospect there’s nothing flashy about Cecchini. You won’t find any 7′s on his scouting report. However he’s a solid player with great instinct for both his position and the game in general. He’s got a solid hit tool with a good approach at the plate and improving power that should eventually grade out above-average as a shortstop. Defensively he’s a sound shortstop who will make the routine plays and should stick at the position. As you can see, a lot of solid’s throughout his report, which is a perfect description for him.

Best Case: Everyday shortstop on a second-division team.

ETA: 2016

bryan green

No. 11 – Dominic Smith, 1B

Age: 19
Height: 6’0
Weight: 185
Bats/Throws: Left/Left
Last Year: #4

Synopsis: Another high profile first-round pick for the Mets (11th overall in 2013) who hasn’t yet lived up to the billing. However Dominic Smith is still very, very young and has the ability to breakout.

Smith played all of 2014 in the Sally League for the Mets Low-A affiliate in Savannah. In 126 games he hit .271/.344/.338 with just one home run and 26 doubles. He drew 51 walks and struck out 77 times.

The big first basemen out of California failed to meet many peoples expectations in 2014– his first full season as a professional. His power numbers were almost non-existent, although Savannah is a nightmare for hitters. The sweet-swinging lefty often looked off balance and overmatched in his at bats. However there’s plenty of hope for Smith. Scouts anticipate that he should hit for high averages at a pro, but will likely be more of a gap hitter than one who mashes home runs. He has a good approach at the plate for someone his age, and should draw plenty of walks as a pro which will lead to high OBP’s. Defensively he grades out as plus, but his big body could inhibit his range as he grows.

Best Case: Starting first basemen; middle of the order hitter.

ETA: 2018

MMO Top 25 Prospects, 25-21

MMO Top 25 Prospects, 20-16

2015 MMO TOP 25 PROSPECTS

25. Cesar Puello, OF
24. Robert Whalen, RHP
23. Michael Fulmer, RHP
22. Matthew Bowman, RHP
21. Champ Stuart, OF
20. Jack Leathersich, LHP
19. Casey Meisner, RHP
18. Wuilmer Becerra, RF
17. Cory Mazzoni, RHP
16. Matt Reynolds, SS
15. Milton Ramos, SS
14. Akeel Morris, RHP
13. Gabriel Ynoa, RHP
12. Gavin Cecchini, SS
11. Dominic Smith, 1B
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Last Word On Harvey’s Trip To The Bronx http://metsmerizedonline.com/2014/09/last-word-on-harveys-trip-to-the-bronx.html/ http://metsmerizedonline.com/2014/09/last-word-on-harveys-trip-to-the-bronx.html/#comments Sat, 27 Sep 2014 13:00:01 +0000 http://metsmerizedonline.com/?p=166672 matt harvey

As I’m sure many of you know by now, Matt Harvey attended Derek Jeter‘s last game in Yankee Stadium on Thursday night. As you also probably know, that’s elicited plenty of reactions from fans, and beat writers alike, and of course all the talking heads on SNY where Harvey was shredded apart.

Here’s my take: I don’t see the big deal whatsoever.

In an age where athletes are being arrested on a seemingly daily basis, whether it be for drugs, DWI, or domestic violence, we’re constantly reminded that many athletes are not the upstanding citizens we think they are. There’s a lot of bad apple out there, but Matt Harvey isn’t one of them. Yet somehow, this talented and exciting young ballplayer is always being vilified. His crime? Having a personal life.

Matt Harvey is 25-years old. He’s living and playing in arguably the greatest city on the planet, where the nightlife can get pretty wild, and where there’s a million and one things that can trip up a young man’s life. Just ask some of the 1986 Mets, they’ll tell you. But now we have all these pompous sportscasters with their false outrage, trying to get fans riled up and ticked off at Harvey for spending his Thursday night attending a baseball game at Yankee Stadium? Really? Lets look at their arguments…

Because the Yankees are our rivals!

Well, random italicized voice, what if I told you that they aren’t our rivals? They play in a different league. Our place in the standings means nothing to the Yankees, and vice versa. Our rivals are the Nationals, Braves, Marlins and Phillies. We need to finish with a better record than those teams. The Mets/Yankees rivalry only exists in our minds because they both wear shirts that say New York on the front. Sure, it’s great to talk smack to your buddies when the Mets beat the Yanks, but in the grand scheme of things, it doesn’t matter. And Thursday night wasn’t about the Yankees, it was about Derek Jeter. You don’t have to be a Yankee fan to appreciate what transpired in the Bronx. It was a historic night and a memorable baseball moment, and Matt Harvey wanted to be there to experience it like so many others. And he did on his own free time.

Because the Mets pay his salary!

Well, sure they do, but that doesn’t give them the right to tell him what to do with in his spare time. His offseason started when the Mets shut him down last week and told him not to pick up a baseball until next spring. Who are they to tell him how he chooses to entertain himself? Harvey wasn’t breaking any laws, or even breaking any sort of moral code. He went to a baseball game to root for the player he idolized growing up.

He probably ticked off the teammates!

