Mets Merized Online » minor league Mon, 08 Feb 2016 23:00:42 +0000 en-US hourly 1 Tyler Clippard and D’Backs Agree On Two-Year, $12.25 Million Deal Mon, 08 Feb 2016 21:13:15 +0000 tyler Clippard

Free agent reliever Tyler Clippard and the Arizona Diamondbacks have agreed on a two year deal worth $12.25 million dollars reports Ken Rosenthal of Fox Sports. The deal includes a $4 million signing bonus, and then salaries of $4.1M in 2016 and $4.15M in 2017.

Clippard, 31, went 3-0 with a 3.06 ERA and 1.052 WHIP in 32 relief appearances for the Mets last season with a 7.2 K/9. He has been baseball’s most durable reliever, tossing an MLB leading 464.1 innings over the past six seasons, while posting a 2.67 ERA with 10.1 K/9.

The Mets were reportedly interested in bringing back Clippard but only on a one year deal.

Sandy Alderson acquired Clippard from the Oakland Athletics at the trade deadline for right-handed pitching prospect Casey Meisner.

Last week, Alderson told reporters that the team was essentially done adding any new players on a major league deal and that they could still sign a couple of players on minor league deals.

He also said it was conceivable that recently acquired outfielder Alejandro De Aza could be traded this Spring. 

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Four Mets Prospects Make MLB Pipeline’s Top 100 Sat, 30 Jan 2016 16:46:38 +0000 Smith Dominic

Prospect season is coming fast and furious. MLB Pipeline released their annual top 100 prospect list Friday night on MLB Network, where minor league experts Jim Callis and Jonathan Mayo announced that LHP Steven Matz (No. 15), 1B Dominic Smith (No. 51), SS Amed Rosario (No. 79) and SS Gavin Cecchini (No. 87) were the four Mets on the list.

Dodgers SS Corey Seager, Twins OF Byron Buxton, and Nationals RHP Lucas Giolito were numbers one, two, and three on the list, respectively.

Brandon Nimmo, who was ranked No. 71 in MLB Pipeline’s midseason list, fell out of the Top 100 in 2016, after struggling with injuries and failing to progress like some /he would.

Earlier this week, Matz came in at No. 9 on Baseball Prospectus’ Top 101 list. Matz will lose his rookie/prospect eligibility when he reaches 14.1 innings pitched in 2016, hopefully he can go out in April and make two strong starts and we won’t see him on any more of these lists. Based on the nine starts Matz made last season – three of them in the playoffs – he looked every bit of what was expected. He is still yet to lose a regular season game, and had a 2.27 earned run average.

Amed Rosario (Photo by Jim Mancari)

Amed Rosario (Photo by Jim Mancari)

Smith and Rosario find themselves on MLB’s list after also appearing in Baseball Prospectus at No. 86 and No. 96 respectively. Both players are still extremely young at 20-years old and will head to Double-A Binghamton in 2016. Smith broke out in 2015 with St. Lucie, hitting .305 with 33 doubles and 79 runs batted in. The 2013 first round draft pick was named the Most Valuable Player of the Florida State League for his efforts. Smith’s teammate, Amed Rosario struggled at the plate, but showed he still has a great glove and speed. If he were to get the bat going this season, I’m sure Rosario will skyrocket up prospect lists.

It’s good to see Cecchini on this list after Baseball Prospectus left him off. Statistically, he enjoyed a solid 2015 season, hitting .315/.337/.442, and finishing third in the Mets minors with 139 hits. He was named the Rookie of the Year in the Eastern League. Because of the glut of middle infielders in the upper minors, it will be interesting to see how the Mets balance his playing time with that of Matt Reynolds and Dilson Herrera. Ideally, you would put your first round picks in the best situation to succeed, but there will be a major competition at Las Vegas for those reps.

Last year’s preseason list featured RHP Noah Syndergaard (10), C Kevin Plawecki (63), Matz (66), OF Brandon Nimmo (72), and OF Michael Conforto (82).

For more minor league coverage check out our partner site where they recently broke down the Mets Top 5 Shortstop Prospects

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Dominic Smith Receiving High Praise For His Defense Thu, 21 Jan 2016 17:00:27 +0000 Dominic_Smith_27nu1kzw_of4zataz

MLB Pipeline released their Minor League All-Defensive Team with Mets prospect Dominic Smith being selected as the first baseman. The eight man defensive team also included Minnesota Twins outfield prospect Byron Buxton, Milwaukee Brewers shortstop Orlando Arcia, and Pirates catcher Reese McGuire.

Smith has been receiving rave reviews for his defense all year from a handful of different outlets. He was named the best defensive first baseman in the Florida State League in a poll that Baseball America did in August.

What MLB Pipeline had to say about Smith:

Has great hands and footwork around the bag to go along with an accurate arm. Infielders are going to love throwing to him at the big league level.

Smith is coming off the best season of his young career in which he hit .305/.354/.417 on his way to being the Most Valuable Player in the Florida State League. He led the league with his 33 doubles and 79 runs batted in.

