New York Mets: David Peterson is a potential impact arm for 2020

New York Mets

The New York Mets have enviable depth in their starting rotation. They have the unquestioned ace in Jacob deGrom. They have the high-upside number two in Noah Syndergaard. Marcus Stroman is the rock-solid number three, and for the last two spots, the team will have a competition between Rick Porcello, Michael Wacha and Steven Matz.

That’s six arms right there. Nowadays, MLB teams need between 8-10 arms capable of starting games adequately to navigate a season. They have to fend off fatigue, injuries, transactions, suspensions and unexpected struggles.

Fortunately, behind those six, the Mets have a very good prospect that, if things break right, might be ready to contribute in the summer. His name is David Peterson.

MLB Pipeline ranked the lefty as the seventh-best Mets prospect last season. They identify his fastball as “average in terms of velocity, as he’ll sit at 89-91 mph and touch 93,” but also praise other traits: “Few starters in the Minors can sink and command the fastball as well as he does. He combines his heater with an above-average slider that nets him whiffs as an out pitch, while his changeup, which flashes above-average, gives him a weapon against right-handed hitters. He fills out his four-pitch mix with a fringy curveball that he can throw for a strike.”

A great skillset at the Mets’ service

In other words, Peterson does not have overpowering stuff, which limits his ceiling and prevents it to reach ace upside. However, his fastball command, overall control (2.87 BB/9 in Double-A last season) and ability to get grounders (52.6 GB% in 2019) augment his floor.

The 2019 was a very positive one for the Mets prospect. He was 3-6 in 24 starts, hurling 116.0 frames. His 9.47 K/9 was an improvement of his career norm.

One of the most attractive things in Peterson’s profile is his ability to limit the long ball. The Mets could certainly use that. In his 116.0 innings, he allowed only nine home runs, or 0.70 HR/9. That’s elite and is backed by past performance.

His 3.19 FIP is a better indicator of his talent than his 4.19 ERA. Remember that minor league defenses aren’t very good and that is reflected in the numbers.

Peterson will start the season in Triple-A. However, if he shines there like he did in Double-A, Class A-Advanced and Class-A, he will could find himself helping the New York Mets secure a postseason spot by August or September.

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