Perhaps there’s a few Mets who would have preferred Harvey didn’t attend the game, but I’d bet it’s mostly so they wouldn’t have to answer questions about it. Is that enough to say he shouldn’t have gone out of respect for his teammates? Maybe. But Matt Harvey has about 10 years, if he’s lucky, to capitalize on the fame and exposure he’s receiving now. Why should he forgo doing what makes him happy just to appease a few teammates who probably aren’t bothered on a personal level? He clearly wasn’t doing it just to ham it up for the cameras. He’s a huge sports fan who constantly attends sporting events ever since joining the Mets and long before they drafted him.

What about Mets management?

What about them? What exactly does Matt Harvey owe them? They’ve questioned almost every decision he’s made personally over the last year when they’ve all been trivial matters similar to this “incident”– if you want to call it that. Like I’ve said previously, he’s not breaking any laws or doing anything detrimental to the Mets brand. Ha ha ha. Sorry, I’m laughing at the idea of someone being capable of further damaging the Mets brand than the Mets themselves have done already. Especially by doing something as harmless as going to a baseball game. Bottom line, if the Mets hadn’t drafted Harvey and he had gone to the Phillies or Marlins, we’d all be bemoaning the fact that he wasn’t on our team. I guess Mets management could always punish Harvey if they wanted to, by sticking his locker by the shower stalls this spring. Just kidding, the Mets would never stoop that low.

matt harvey

In closing, Matt Harvey isn’t doing anything none of us wouldn’t do in his position. A young guy making lots of money and spending it by getting great seats at the Garden or on Broadway or at Yankee Stadium. Actually, he’s handling his celebrity much better than most.

Harvey was an All Star in his first full season, emerging as one of the best and brightest players in the game. That didn’t happen by chance. Coming out of college he was projected to be a mid-rotation starter, but he worked his butt off to become one of the game’s most dominating pitchers. Then unfortunately he got hurt, but what has he done since then? He worked his tail off again to get back so quickly that he had to be restrained by the organization because they felt he was pushing too hard. He’s competitive. He lives for competition. I wish we had more players like him. I’m not going to attack the guys character because he spent the night going to a ballgame… Even if it’s a Yankees game.

mmo presented

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Vladimir Guerrero’s Son Dazzles Scouts In Workout http://metsmerizedonline.com/2014/09/vladimir-guerreros-son-dazzles-scouts-in-workout.html/ http://metsmerizedonline.com/2014/09/vladimir-guerreros-son-dazzles-scouts-in-workout.html/#comments Tue, 09 Sep 2014 17:02:13 +0000 http://metsmerizedonline.com/?p=165352 According to Nate Scott of USA Today, Vladimir Guerrero Jr., son of baseball great Vladimir Guerrero, worked out for several teams recently and scouts came away impressed.

At just 15-years old, Guerrero Jr. stands 6’2, 220 pounds and scouts say he’s flashing more potential than even his father did at a similar age. Scouts also suggested that he could reach the majors before his 20th birthday.

Here’s the video of his batting practice:

The Yankees, Angels and Blue Jays were amongst the teams who saw the workout. It doesn’t appear that the Mets were in attendance, but if you look at Vladimir’s cap, one can certainly dream…

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mmo presented

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Is Lucas Duda The Future At First Base? http://metsmerizedonline.com/2014/08/is-lucas-duda-the-future-at-first-base.html/ http://metsmerizedonline.com/2014/08/is-lucas-duda-the-future-at-first-base.html/#comments Thu, 28 Aug 2014 12:00:57 +0000 http://metsmerizedonline.com/?p=164300 lucas duda

A simple search of my Twitter feed, or my comment history on this site will reveal a strong dislike for Lucas Duda (as a baseball player, I don’t know the man).

This spring when the Mets were auditioning both Duda and the since traded Ike Davis for the everyday first base spot, I strongly backed Ike Davis. In my opinion, I had seen flashes of brilliance from Ike that I hadn’t seen in Duda. Davis hit 32 homers in 2012. He’d shown a disciplined approach, posting walk rates over 10.0% from 2010-2012. He’d hit .302 in an injury shortened 2011. Ike Davis looked like a guy who was waiting to put it all together. Duda looked like a spare part.

I was dead wrong, and I’m here to admit that.

Lucas Duda has turned himself into more than just an average first basemen, while Ike Davis has continued to struggle — recently losing his job in Pittsburgh’s first base platoon.

Yesterday, Mike Petriello of FanGraphs published an article entitled “Is Lucas Duda a Star Now?”, and it really caught me off-guard. I knew Lucas was having a good season, but I hadn’t really put it in perspective by considering his standing amongst his peers. Petriello broke down some of Duda’s stats, and I highly recommend reading the article, as well as everything they do on FanGraphs.

Here’s some numbers in Duda’s stat-line that really jumped out at me.

(All statistics are accurate as of 8/26)

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Despite being more than a full run lower than stars like Paul Goldschmidt, Anthony Rizzo and Freddie Freeman, Duda ranks an impressive fourth in WAR amongst National League first basemen.

While we all know that Lucas currently sits in third place in the NL in home runs, there’s another metric which really highlights just how much of a power boost he’s provided for this light-hitting Mets team. Check out the NL leaders in ISO:

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This is quite a surprise. Essentially what ISO means is how many extra base hits a player averages per at-bat. As you can see, Lucas trails just the NL home run leader Giancarlo Stanton in this category.

Lastly, we’ll take a look at how Duda stacks up against other first basemen in wOBA, or Weighted On-Base Percentage. wOBA is one of my favorite metrics. While batting average is certainly useful, its flaw is that it weighs all hits equally. Slugging percentage, while weighing hits differently, has proven to be inaccurate over time while leaving certain components out all together. wOBA weighs all hits and ways of reaching base differently in correlation to their actual run value.