He hit well for the Salt River Rafters in the Arizona Fall League as well with a .362/.483/.511 slash line. He was nominated to the fall league All-Star team and part of MLB Pipeline’s All-Prospect Team for his performance in the league.

Here is what’s Bernie Pleskoff had to say about Smith and his defense after seeing him in the fall:

Smith has the throwing arm of a pitcher that can hit the mid-90s with his fastball. He has the athletic ability, range and agility to play quality first base. Smith’s reaction time and his footwork are very good around the bag.

Everyone I have talked to about Smith has raved about his defense at first base including teammates from 2015. They all talked about the luxury of having a guy at first that they knew could bail them out if they made a bad throw.

For more minor league coverage head over to including the news that Brooklyn Cyclones manager Tom Gamboa will return for 2016 season.

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Spring Training Notes: Non-Roster Invites, 44 Days Until Pitchers & Catchers Mon, 04 Jan 2016 11:00:59 +0000 spring training

According to Adam Rubin of ESPN New York, the Mets say no decision has been made yet on non-roster invites to major league camp among candidates who were with organization in 2015.

He predicts that catchers Johnny Monell and Xorge Carrillo, infielders Gavin Cecchini, T.J. Rivera, Danny Muno and Jayce Boyd, and pitchers Paul Sewald, Chase Bradford, John Church, and Zack Thornton will all get invited to big league camp this Spring.

Additionally, the Mets signed RHP Stolmy Pimentel and RHP Jim Henderson last month to minor league deals and both received spring training invites.

All players on the 40-man roster will report to big league camp including new additions OF Brandon Nimmo, RHP Seth Lugo, RHP Jeff Walters, and RHP Robert Gsellman. Of course some will eventually be assigned to minor league camp as it gets closer to Grapefruit League play.

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The Mets will open their Grapefruit League schedule on Thursday, March 3, against the Washington Nationals in Viera, Fla., at 1:05 PM Their first home game will take place on Friday, March 4, versus the Miami Marlins in Port St. Lucie at 1:10 PM.

You can check out the full 2016 Grapefruit League Schedule for the Mets by clicking here.

Only 44 days until pitchers and catchers report to Port St. Lucie, Florida, on Feb. 17. Those players will undergo physicals on Feb. 18, with the first workout for pitchers and catchers on Feb. 19.

Mets position players report on Feb. 24. Their physicals are the following day, with the first full-squad workout on Feb. 26.

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Mets Sign RHP Jim Henderson To Minor League Deal Thu, 03 Dec 2015 21:56:22 +0000 jim henderson

The New York Mets announced that they have signed RHP Jim Henderson to a minor league contract with an invite to Spring Training.

Henderson, 33, has made 111 career relief appearances with the Milwaukee Brewers between 2012 and 2014 with a 3.44 ERA and 1.125 WHIP.

In 2013, his first full season in the major leagues, Henderson saved 28 games and posted a 2.70 ERA in 61 appearances.

However, Henderson had right shoulder surgery in August of 2014 to repair his labrum and rotator cuff. He spent the 2015 season in the minors where he posted a 4.04 ERA and 1.534 WHIP in 35 appearances spanning 35.2 innings with a 8.3 K/9 and 5.0 BB/9.


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Mets Sign RHP Stolmy Pimentel To Minor League Deal Tue, 24 Nov 2015 13:01:57 +0000 Pimentel stolmy

The Mets have signed RHP Stolmy Pimentel to a minor league contract with an invite to Major League Spring Training, the team announced.

Pimentel, 26, made eight relief appearances for the Rangers in 2015, posting a 3.97 ERA, and 1.235 WHIP in 11.1 innings with seven strikeouts.

He made 17 appearances including 12 starts for Triple-A Round Rock this year and posted a 5.44 ERA and 1.660 WHIP in 71.2 innings.

Pimentel has a 4.39 ERA and 1.350 WHIP in three cups of coffee in the majors spanning 53.1 innings pitched for the Pirates and Rangers.

He is currently pitching for the Estrellas de Oriente in the Dominican Winter League and a 3.18 ERA and 1.41 WHIP in 5.2 innings. He left his last outing with a possible injury and was headed to an MRI on his throwing arm, the Estrellas reported he will not pitch again this winter.

Just a minor league depth signing…. Nothing to get excited or twisted about…

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Conforto Will Continue To Sit Against LHP Wed, 23 Sep 2015 17:03:24 +0000 michael Conforto

Michael Conforto has had an incredible rookie campaign, batting .284 with a .360 OBP and .892 OPS in 161 plate appearances since his promotion from Double-A Binghamton on July 25. His production has also been a significant part of the Mets’ offensive resurgence as his 11 doubles, eight homers and 23 RBI would attest.

However, most of that production has come against right-handed pitching and for the time being, that’s exactly how Terry Collins said it would remain. The Mets’ skipper has no plans to start Conforto against left-handed pitching for the rest of this year.

“I don’t think at this particular moment, there’s a lot he can do to change it,” manager Collins told “We kind of like everything that’s happened here with the mixing and the matching. It keeps everybody active, keeps everybody kind of sharp.

“There are some people here whose job is to hit left-handed pitching,” Collins said. “Down the road, this kid will be one of them, but right now I think we’ll stick with what we’ve done.”

