Part one analyzed those players who are eligible the first time for the Rule 5 Draft. Part two will take a look at those players who had been previously eligible but were not protected by the Mets, nor were they selected by another organization. As this list is voluminous, this will just highlight some of the more notable players. The complete list of all players who must be added to the 40-man roster to protect them from the Rule 5 Draft is available at TPG Mets.
Las Vegas 51s
Stats: 135 G, 570 PA, 502 AB, 77 R, 139 H, 34 2B, 3 3B, 14 HR, 70 RBI, 18 SB, 3 CS, .277/.358/.440
After suffering from hand and wrist injuries in 2015, Urena is back to being the hitter many anticipated he would be. However, he’s a hitter without a position at the moment. He’s struggled mightily at third leaving the Mets to play him at first base. He’s also played some outfield and is listed as an outfielder on the Mets instructional league roster. With him having no position and his having played just 13 games above Single-A, the Mets should be able to retain him. Still, there may be a team out there intrigued by his bat.
Binghamton Rumble Ponies
Bashlor has a big arm and he knows how to strike out batters. The reason why the numbers don’t match his stuff is two reasons: The first is he had a high BABIP this year. The bigger issue with him is the walks. Still, with an arm like his, if the Mets don’t protect him, the team is in real danger of losing him.
Stats: 7-13, 5.35 ERA, 29 G, 29 GS, CG, 171.2 IP, 1.439 WHIP, 5.1 K/9
Like most pitchers who pitch to contact, Knapp really struggled in Las Vegas. However, when he returned to Binghamton to help that team with their postseason run, Knapp dominated going 1-0 with a 2.00 ERA and 1.037 WHIP in four starts. Overall, Knapp knows how to pitch and eventually someone is going to be interested in him joining their Major League pitching staff. It likely won’t be the Mets this offseason, but it could be another team during the Rule 5 Draft.
Oswalt put it all together this year. He had his fastball, slider and change-up all working this season leading him to being named not just the top pitcher in the Eastern League, but also the top pitcher in the Mets farm system this year. With a big season like he had, he is certainly going to entice teams into considering taking him with their Rule 5 pick. That is unless the Mets don’t protect him first.
Stats: 5-3, 1.86 ERA, 43 G, 7 SV, 58.0 IP, 0.862 WHIP, 8.5 K/9
Like many pitchers in Binghamton this year, Peterson had a great year, which is interesting because his strikeout numbers went down this year. The reason why he had a successful season in his second year in Binghamton was he attacks the strikezone with a mid 90s fastball and a good curve. Numbers like his will get noticed, but with his having made only two appearances above Double-A and his being 26, it is possible he goes unclaimed.
Stats: 101 G, 372 PA, 320 AB, 43 R, 71 H, 16 2B, 2 3B, 5 HR, 34 RBI, 35 SB, 6 CS, .222/.310/.331
In terms of defense and speed, Stuart is Major League ready. However, he is not ready offensively. While his speed and defense is a nice asset to have at the end of your bench, it is difficult to see a team taking a player who is having difficulty hitting in Double-A.
Depending on the direction the Mets want to go with the players first time eligible, the Mets will protect two or three players. That does somewhat limit the amount of players the team can protect from this group. That goes double when you consider the team needs a roster overhaul after a disappointing 2017 season.
Looking over the above list, the Mets are most likely to protect Bashlor or Oswalt with the former the more likely of the two. Given what the Mets do in other areas, the Mets may be hard pressed to keep either of these players. The caution here is if the Mets don’t protect these two players they may very well be pitching in another organization next year.