Once again Lucas places in the upper echelon.

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So does, that answer the question? Is Lucas the future at first base for this team? In short, I don’t know. While he’s shown improvements in nearly all facets of his game, there’s no telling what next season will bring. What I do know is that Lucas is having a tremendous season and has a lot of us eating crow– but I’ll be damned if it doesn’t taste pretty good.

What do our knowledgeable readers think?

]]> http://metsmerizedonline.com/2014/08/is-lucas-duda-the-future-at-first-base.html/feed/ 0 Herrera Named To Baseball America’s All-Prospect Team http://metsmerizedonline.com/2014/08/herrera-named-to-baseball-americas-all-prospect-team.html/ http://metsmerizedonline.com/2014/08/herrera-named-to-baseball-americas-all-prospect-team.html/#comments Tue, 05 Aug 2014 19:32:00 +0000 http://metsmerizedonline.com/?p=162693 Dilson Herrera

Mets prospect Dilson Herrera was named to Baseball America’s All-Prospect Team at the keystone spot for the month of July.

The 20-year old Herrera has done more than hold his own against the much older competition of the Eastern League, hitting .340/.402/.585 with five home runs, seven doubles, and six stolen bases in the month of July.

Here’s what Baseball America had to say about our rising prospect:

Herrera may not have a single knockout tool, but the 20-year-old Colombian does many things well and has made the jump to Double-A in the second half without a misstep. In fact, he hit .320 and ranked third in the minors with 139 hits at the end of July, thanks to a quick swing and plenty of hard contact. He has enough power, speed and control of the zone to profile as a big league starter at the keystone.

Overall Herrera is hitting .319/.374/.463 with nine long balls, 27 doubles and 21 steals in 26 attempts splitting the season between St. Lucie and Binghamton.

(Photo credit: Mark Olson/MiLB.com)

mmo

 

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Mejia Experiencing Back Tightness http://metsmerizedonline.com/2014/08/mejia-experiencing-back-tightness.html/ http://metsmerizedonline.com/2014/08/mejia-experiencing-back-tightness.html/#comments Mon, 04 Aug 2014 23:08:04 +0000 http://metsmerizedonline.com/?p=162618 jenry mejia

Mets closer Jenrry Mejia entered Monday’s game in a 3-3 tie with the Mets looking to grab a split of their four game series with the Giants. Unfortunately, the Dominican fireballer struggled, allowing a run on two hits and a walk, and eventually taking the loss.

After the game Mejia told ESPN New York’s Adam Rubin that his back has been tight, but he refused to make excuses for the way he pitched.

“It was out of the zone,” Mejia said. “A curveball out of the zone. He got it. I don’t know how he got it. I thought that was a foul ball. I thought I threw a curveball for a ball, but he swung and he got it.”

Mejia also told reporters that he had a similar issue with his back a month ago, and that it was remedied with a couple days rest.

mmo presented

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Jacob deGrom Wins NL Rookie Of The Month http://metsmerizedonline.com/2014/08/jacob-degrom-wins-nl-rookie-of-the-month.html/ http://metsmerizedonline.com/2014/08/jacob-degrom-wins-nl-rookie-of-the-month.html/#comments Mon, 04 Aug 2014 20:33:17 +0000 http://metsmerizedonline.com/?p=162600 jake degrom

ESPN New York’s Adam Rubin tweeted that Mets right-hander Jacob deGrom has won the National League Rookie of the Month award for the month of July.

The former shortstop out of Stetson University went 4-1 in five July starts. He compiled a 1.39 ERA with 38 strikeouts and seven walks in 32.1 innings for the month.

After a shaky start, the 6’4 deGrom has rebounded in a big way and is now 6-5 with a 2.77 ERA in 94.1 innings on the season.

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Nats Land Asdrubal Cabrera; Likely Out On Murphy http://metsmerizedonline.com/2014/07/nats-last-asdrubal-cabrera-likely-out-on-murphy.html/ http://metsmerizedonline.com/2014/07/nats-last-asdrubal-cabrera-likely-out-on-murphy.html/#comments Thu, 31 Jul 2014 19:27:24 +0000 http://metsmerizedonline.com/?p=162279 asdrubal-cabrera

Paul Hoynes of the Cleveland Plain Dealer announced via Twitter that the Nationals have acquired shortstop Asdrubal Cabrera from the Indians for infielder Zach Walters.

The Nationals were in the market for a middle infielder and had reportedly expressed interest in the Mets Daniel Murphy.

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Price Headed To Tigers In Three-Team Deal http://metsmerizedonline.com/2014/07/price-headed-to-tigers-in-three-team-deal.html/ http://metsmerizedonline.com/2014/07/price-headed-to-tigers-in-three-team-deal.html/#comments Thu, 31 Jul 2014 16:45:30 +0000 http://metsmerizedonline.com/?p=162284 david price

Update 4:45 PM

Fox Sports’ Ken Rosenthal is tweeting that the Rays have acquired pitcher Drew Smyly and shortstop Willy Adames from the Tigers and shortstop/second basemen Nick Franklin from Seattle in the three-way mega deal. Center fielder Austin Jackson goes to the Mariners from Detroit.