Anthony DiComo points out that in the postseason, Collins will continue operating with the same playbook, even in a likely showdown with the Los Angeles Dodgers in the NL Divisional Series.

The Dodgers could very well use four lefties in five games against the Mets: Clayton Kershaw twice, and Brett Anderson and Alex Wood once apiece. The one game Conforto could start would be against this season’s potential Cy Young award winner Zack Greinke.

The problem isn’t that Conforto can’t hit lefties, he’s hit them very well throughout his college and minor league career. But with Michael Cuddyer on the team and still owed $11.5 million next season, playing time against left-handed pitching will be hard to come by for the 22-year old rookie for the time being. However, look for that to change in 2016.


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MMO Exclusive: T.J. Rivera Just Keeps Hitting and Hoping Wed, 09 Sep 2015 15:00:57 +0000 t.j. Rivera

When his baseball playing days are behind him, T.J. Rivera wants to be remembered as a grinder, a guy who didn’t simply go through the motions but played with 100 percent effort every time he stepped on a baseball diamond.

“That’s something I’ve always tried to live up to, going out there and playing hard every pitch,” Rivera stated in his final response during an interview I conducted with him on our WIOX, Tip-Off Sports radio hour.

You won’t get an argument about Rivera’s work ethic from Binghamton Met baseball fans who have watched the popular B-Met play three of the four infield positions during parts of the past two baseball seasons. Going into the final weekend of the regular season, Rivera leads the B-Mets in batting with a sparkling .350 batting average.

Amazingly, Rivera’s lofty BA is actually 8 points lower than his team high mark in the batter’s box in 2014. Over two seasons, in 415 B-Met at-bats, Rivera has 147 hits. That’s a combined two year Double-A batting average of .354.

And, in nearly 200 at-bats for Triple-A Las Vegas this summer Rivera was slashing at the plate. On July 18th, Rivera went 3-for-5 against Albuquerque raising his batting average to .327. A mini slump, 3-23, in the 8 games before his recall to Binghamton, dropped his Triple-A hitting stats to .306.

Putting it simply, T.J. Rivera can hit. With numbers echoing the batting line outlined above on every rung of the Met’s minor league ladder, it’s not surprising Rivera takes a bit of swagger into the batting box. I asked T.J. about his batting approach.

“It really depends on the situation,” he began. “With a guy on third base, you’re trying to do something different to what you’d do with no one on. You’re also just trying to hit the ball hard.”

Rivera went on to say that in every at bat he’s trying to compete with the pitcher. “Early in the count, I’m just trying to find a good fastball in the middle of the zone, something I can drive and something I can really put a good swing on and hopefully hit the ball in a gap somewhere.”

“With a strike or two strikes my approach will change a little bit. My swing doesn’t change but my approach does. With two strikes, I’m going to let the ball get a little deeper. The pitcher’s got a different approach, too, he’s trying to extend the zone a little. So, I have to change my approach and work a little harder to compete.”

“I don’t want to just put the ball in play with two strikes, I want to put it in play hard and make something happen. Obviously, everything changes with guys on base.”

Since T.J, has played at every level in the Mets minor league system, I asked him if there is a specific batting approach or philosophy emphasized in the Met farm system all the way up the minor league chain.

“I wouldn’t say anything too crazy that other teams are not doing. They do like us working the count. They like us to swing at pitches in the zone, and I think any club would probably think the same thing, because you don’t want to help the pitcher out.”

“They’re trying to teach us to find the pitch we like to hit and where in the zone we like to hit the ball best. Then try to hit that pitch and that pitch only until you get two strikes. You don’t want to swing at the pitch the pitcher wants you to. That ends up in a weak ground ball that you’re not looking to do.”


Hitting the way he has year after year, apparently, T.J. Rivera is an attentive student. I asked him too about the difference in the pitching he has experienced as he climbed the Met minor league ladder.

“As you move up to Double-A and Triple-A you’re not going to get as many hitter’s counts where you can get the pitch you’re looking for, So, selective hitting plays a bigger role, because now if I don’t get the pitch I’m looking for and I swing at a pitch too low, I’m not going to do what I want at the plate.”

As Rivera sees it, stronger bullpens at the upper minor league levels also add to the batting challenge. “The bullpens get a lot better, too. It’s like every team has a lot of hard throwers and good arms in the bullpen. Other than that, pitchers at the upper level know how to pitch, so as you get older, you have to get smarter.”

Rivera said that the Marlins’ Jose Fernandez is one of the toughest pitchers he has faced so far in the minors. “You kind of knew he was going to be special.” Ironically, although he has faced some outstanding minor league prospects, it’s many times those crafty pitchers that change speeds in different ways that give him the most trouble.

As far as strong pitchers go, Rivera likes the guys in the Mets system most. “The guys on my teams, they’re the ones who impress me more than anybody, a guy like Steven Matz. I had to face him in spring training and that’s not fun. Noah Syndergaard, I had to face him, too.”

“Guys like that are overpowering. They throw the kind of stuff you’re expecting to see in the ninth inning from a closer, but they’re throwing it for 6 or 7 innings.”

T.J talked about the subtle differences in playing the various infield positions. At shortstop he said he has to remember to move his feet, to get to the ball with his feet because his throw from short is the longest you will make in the infield. Manning third base is about reflexes and handling the hot stuff and knowing the speedsters most likely to place a bunt perfectly down the line. He finds second base a bit easier because of the added time, but coming across the bag and throwing across your body with a sliding runner coming at you makes the turn on a double play an added challenge.

I mentioned that the middle infield slots seems to be the strongest position spots in the Met farm system and asked T.J. to talk briefly about some of his teammates who have played there. Here’s what he said.

Matt Reynolds – Consistent defensive play. He has a nice swing, but he really impresses me defensively at short.

Dilson Herrera – He’s an animal. That kid is a little ball of fire. He’s kind of like Darrell Cecilaini in that he ignites a team because he plays so hard. Sometimes you see a top prospect who kind of goes through the motions. He’s not like that. You’d never think he’s a top prospect because of the way he plays. You’ve got to love the way he goes about his business.

Wilfredo Tovar – Great hands. Smooth defensively. He’ll do some things with his glove that kind of wow you on the field and you’ll think – did that just happen? Great hands.

Daniel Muno – Nothing phases him. He’s the type of guy you can put in a tough situation because nothing phases him.

Gavin Cecchini – He’s impressed me with his stick, and he goes about his business the right way. He plays the game pretty well, pretty hard, and he’s impressed me this year a lot.

L.J. Mazzilli – He’s my roomie, a grinder on the baseball diamond. He knows how to play the game. He hits the ball consistently, and he’s got a really good swing. He hits the ball hard all over the place. He knows how to hit the ball hard to right-center field. That’s impressive.

Met fans always mention that Rivera went undrafted. T.J. told me the Mets called about a week after the draft to discuss his signing on. His humble introduction to professional baseball is a motivator. “There’s a lot that motivates me. For guys that went undrafted, it would be nice to show, we can play the game, too, and to never give up hope.”

Chatting with T.J. on the air and briefly following him this week at NYSEG Stadium, I can only hope he gets a shot and gets a chance at the big leagues. He’s earned it.

“If this kid ever gets a look in the majors, I know he’s going to hit,” said B-Mets GM Jim Weed, who has watched a lot of prospects over the years at Binghamton and the rest of the Eastern League. My sentiments exactly.


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Mets Nearly Traded Jacob deGrom For Kelly Shoppach Wed, 22 Jul 2015 13:42:50 +0000 jacob deGrom

In his first start since striking out the side on 10 pitches in an electric All-Star Game performance, Jacob deGrom delivered a gem against the first place Nationals en route to a huge 7-2 win for the Mets.

Despite one bad pitch that catcher Wilson Ramos turned on for a two-run homer, deGrom went six solid innings allowing two just three hits with eight strikeouts and one walk.

“I would say I was a little amped up tonight to get out there,” deGrom said. “But I take every game the same. I want to put us in position to win and put up zeroes.”

However, despite tossing just 82 pitches, Terry Collins decided to pinch-hit for the Mets ace in the top of the seventh inning with the team down by a run and needing a critical hit with the tying and winning runs on base.

While the move was met with shock and awe, it worked brilliantly as pinch hitter Eric Campbell came through with a two-run single to put the Mets up 3-2.

“This is a baseball game. It’s not about one guy. It’s not about Jake deGrom giving us two more innings,” Collins said afterward.

“In a game you’re behind by a run and you have runners at second and third and the pitcher’s up, you’ve got to pinch hit. You’ve got to trust your bullpen. You’ve got to trust your guy off the bench. But that’s how you play the game.”

DeGrom didn’t question the move and was thrilled that it paid off and resulted in his 10th win of the season. “This was a huge win for us.”

His strong effort resulted in a 2.18 ERA and 0.903 WHIP for the young righty with 120 strike outs and only 21 walks in 119.2 innings pitched this season.

I will leave you with this last little tidbit on Jacob deGrom by way of veteran baseball guru, Peter Gammons.

“In May, 2012, the Red Sox were working on a deal with the Mets for catcher Kelly Shoppach. Ben Cherington asked Sandy Alderson for a soon-to-be 24-year-old righthanded pitcher in the Florida State League who had missed the 2011 season after surgery.”

“The name? Jacob deGrom. Alderson seemed comfortable with the original idea, but checking with his minor league people caused him to tell Cherington he had second thoughts. So, finally, Boston received Pedro Beato.”

Hahaha…Have a great day Mets fans!

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How Mets Minors Can Affect Their Younger Hitting Prospects Fri, 10 Jul 2015 10:00:53 +0000 sandy alderson paul DePodesta

Due to their consistent offensive struggles and the possibility that Michael Cuddyer could end up on the disabled list, the Mets desperately need more bats. However, it doesn’t seem like a trade for a hitter is coming anytime soon.

Once again, the Mets will probably look to their farm system for offensive help. It might not be as deep as their pitching was, but they have some potential future stars awaiting at Double-A Binghamton.