4:01 PM

The Tigers saw the A’s trade for Lester and raised all-in, dealing for Rays ace David Price in a three-team deal. The Mariners are believed to be the third team.

Price is 11-8 with a 3.11 ERA and a major-league leading 189 strikeouts in 170.2 innings this season.

More details to come.

mmo

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Jacob deGrom Earns NL Player Of The Week Honors http://metsmerizedonline.com/2014/07/jacob-degrom-earns-nl-player-of-the-week-honors.html/ http://metsmerizedonline.com/2014/07/jacob-degrom-earns-nl-player-of-the-week-honors.html/#comments Mon, 28 Jul 2014 13:11:25 +0000 http://metsmerizedonline.com/?p=161986 jake degrom

deGrom went 4-1 with a 1.77 ERA in July

Mets rookie right-hander Jacob deGrom was awarded the NL Player of the Week Award in the NL for last week. deGrom shared the honor with Marlins closed Steve Cishek.

The 26-year old deGrom went 2-0 with a 0.68 ERA in two starts last week. He struck out 11 and walked just three in 13.1 innings in victories against the Mariners and Brewers.

deGrom is now 5-5 on the season with a 2.79 ERA in 14 starts. He’s striking out 8.59 batters per nine innings and walking 3.21. He leads all NL rookie pitchers with a 1.4 WAR.

mmo always believe

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Four Mets Prospects Crack Law’s Midseason Top 50 http://metsmerizedonline.com/2014/07/four-mets-prospects-crack-laws-midseason-top-50.html/ http://metsmerizedonline.com/2014/07/four-mets-prospects-crack-laws-midseason-top-50.html/#comments Thu, 17 Jul 2014 19:31:51 +0000 http://metsmerizedonline.com/?p=161054 michael conforto

Michael Conforto, who is Keith Law’s #32 ranked prospect, signs his contract with the Mets last week

ESPN‘s Keith Law released his midseason update of his Top 50 Prospects list.

In his preseason Top 100 list there were five Mets who made the cut. They were Noah Syndergaard (24), Travis d’Arnaud (36), Dominic Smith (37), Rafael Montero (60), and Brandon Nimmo (92).

However this time around the Mets placed four prospects within the top 50 in all of baseball– and that’s with Travis d’Arnaud no longer considered a prospect.

Let’s take a look at the four names and where they placed:

# 16 Noah Syndergaard, RHP

It’s no surprise that Thor is our top rated prospect. The big right-hander is widely considered to be one of the best pitching prospects in the game. It is however a pleasant surprise to see that Syndergaard has risen to 16 despite what many are considering a subpar year thus far. In 16 starts for Triple-A Las Vegas Noah has pitched to a 5.31 ERA while striking out 9.3 batters per nine innings and walking 2.6 per nine.

Law’s take:

Thor is back, healthy, and throwing well, even though Vegas is no picnic for pitchers. (He told me before the Futures Game he’s more bothered by the heat than the altitude; when you throw straight downhill it’s probably easier to live with pitching in thin air.) He’s still mostly fastball-changeup, but will show a curveball and slider, neither of which is plus — though the curveball does have some depth thanks to his size (6-foot-6, 240 pounds) and really easy, fluid delivery.

# 32 Michael Conforto, OF

It has to make fans happy to see this ranking. The Mets drafted  Conforto with the 10th overall pick in this June’s draft. The 6’1 Oklahoma State product was considered by some to be the best college hitting prospect in the entire draft. He just signed with the Mets nearly a week ago for $2.97MM and is expected to join the Brooklyn Cyclones this week.

Law’s take:

Conforto was the most advanced college bat in the draft class this year, leading Division I in OBP despite playing in a major conference (Pac-12, for Oregon State), while showing above-average power and adequate defense in left field. He doesn’t have huge upside, but he’s very close to major league ready and should be at least an above-average regular with a higher ceiling if the power exceeds expectations.

# 34 Brandon Nimmo, OF

After a very impressive 2013 in Savannah the Mets saw fit to challenge Nimmo with an assignment to High-A St. Lucie to begin this season. All he’s done since then was have a breakout season that earned him another promotion, as well as increased notoriety in the prospect world. For the year the Wyoming native has hit .291/.417/.440 and has started to show some of the power many scouts believed would eventually come.

Law’s take:

The Mets’ first-round pick in 2011 was primed for a breakout once he escaped the pitcher-friendly environment of Savannah after last season. He’s done just that, showing power at two levels now all while showcasing his trademark patience. I don’t see him staying in center field and he might only be a moderate hitter for average, but very high OBPs and 20-plus homers a year with great defense in right would make for an above-average regular.

# 49 Dominic Smith, 1B

Smith’s stock seems to have dropped a bit when you simply look at the number he’s ranked, but you have to factor in players added to the pool who were drafted this year as well as other break out guys. Smith has had a very impressive season in Savannah, hitting .297/.354/.361, and although he hasn’t hit a homer his 21 doubles are indicator that there may be power to come.

Law’s take:

Smith’s lack of power output in low-A is partially the result of his home park, as Savannah is a terrible place for left-handed power hitters, and partially the result of a whole-field approach that has Smith hitting for average while striking out at a pretty low clip — well above the league mean or median despite his youth. Smith does have plus raw power, but we may not see much of it until he escapes the Sally League next year, much as Nimmo’s power didn’t come out until he left Savannah this spring.