Which brings me to an interesting article I read by Ken Davidoff of the New York Post, who spoke to Mets VP of Player Development, Paul DePodesta.

DePo spoke about why so many of the organization’s draft picks out of high school struggle so much to begin their careers. Prospects like Brandon Nimmo, Gavin Cecchini and Dominic Smith.

“In all candor, our system is not set up for high school position players to be successful,” said DePodesta. 

“(Short-Season Single-A) Brooklyn is tough. So is (Low-A) Savannah. Not until they get to Double-A (Binghampton) is it neutral.”

“They are not going to put up great numbers. They just aren’t. They aren’t in environments that are conducive to that. This is the reality. We tell them, ‘We don’t expect you to put up huge numbers. The numbers will come.”

One example is Cecchini, who was drafted in the first round of the 2012 draft out of high school. Last year with Savannah, he only had 3 home runs. Now this year, he has six home runs for Binghamton. It’s still not overwhelming power numbers but it shows progress.

Baseball America associate editor Matt Eddy bought up an interesting stat line of minor league ballparks and compared the overall ballparks to the Mets minor league ballparks.

He determined that 92% of minor league ballparks feature more runs per game than Savannah. For High-A St Lucie, it dropped to 64%. Then 49% for Binghamton.

Once they get to hitter’s park Cashman Field in Las Vegas, it’s 4%. So the Mets minor league position players pathway gets easier as they move up.

When DePodesta was asked if this  concerned hitters development mentally, he said: “Not necessarily. It hasn’t negatively impacted the final product. To some degree, it’s hardened them and forced them to become more complete hitters along the way.”

“If we see evidence that it’s beaten guys down, we’ll reconsider. But it’s played out as we thought it might. These guys are all showing that they haven’t suffered negatively from it.”

On the other hand, Mets pitching prospects all start out easy and it gets tougher as they move on through the system.

“Which may actually be advantageous to some degree,” said DePodesta. “A young pitcher, he may need to get away with a little more. They need to get away with a little more. They need to get more fine. It gives them a lot of confidence to attack the strike zone early in their careers, and then they face the ultimate test in the (Pacific Coast League).”

It was pretty interesting to hear his take on this and it does explain a lot about some of the struggles we’ve seen with the high school selections.


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Mets Activate Daniel Murphy, Option Dilson Herrera To Triple-A Tue, 30 Jun 2015 18:25:55 +0000 daniel murphy

The Mets announced that infielder Daniel Murphy has been activated from the Disabled List and second baseman Dilson Herrera has been optioned to Las Vegas (AAA).

This was widely expected. Murphy will resume playing third base while David Wright remains out.

June 28

Infielder Daniel Murphy, who was initially expected to return from the disabled list this weekend, is now expected to return on Tuesday, Terry Collins told reporters on Saturday.

While playing third base, Murphy went 2-for-4 on Saturday with a double and two RBI for High-A St. Lucie.

Over his last two rehab games he is 6-for-9 with three doubles, two runs scored, and four RBI.

“We’re hoping that he’s ready to come up, and that he’ll be here on Tuesday,” Collins said. “We’ll certainly keep a close eye on how he feels and give him a shout in the morning and see where he’s at.”

June 26

Daniel Murphy busted out with a big night during his third rehab game for High-A St. Lucie.

Murphy went 4-for-5 with a double, two RBIs and two runs scored in what could be his final tuneup before rejoining the Mets.

Sandy Alderson and Terry Collins both pointed to tonight’s game as a determining factor in whether Murphy would be activated from the DL.

“This is a guy we’d like to have now,” the Mets GM said. “However, it’s a day-to-day proposition.”

No. 28 has been on the disabled list with a strained quadricep since June 5, and the Mets could really use his bat in the lineup right now.

Hopefully we’ll see him on Saturday, or Sunday at the latest.

June 24

Daniel Murphy began his rehab assignment with the Gulf Coast League Mets on Wednesday, and had a hit and a walk in two plate appearances before the game was postponed in the fourth inning due to rain.

Murphy started at third base, where he is expected to play once he’s activated from the DL this weekend when the Mets return home to host the Cincinnati Reds.

The former All Star has been on the DL with a strained quadricep muscle since June 5. He was hitting .283 with four HR and 29 RBI and in the midst of torrid hot streak before he was injured.


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MMO Game Thread: Reds vs Mets, 4:35 PM Sun, 28 Jun 2015 20:03:39 +0000 steven matz

The New York Mets and Cincinnati Reds will resume Saturday night’s suspended game at 1:10 PM with the score tied at one apiece and the Reds batting in the top of the seventh.

After the conclusion of that game, top pitching prospect Steven Matz will make major league debut against the Cincinnati Reds at Citi Field, opposite fellow rookie Josh Smith (0-0, 12.00 ERA).

The Mets will make a corresponding roster move for activating Steven Matz on Tuesday as MLB granted them permission to have 26 players due to suspended game.

Matz, who will wear #32, was 7-4 with a 2.19 ERA in 15 games, 14 starts for Las Vegas (AAA) this year. He leads the Pacific Coast League in ERA and strikeouts, is tied for first in wins and is third in opponents’ batting average against (.213).

Matz, 24, was the Mets second-round pick in the 2009 First-Year Player Draft from Ward Melville (NY) High School and he will become the 999th player in team history.

Mets Starting Lineup

  1. Curtis Granderson, rf
  2. Ruben Tejada, ss
  3. Lucas Duda, 1b
  4. Wilmer Flores, 2b
  5. Darrell Ceciliani, cf
  6. John Mayberry, lf
  7. Johnny Monell, c
  8. Eric Campbell, 3b
  9. Steven Matz, lhp

Yesterday the Mets tried really hard to get the game in with the rain. I was there and I’ve never seen that much rain at a ballgame with the teams still playing. My guess is it was a combination of the Steve Miller concert plus the Reds only coming to town once this season.

Anyway, Harvey pitched great and Granderson provided the only run of offense (and his dropped ball in the outfield led to the Reds only run, so whatever). After the Mets and Reds finish this game at 1:10 PM, it will be the battle of two rookies at Citi Field.

Over the off-season Wally Backman told Mets fans at the second annual Queens Baseball Convention that Matz is the one pitcher in the Mets system that he feels is the unhittable one.

The Mets bats will get another rookie today in Josh Smith. Smith will be making his second major league start after allowing 4 ER and 6 walks over 3.0 innings in his major league debut. Across three minor league levels this year he made 13 starts with a 3.04 ERA in 74.0 innings of work.

Let’s Go Mets!

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Morning Grind: Logan Verrett Impresses In Mets Debut Fri, 19 Jun 2015 14:04:55 +0000 Logan Verrett

After a head scratching move earlier this week that saw the Mets’ brass promote Akeel Morris from Single-A St. Lucie straight to the big leagues, the team righted the ship by demoting Morris to Double-A Binghamton after he surrendered five runs in two-third’s of an inning in Wednesday night’s loss to the Toronto Blue Jays.

“It’s what you dream of,” Morris said.  ”To get up there and pitch in the big leagues. It didn’t go the way that I drew it up. It happens. You shake it off and get back at it next time.”

To replace Morris, who made it abundantly clear that he wasn’t ready, the Mets subsequently called up Logan Verrett from Triple-A Las Vegas, who has definitely racked up some frequent flyer miles to start off his rookie campaign.

The Mets left him off the 40-man roster at the conclusion of last season, exposing him to the Rule 5 draft, where he was picked up by the Baltimore Orioles.

Verrett was then claimed off waivers by the Texas Rangers, whom he made his major league debut for, before being returned to the Mets last month.

For the 51′s this season, Verrett was 2-0 with 3.00 ERA in 11 games (4 as a starter). In his minor league career, Verrett is 30-13 with a 3.83 ERA in 80 games (73 as a starter).

“I know he throws strikes, and that’s been the key,” Terry Collins said

“This guy knows how to pitch. He knows how to use his stuff. He’s got an outstanding breaking ball. We’re hoping that he gives us a right-hander down there who will throw the ball over the plate.”

“If somebody needs a day off or we’re getting deep in a game and we need someone who can give us multiple innings, he’s the perfect guy.”

Used primarily as a starter in the minors, Verrett surely impressed in his Mets debut out of the bullpen Thursday night, and was certainly the silver lining to an otherwise horrendous game that saw the Mets muster up a dismal one run on three hits, and saw Bartolo Colon get shelled after Wilmer Flores failed to catch what looked like a routine line drive.

Entering the game in the bottom of the seventh, Verrett pitched two scoreless innings, recording four strikeouts.

In what has become a very taxed and heavily depleted bullpen, Verrett will look to solidify himself as a reliable reliever in the wake of all the injuries the Mets have had this season.

What we saw Thursday was impressive, and hopefully Verrett can seize this opportunity in the big leagues this time around after having a bit of a rough time in Texas to start the season.

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Matz Fires Seven Scoreless Innings Thu, 18 Jun 2015 10:39:10 +0000 steven matz

Steven Matz‘s dominance continued last night for Triple-A Las Vegas. He pitched seven shutout innings while allowing just four hits and striking out five.

Matz was simply overpowering, and he even got stronger as the game progressed. He retired the final ten batters that faced him before being pulled in the eight inning at 87 pitches.

Matz now improves his record to 7-4 and his ERA to an excellent 2.11. This mark ranks as the best in the entire Pacific Coast League, and he is also tops in the league in strikeouts with 86.

Even though the Mets are faced with a logjam in the rotation, they really need to find a spot for Matz at this point. With such impressive numbers, it’s clear that he is MLB ready and deserving of a promotion. The super two deadline has likely passed, so there’s no longer any justification for keeping down in the minors.

Maybe it’s not realistic to expect Matz to dominate as he has right away in the majors, but he should still be a likely upgrade over the struggling Jon Niese and his 4.21 ERA.

While taking out the established veteran will be a controversial move, it’s one the Mets need to make. Matz now gives the team a better chance to win.

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Vic Black and Eric Goedell Not Close to Returning Tue, 16 Jun 2015 16:09:25 +0000 vic_black_1280_34sphmp6_e19wpifx

Reliever Vic Black, who has not pitched for the Mets at all so far this year due to a shoulder issue, has had another setback in his rehab recently, according to GM Sandy Alderson.