To read the rest of Law’s list, click here (Insider only).

mmo

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All Star Recap: MLB Celebrates Jeter; AL Bests NL 5-3 http://metsmerizedonline.com/2014/07/mmo-recap-mlb-celebrates-jeter-al-bests-nl-5-3.html/ http://metsmerizedonline.com/2014/07/mmo-recap-mlb-celebrates-jeter-al-bests-nl-5-3.html/#comments Wed, 16 Jul 2014 04:00:15 +0000 http://metsmerizedonline.com/?p=160831 derek jeter

The 2014 MLB All-Star Game was held Tuesday night at Target Field in Minnesota.

In what will be his last All-Star appearance, Derek Jeter led off the game for the American League and paused to accept an incredible ovation from fans and players alike. In typical Jeter-like fashion, he then lined a double to the opposite field.

Adam Wainwright started the game for the National League and surrendered the double to Jeter. The Angels Mike Trout would follow with an RBI triple to give the AL an early lead. After a strikeout by Robinson Cano, Trout would come around to score on a two-run missile of a home run off the bat of Tigers slugger Miguel Cabrera adding to the AL’s lead by making it 3-0.

The National League would quickly get two runs back in the top of the second off Boston left-hander Jon Lester. Chase Utley would get the NL on the board when he slammed a double off the right-centerfield wall to plate Aramis Ramirez. Brewers backstop Jonathan Lucroy would follow with a double of his own that would score Utley, drawing the NL within one run.

Yu Darvish and Clayton Kershaw would halt the scoring in the third, each pitching a scoreless frame for their respective league.

However, the NL would draw even in the fourth off of White Sox ace Chris Sale on the back of Lucroy’s second double of the night, scoring Dee Gordon from second.

The American League would go ahead for good in the bottom of the fifth when Trout doubled in the A’s Derek Norris. Astros second basemen Jose Altuve would tack on an insurance run by hitting a sacrifice fly off of Tyler Clippard, scoring Aramis Ramirez once again. Both runs in the inning were charged to former Twin Pat Neshek.

The Mets Daniel Murphy would enter the game in the bottom of the seventh. He would get his first and only at-bat in the top of the 8th, and struck out with two runners on against Fernando Rodney.

Twins closer and Minnesota native Glen Perkins would close the game out for the AL, setting down the NL in order.

Derek Jeter finished the game 2-2 with a run scored. He was removed from the game in the top of the fourth to another large ovation.

The Angels Mike Trout was named MVP of the game. He finished 2 for 3 at the plate with a triple, a double, two RBI’s and a run scored.

(Photo credit: L.G. PATTERSON/MLB.COM)

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Syndergaard Closes Out USA Win In Futures Game http://metsmerizedonline.com/2014/07/syndergaard-closes-out-usa-win-in-futures-game.html/ http://metsmerizedonline.com/2014/07/syndergaard-closes-out-usa-win-in-futures-game.html/#comments Mon, 14 Jul 2014 00:10:52 +0000 http://metsmerizedonline.com/?p=160660 noah syndergaard

Mets top pitching prospect Noah Syndergaard pitched a scoreless ninth inning and earned the save for Team USA in today’s 3-2 Futures Game win over the World Team. The 6’6 Texan struck out a batter and allowed a hit in one inning of work.

Catching prospect Kevin Plawecki started the game behind the dish and went 0 for 2 at the plate with an RBI groundout that gave the USA it’s first run.

The Cubs Javier Baez and Rangers Joey Gallo, two of the games biggest power prospects, homered in the game. Gallo was named the games MVP.

(Photo credit: USA Today)

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Reynolds’ Stock On The Rise http://metsmerizedonline.com/2014/07/reynolds-stock-on-the-rise.html/ http://metsmerizedonline.com/2014/07/reynolds-stock-on-the-rise.html/#comments Sun, 13 Jul 2014 02:56:00 +0000 http://metsmerizedonline.com/?p=160571 MiLB: April 28 - St. Lucie Mets at Tampa Yankees

Coming in to 2014 the average Mets fan probably wouldn’t have known who Matt Reynolds was. The former second-round pick of the Mets in the 2012 MLB Draft was coming off of a rough season in which he hit just .226 as a 22-year old in High-A St. Lucie.

However 2014 has been a completely different story. The 6’1 198 pounder, who plays mostly shortstop, began the season in Double-A Binghamton and came out firing on all cylinders, hitting .373/.455/.440 in April. He would continue to tear up the Eastern League until mid-June when he was promoted to Triple-A Las Vegas. The advanced competition of the Pacific Coast League hasn’t slowed him down either, as he’s hit .346/.400/.469 through 23 games with the 51s.

All of Reynolds’ success has placed him firmly on the radar, both within the organization as well as with the fan base, when discussing the big league club.

“His [plate] approach is so good, he can make adjustments quick,” Binghamton hitting coach told the New York Post. “He’s consistent. He has a lot of confidence with two strikes, and you can see that consistency when he is [either] ahead or behind in the count.”

So whether it be as a potential replacement for Daniel Murphy, whose name has begun to surface in trade rumors, or at natural position of shortstop, where Ruben Tejada continues to struggle to hit consistently, Reynolds is the name on the tip of everyone’s tongue.

However, Reynolds has always had reputation as being an offensive-minded shortstop who lacked the defensive prowess to hold down an everyday stop. But people within the organization believe in his ability.

“He was a third baseman in college, but we thought he was a superior defender [who could] play in the middle of the diamond,” DePodesta said. “He was very fundamentally sound — he seemed to do a lot of little things well.”

It appears that people outside of the Mets are starting to change their tune as well:

“Defensively, he made all the plays for me,” one American League scout tells the Post. “His transfer on the double play was nothing special, but he’s a solid guy.”

In the end, Reynolds’ bat is going to be his calling card and his ticket to the majors. The only question is when that ticket will get punched. The Mets can certainly use his offense, so the time may be now.

“He looked like a big leaguer,” Salt Lake hitting coach Francisco Matos said, after Reynolds went 7-for-16 against the Bees last week. “He used the whole field, which is good for a young kid.”

(Photo credit Mark LoMoglio/Tampa Yankees)

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Should Mets and Cubs Swap Struggling Stud Prospects? http://metsmerizedonline.com/2014/07/should-mets-and-cubs-swap-struggling-stud-prospects.html/ http://metsmerizedonline.com/2014/07/should-mets-and-cubs-swap-struggling-stud-prospects.html/#comments Sat, 05 Jul 2014 18:44:57 +0000 http://metsmerizedonline.com/?p=160080 javier baez 2

Javier Baez came into 2014 ranked the sixth best prospect in baseball by MLB.com

As you probably already know, the Cubs and A’s pulled off a blockbuster trade that sent Jeff Samardzija and Jason Hammel to Oakland in return for a package of young players highlighted by shortstop Addison Russell.

Adding Russell to the fold has created a potential glut of infield prospects for Chicago to go with some impressive young players on the infield currently at the big league level. The Cubs stockpile of infield prospects now includes Russell, shortstop Javier Baez, third basemen Kris Bryant, second basemen Arismendy Alcantara, and the fourth overall pick in 2014 Kyle Schwarber who could end up at first basemen.

The easy assumption to make for the Cubs would be to trade off Starlin Castro, who has had an up and down tenure for the Cubs, and often comes under fire for lack of hustle. That’s an avenue the Mets could and should pursue as pointed out by our own Joe D., but as Tom Hardy told Joseph Gordon-Levitt in Inception: “You mustn’t be afraid to dream a little bigger, darling”.

I think Sandy Alderson should dream bigger, something he’s been accused of failing to do in his time with the Mets.

Maybe the pitching hungry Cubs would be interested in swapping Baez for Noah Syndergaard. Perhaps Castro would cost less in terms of players heading to Chicago, but we sorta already know what he is, right? Plus we know how players who have a perceived lack of hustle usually work out in New York.

It’s no secret that things haven’t gone exactly as planned for Syndergaard in 2014. He’s struggled with injury, the PCL, and with his own development. In 72.2 innings for Las Vegas the 6’5 right-hander has a 5.70 ERA. However there are still positives. The stuff is still there. He’s striking out over a batter per inning and his 2.85 BB/9 is respectable. It appears that while Syndergaard hasn’t been great, he’s been a little unlucky. His .380 BABIP and 4.19 FIP would back that up. So maybe that’s enough to get the Cubs to part with Baez, who hasn’t been without his own struggles in 2014.

Coming off a 2013 that saw the stocky shortstop with a lightening-quick bat mash 37 homers, Baez came into 2014 as one of the top handful of prospects in all of baseball. However in 2014 some of the things that scouts questioned before 2013 came to fruition. Baez, who has a lot of swing and miss in his bat, was able to hit .294 in 2013 despite striking out in 28.8% of his at-bats. So far in 2014 in he’s struck out in 32.5% of his at-bats and it’s caused his batting average to plummet to .241. He’s still managed to slug 12 longballs and has shown signs of life lately, hitting .275 in June.

I think this is an interesting debate. Perhaps there would be additional pieces needed to make the deal work. But it’s a starting point.

Trade the potential stud pitcher for the potential stud hitter we so desperately need?

(Photo credits: Steve Marcus/Las Vegas Sun, Ken Inness/MiLB.com)

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Wright To Make Return Tonight? http://metsmerizedonline.com/2014/07/wright-to-make-return-tonight.html/ http://metsmerizedonline.com/2014/07/wright-to-make-return-tonight.html/#comments Sat, 05 Jul 2014 16:28:02 +0000 http://metsmerizedonline.com/?p=160075 david wright

Mets Captain David Wright has been sidelined by a bruised rotator cuff for eight days now. He was originally set to make his return on Friday, but inclement weather pushed him back.

So one would assume that today would be the day that the seven time All-Star would return to the lineup. According to ESPN‘s Adam Rubin, “That’s the plan”.

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Mets Add Trio Of Venezuelan Shortstops http://metsmerizedonline.com/2014/07/mets-add-pair-of-venezuelan-shortstops.html/ http://metsmerizedonline.com/2014/07/mets-add-pair-of-venezuelan-shortstops.html/#comments Wed, 02 Jul 2014 19:36:00 +0000 http://metsmerizedonline.com/?p=159791 baseball grass spring training

Update- 4:30 p.m.