This time it’s the groin that’s been bothering Black and he’s been unavailable to pitch for Triple-A as a result.

Black has pitched for three different minor league levels during his rehab assignment and overall is 0-2 with a 5.25 ERA in 12 innings pitched. He’s had trouble with his velocity which has prevented him from joining the Mets bullpen.

Eric Goedell, who recently went on the DL Friday with an elbow strain, met with a doctor and is heading to Port St Lucie, Florida for rehab.

According to Alderson, the MRI “is inconclusive at this point” and that it would take another 7-10 days before a clearer call can be made on Goedell’s elbow.

Goedell has had multiple surgeries on the same elbow in the past, so it is difficult to determine what the exact problem is.

Before he got hurt, Goedell was one of the surprises for the Mets this season, sporting a 1.96 ERA in 22 appearances.

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Bobby Parnell Back With The Mets Wed, 10 Jun 2015 06:00:29 +0000 bobby parnell

The Mets announced that reliever Bobby Parnell will rejoin the Mets on Wednesday and then be activated from the DL within a few days.

Parnell had a 30-day rehab clock in the minors that was set to expire, and because he has more than five years of service time in the majors,  he could have refused an assignment to the minors.

He appeared in his final rehab game on Tuesday for Double-A Binghamton and tossed a scoreless inning albeit with a walk, a hit batter and wild pitch.

Overall, the numbers for Parnell in 15 rehab appearances are not good, posting a 11.57 ERA over 14 innings and getting tagged for 22 hits, 14 walks, three wild pitches and two hit batters.

Additionally, his fastball velocity is far below his norm, averaging about 92 mph.

Despite his subpar numbers, the Mets hope that he can soon find his form while with the big league team.

“You don’t know until he gets here,” Terry Collins said. “He may amp it up and pitch at 95, 96 a little bit. So he might have it still. But we won’t know until he’s here.”

As for his role, Collins added, “I think I’ll just get him in there and let him get his feet wet again.”

Parnell, the team’s former closer, last pitched in the majors on Opening Day in 2014, then underwent Tommy John surgery eight days later.

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D’Arnaud’s Return To Be Delayed By Bone Bruise In Wrist Fri, 29 May 2015 22:12:27 +0000 travis d'arnaud

Update, May 29

Travis d’Arnaud now reportedly has a bone bruise in his right wrist, which will delay his return to the Mets.

d’Arnaud recently felt discomfort while swinging. He saw a hand specialist in Florida and will stay in St. Lucie for the time being.

May 26

Big step forward for Travis d’Arnaud  who played and caught five innings in an extended spring training game this afternoon in Port St. Lucie.

D’Arnaud went 1-for-3 at the plate with a run scored and by all accounts looked good.

He is now slated to begin his rehab assignment with Adv-A St. Lucie on Wednesday and eventually wrap things up with Triple-A Las Vegas by the weekend.

The plan is to activate d’Arnaud next week when the Mets play the Padres in San Diego.

May 25

Travis d’Arnaud will play five innings in an extended spring training game on Tuesday, according to general manager Sandy Alderson.

After that, the plan is for d’Arnaud to begin a rehab assignment beginning in St. Lucie and advancing to Triple-A Las Vegas in the course of five-to-six days.

Assuming no setbacks, the goal is for d’Arnaud to return next week when the Mets travel to San Diego to play the Padres.

D’Arnaud was hitting .317/.356/.537 with two home runs and 10 RBI in 41 at-bats before his injury.

May 25

Mets catcher Travis d’Arnaud is expected to begin a minor-league rehab assignment during the middle of this week, according to Adam Rubin of ESPN New York.

D’Arnaud, 26, has been participating in batting practice since Friday and continues to make progress sine beginning baseball activities last week.

He has been on the disabled list since April 19, when he suffered a fractured pinkie after being hit by a pitch from Marlins reliever A.J. Ramos.

D’Arnaud was hitting .317/.356/.537 with two home runs and 10 RBI in 41 at-bats before his injury.

Terry Collins has hinted that Kevin Plawecki will likely be on his way back to Triple-A Las Vegas when d’Arnaud returns.


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Bobby Parnell Is Still Struggling Wed, 20 May 2015 13:30:46 +0000 bobby parnell

So far on his road to recovery, Bobby Parnell has really struggled in his minor league rehab appearances. He is mainly struggling with his command and more concerning, his velocity. There is still no timetable for his return.

On Tuesday, Parnell gave up 3 runs and 4 hits in 1 1/3 innings in a extended spring training game in Florida. His fastball has been in the lower 90s, mainly 91 mph, which is lower than his usual high 90s.

“I don’t have a real concern about it,” Sandy Alderson told Anthony DiComo of “I just think we need to be realistic and not push him too hard, because ultimately, the goal is to have Bobby back and effective at the Major League level. Simply being back isn’t really enough.”

Parnell was initially expected to come back in mid-April, but has been suffering from setbacks, mainly in his forearm which shut him down for five days at one point. He underwent an MRI and the results showed no structural damage. However he has not been able to regain his normal velocity and speed on his fastball.

This is a concern now. Parnell has always been a hard thrower, even cracking 100 mph on his fastball. He clearly is not himself yet and unless he can throw in the mid to upper 90s, he is far from ready.

The Mets have been banged up and Parnell is one of their key relievers. But his slow recovery is adding some concern and the fact that it’s taking so much longer than expected. It’s definitely frustrating especially since we know what Parnell can do on the mound when he’s healthy. We’ll just have to continue to stay patient and hope for that increased velocity and a quick return.

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Vic Black Believes He Won’t Need Surgery Thu, 23 Apr 2015 04:32:20 +0000 vic black

Mets right handed reliever Vic Black was at Citi Field with his Mets teammates, but he is still not close to coming back from the DL.

Black has been taken out of minor league rehab appearances while being treated for a mildly herniated disk on the right side of his neck. It’s causing him nerve irritation.

In his last rehab game, Black’s fastball was only 88 to 90 mph, well off from where he usually throws. It was down 5 mph from his previous rehab appearance for Double-A Binghamton.

Black admitted that he felt tingling on the night of that rehab appearance. But he said that his shoulder is improving and that the herniated disk in his neck is also getting better than it was at the end of last season.

As a result, Black is ruling out surgery as an option. “That doesn’t seem to be even a thought,” said Black.

He will take another week off and then resume throwing most likely on flat ground.

“They were telling me my triceps wasn’t firing completely, which of course causes all the other issues that we felt like were shoulder for so long,” said Black.

This would be great news for the Mets if he can avoid surgery which could possibly get him ready to throw on the mound probably sometime in May if all goes well.


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Mets Promote Kevin Plawecki, Hansel Robles Following Injuries Sun, 19 Apr 2015 21:38:38 +0000 kevin plawecki

According to Mets general manager Sandy Alderson, the team has promoted their #2 top prospect Kevin Plawecki and their #22 top prospect Hansel Robles in the wake of the injuries to Travis d’Arnaud and Jerry Blevins during today’s game against the Marlins.

Kevin Plawecki, a Mets first round pick in 2012, was “very close to being major league ready, even before the injury.” stated Alderson. Plawecki is only 8-for-35 with zero home runs and six RBI’s this season at Triple-A Las Vegas, but has been outstanding for the majority of his minor league career up until this point.

He owns a .293/.368/.436 slash line over the span of three seasons since being drafted. Last year, between Double-A Binghamton and Vegas, Plawecki hit .309/.365/.460 in 101 games. He is a highly regarded prospect, and his call-up now makes sense more than ever.

Alderson had previously stated that Plawecki would be called on should d’Arnaud miss significant time. Well, it looks like that time has arrived.

Plawecki will take over as the Mets regular catcher according to Terry Collins

Congratulations, Kevin, looking forward to seeing you make your debut on Tuesday.

hansel robles

The player who will be taking Blevins’ spot in the bullpen is righty Hansel Robles. Robles has started much of his minor league career, but transitioned to a reliever last season. He had a very dominant playoff performance for the B-Mets last year, and continued that with a solid campaign in the Dominican Winter League. has this to say about Robles…

“After a dominant season in the New York-Penn League in 2012, the Mets added Robles to the 40-man roster. He battled injuries and a drop in velocity in 2013 and was taken off the roster. He started the 2014 season in the Double-A rotation, but was moved to the bullpen in July. By the Eastern League playoffs, Robles was throwing a 94-97 mph fastball and an 89 mph slider. And he was throwing both for strikes, making him virtually unhittable.

That continued with a dominant turn in the Dominican Winter League and the Mets had to put him back on the 40-man roster or risk losing him in the Rule 5 Draft. His days as a starter now over, Robles profiles very well as a power-armed short reliever, one who is basically big league ready.”

Robles has appeared in five games for the 51′s so far in 2015, and hasn’t allowed a run over a span of 7.2 innings pitched. He’s also struck out ten batters and has a .207 BAA. Congratulations to you as well, Hansel! Let’s see what you got!


I am excited to see Plawecki, no doubt, however I wish it weren’t under these circumstances. It sucks that d’Arnaud, who finally looked like had everything coming together for him both defensively and offensively, goes down with a fractured hand. Horrible.

Well, it’s good to have depth. And if nothing else, we get to see what Plawecki is capable of, in light of the situation. He’s a very talented player, and I think the Mets definitely made the right call promoting him. It was the right time.

As for Robles, I don’t know much about him, but I’ve heard his name thrown around over the years.

He really turned it on last season after being moved to the bullpen, and has looked go so far this year. I was expecting a lefty, but I guess the Mets are going to stick with what they got in Alex Torres and Sean Gilmartin.

Despite the bad news today, I still really have a good feeling about the Mets and this season. This team is resilient and I believe very capable of overcoming adversity. It’s just a different feeling with this group of guys. They’re all in, and I love it.

Things happen in baseball, it’s an unpredictable game, but you can’t cry over spilled milk. You have to roll with the punches and keep fighting. Like my dad always told me: “There’s no crying in baseball.”

Let’s Go Mets!

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