Jesse Sanchez of MLB.com is reporting that the Mets have agreed to terms with another Venezuelan shortstop, 15 year-old Kenny Hernandez, for $1 million. Hernandez is considered one of the top prospects in this year’s international pool, coming in at number 13 overall on Baseball America’s top 30 list. Here is a portion of his scouting report from MLB.com:

Scouting Grades: Hit: 60 | Power: 50 | Run: 50 | Arm: 55 | Field: 55

Why do scouts like Kenny Hernandez?

Let’s start with the fact that some evaluators believe Hernandez might have the best all-around swing in the entire class. The 6-foot, 160-pounder has good hands, strong wrists and the quick-twitch action in the batter’s box that scouts love. He also has good bat control, plate discipline and a fluid swing that reminds some people of a young Shawn Green.

The broad-shouldered teenager has gap power and ability to drive the ball to the opposite field. He has good footwork on defense, but it’s unclear if he has the overall skill set to stay at shortstop. Scouts have also praised his makeup and athleticism.

Original- 3:39 p.m.

With the July 2nd deadline to sign international players fast approaching, the Mets have been active today. They’ve added a pair of young shortstops out of Venezuela– a market they’ve been very aggressive in during past years and are expected to be once again this July.

Baseball America has done a great job reporting these signings as well as adding some info on the players which will be featured below.

Yoel Romero, who stands 6 foot, 175 pounds was signed for $300,000.

From Baseball America:

Romero moves around well at shortstop with good agility and average arm strength that plays up because of his short arm stroke and quick release. More quick than fast, he’s a fringy runner with gap power from the right side and projection to grow into more strength.

Shortly after, the Mets announced the signing of another shortstop, 16-year old Edgardo Fermin for $250,000. Fermin is 6 feet, 145 pounds.

Fermin’s game will benefit from additional strength, with solid tools that play up because of his advanced instincts and feel for the game. He’s a below-average runner with a fringy arm but is smooth at shortstop and moves around well at the position. He has shown a line-drive stroke from the right side with occasional gap power and the ability to hang in against good velocity.

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Gee to Make Next Rehab Start on Sunday with Cyclones http://metsmerizedonline.com/2014/06/dillon-gees-next-rehab-start-on-sunday-with-brooklyn-cyclones.html/ http://metsmerizedonline.com/2014/06/dillon-gees-next-rehab-start-on-sunday-with-brooklyn-cyclones.html/#comments Fri, 27 Jun 2014 12:52:46 +0000 http://metsmerizedonline.com/?p=158988 dillon gee

Dillon Gee will make his next rehab start with the Brooklyn Cyclones on Sunday at MCU Park against the Staten Island Yankees.

Gee is expected to throw 30 warm-up pitches and 55 in-game pitches as he continues to rehab from a strained right lat muscle.

Adam Rubin of ESPN New York believes he will need one more rehab start to get his pitch count up to 70-75 pitches, meaning that his earliest return to the Mets rotation could come July 9. Initially expected to miss just one start, Gee has been out of the rotation for over six weeks.

The Texas native was having perhaps his best season yet, compiling a 2.73 ERA in 52.2 innings for the Mets before injuring himself.

It’s expected, but not assured, that Daisuke Matsuzaka will move back to the bullpen once Gee rejoins the rotation.

June 24

Dillon Gee made his first rehab start on Tuesday afternoon in Jupiter Florida with the Mets Gulf Coast Team.

Gee pitched two scoreless innings allowing one hit while striking out two.  He is anticipating two more rehab starts before re-joining the Mets.

A possible timetable for a return to the rotation could be as soon as 18 days.

June 20

Mets right-hander Dillon Gee is set to begin his rehab on Tuesday, pitching for the Gulf Coast League Mets.

The 28-year old Gee, who has been sidelined with a lat strain for over a month, is expected to make several rehab starts before rejoining the Mets.

“As good as I’m feeling, it’s still disheartening to think I’m still a couple of weeks from being in a game. But it’s just about building up innings at this point. It’s kind of like spring training all over again.”

Originally expected to miss just one start, Gee pushed himself too hard to return to the mound, and set himself back.

“I’m kicking myself like crazy because if I wouldn’t have done that I would probably be back right now,” Gee said.

The Texas native was having perhaps his best season yet, compiling a 2.73 ERA in 52.2 innings for the Mets before injuring himself.

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Mets Should Sign Cuban Defector Yasmani Tomas http://metsmerizedonline.com/2014/06/mets-should-sign-cuban-defector-yasmani-tomas.html/ http://metsmerizedonline.com/2014/06/mets-should-sign-cuban-defector-yasmani-tomas.html/#comments Tue, 24 Jun 2014 13:00:25 +0000 http://metsmerizedonline.com/?p=159109 Cuba v Netherlands - World Baseball Classic Second Round Pool 1

As you may or may not know by now, Cuban outfielder Yasmani Tomas defected from Cuba recently.

Tomas, 23, is a 6’1 230-pound outfielder with monster power potential. Before his defection he’d been playing professional baseball in Cuba for Industriales. In 97 games last season for Industriales he hit .275 with 10 homeruns and 59 RBI. This season Tomas hit .290 with six homeruns in 257 plate appearances while dealing with an arm injury.

Perhaps his most impressive showing was at 2013′s World Baseball Classic, where he went 6 for 16 (.412) with two homers. After the tournament Baseball America named him the sixth best prospect in the tournament.

On the scouting side, Baseball America‘s Ben Badler says that Tomas possesses “70 raw power”, while ESPN‘s Keith Law went a little deeper:

What Tomas brings is plus power, and I don’t think it’s just BP power, as he’s very short to the ball — maybe even more so than  Jose Abreu — with good hip rotation and a very quiet approach. He keeps his head steady through contact and his back leg pretty strong. However, he has below-average bat speed, unlike Abreu (whose is average or better) or Puig (whose is just ridiculous), and I’ve had multiple scouts tell me they question Tomas’ ability to hit for average against major-league pitching.

Both Law and Badler seem to think that although he moves fairly well for a guy his size, he’ll be relegated to a corner outfield spot but should be at least average out there.

Law went on to add some projections on Tomas, as well as what kind of financial commitment it may take to sign him.

A reasonable/optimistic projection for Tomas would be an average to slightly above-average regular in left field, with 25 to 30 homers, a low OBP and below-average defense.

Tomas might get paid like Jose Abreu or Yasiel Puig, but he’s not in their class as a prospect, and if paid similarly, he would be benefiting from how successful Abreu and Puig have been.

As for the process of getting the young Cuban to the United States, Badler touched on that:

Tomas will still have to obtain residency in another country, get an unblocking license from the United States Department of the Treasury’s Office of Foreign Assets Control (OFAC) and be declared a free agent by Major League Baseball to be eligible to enter into an agreement with a club. The timetable for jumping through those hurdles varies, though it seems unlikely Tomas would sign before the end of the season and it might take him until 2015 to ultimately sign.

My Thoughts:

I think the Mets should be all-in on this young outfielder. Although he may not have the pedigree of Jose Abreu or Yasiel Puig despite carrying a similar price tag, I think it’s more than worth the risk. The days of young power-hitters reaching the free agent market are over. Teams are locking up these types of players early on. With power at a premium in MLB right now, you can afford to miss on a guy like Tomas who may never hit for average, but will provide plus pop. Just look at the spark guys like Abreu, Puig and even Yoenis Cespedes have provided for their teams. We could really use a player like that, and when you factor in that he’s young, plays a position of absolute need for us, and gives us the power we desperately need, it seems like a no-brainer. The Mets outfield ranks 22nd in MLB in HR, 23rd in SLG and 19th in ISO (Isolated Power) heading into Monday’s games.

However we all know the likely outcome– the Mets will pass on him and he’ll win Rookie of the Year for someone else.

(Photo credits: Alyson Boyer Rode and Chung Sung-Jun.)

 

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With Gee Inching Closer, Who Loses Their Spot? http://metsmerizedonline.com/2014/06/with-gee-inching-closer-who-loses-their-spot.html/ http://metsmerizedonline.com/2014/06/with-gee-inching-closer-who-loses-their-spot.html/#comments Sun, 22 Jun 2014 12:00:43 +0000 http://metsmerizedonline.com/?p=159030 New York Mets v Philadelphia Phillies

ESPN’s Joe Kaiser posed this question earlier today, and it’s an interesting one:

Whose spot will Dillon Gee take in the Mets rotation?

It appears that the two most obvious candidates are Jacob deGrom and Daisuke Matsuzaka.

deGrom, one of the Mets top pitching prospects, was promoted from Las Vegas in mid-May, has yet to notch his first win for the big club. Despite that, he has shown some flashes of brilliance in his time with the Mets, including his seven shutout innings last night that netted him his first win. However, he’s had some downs as well, with the most obvious being his previous start that saw him surrender six earned runs in 4.1 innings against the Cardinals. Overall, deGrom is 1-4 with a 3.75 ERA in 48 innings. He’s struck out 41 and walked 21 in that span.

Matsuzaka on the other hand has had success all season, whether it be coming out of the bullpen or being thrown into the rotation. Dice-K started last nights game for the Mets, and probably pitched well enough to earn a win. However as usual the Mets offense was nowhere to be found. So far in 2014, Dice-K has pitched to a 3.18 ERA in five starts and a 2.22 ERA in 17 relief appearances. All told, the 33-year old has a 2.68 ERA in 47 innings.

Manager Terry Collins weighed in on the topic:

“When Dillon comes back I think there will be discussions about a lot of guys,” Collins told Mike Puma of the New York Post. “Dillon is going to go back in the rotation and we don’t know who it is that we’re going to put back in the bullpen. There will be discussions, and when that time comes, we’ll see which names are brought up.

Collins then went on to talk about an interesting possibility– deGrom to the bullpen?

“Certainly [deGrom’s] stuff could play in the bullpen. The issue is his durability. Can he get up every day? Can he get up three days a week? That becomes the question — any time you’re looking at a young pitcher who has not pitched out of the bullpen, are they going to be able to get up and get their arm ready? And if they get up, how long is it going to take to get their arm ready, because sometimes they’ve got to speed it up.”

My Thoughts:

I think it’s been quite clear that Dice-K has been better out of the pen. Although he’s worked around them, the amount of walks he’s piled up when starting is troubling. One has to wonder how many more times he can walk that tightrope successfully. deGrom, despite his struggles, has been pretty solid. He’s 26 now, and I think it’s time to see what he’s got at the highest level for a prolonged amount of time. One of the goals of this presumably lost season has to be to determine which youngsters are going to fit in with this team going forward. If deGrom can’t hack it as a starter he can always go to the bullpen next season. But first let’s see how he handles the rotation. However Terry is managing for his job so I’m sure he’ll side with the veteran.

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