New York Mets: Prospects Who Can Make an Impact

New York Mets, Andres Gimenez

Over the last few hours, the New York Mets added multiple veterans to their 60-man player pool for Spring Training 2.0. Throughout the field of players, the Mets have a small number of prospects who have a chance to make the major league roster. As the roster spots dwindle, it seems unlikely the Mets will use players within their organization to fill those spots.

Andres Gimenez is the first prospect that pops out of the Mets player pool. With the current set up of the Mets infield, he is a backup player. What he does bring is speed and an above-average glove, which is valuable for a weak defensive team. Gimenez also played exceptionally well in the Arizona Fall League, and he should make the 30-man roster. He will like to get cut when it drops to 28, but he seems to be a more reliable option than Eduardo Nunez or Jed Lowrie.

Extra Rotation Options

David Peterson is an intriguing option for the Mets because of their lack of starting pitching depth. As a left-handed pitcher, he could make the bullpen as a second left-handed reliever but projects better as a starter. If the Mets need rotation help for an extended period, it would be a better decision to turn to Peterson over Walker Lockett or Corey Oswalt. Lockett and Oswalt have career ERAs of 8.84 and 6.43, respectively. With the expectations that low, there no reason not to give Peterson the opportunity.

Kevin Smith and Franklyn Kilome are two other pitching prospects who could make an impact. While Kilome projects more as a reliever, Smith’s potential as another lefty is exciting. His 2.75 ERA through his minor league career is impressive and also serves as a better option than Oswalt and Lockett. Though only pitching less than 50 innings in double-A, he is a fringe candidate for the 30-man roster.

New York Mets: Four Players Who Should Make the 30-Man Roster

One of the rumors of the MLB’s season proposal is the expanded rosters that come with it. The potential 30-man rosters will allow the New York Mets to carry some extra depth throughout the season. Here are four players who can add the extra punch the team needs.

Drew Smith

Drew Smith had a projected timetable of April-May to return to game action from Tommy John Surgery. The extended time off should put him a position to pitch in spring training games. During his rookie season in 2018 he pitched in 27 games and had a 3.54 ERA. Smith is a very underrated part of the Mets bullpen and is still only 26 years old.

The biggest question comes in how he bounces back from the surgery. Smith has above-average stuff and the lack of urgency to pitch on back to back days with expanded rosters will help his case to make the roster. Even if he is not ready for the first month, he can play a part during the final two.

Rene Rivera

The luxury of having a third catcher is a tough decision, especially when the DH is going to be universal. Rene Rivera is the best defensive catcher in the organization and knows the pitching staff the best. He ranks over Tomas Nido, in my opinion, and hold real value with his defense.

The bat lags behind Wilson Ramos but the Mets could opt to make Ramos a DH for a majority of the season while the combination of Rivera/Nido handled a bulk of the catching. It limits the extra at-bats for Dominic Smith and Yoenis Cespedes but it helps the weakness of controlling the running game.

Daniel Zamora

With Justin Wilson as the only left-hander in the bullpen, Daniel Zamora is a clear cut candidate to land a job. He has less than 20 career innings but has shown the ability to get Bryce Harper and Freddie Freeman out. Zamora’s role changes due to the three batter minimum rule but he did a terrific job getting out hitters from both sides of the plate during spring training.

Andres Gimenez

Is Andres Gimenez ready for an everyday role? Not quite yet but the 21-year old is on the fringe of stardom. The only way he should make the big league roster is if the entire minor league season is canceled. Instead of keeping him around to wait for 2021, he will receive the major league experience.

His role would feature more pinch-running and defensive opportunities. The roster is clogged as is, but it will be enticing to put the rookie in to start a few games. Unlike most of the roster, he is an unknown commodity who has the potential we saw from Amed Rosario in the second half of 2019.

New York Mets Send Three Players To Syracuse

New York Mets, Andres Gimenez

Despite Spring Training coming to a quick end, the New York Mets are making roster cuts to prepare for the season to resume eventually. The moves were not a surprise as all three were likely going to start the season at triple-A.

The three players sent down were Andres Gimenez, Tyler Bashlor, and Ali Sanchez. Gimenez started Spring strong but faltered towards the end. He slashed .214/.290/.393 over 14 games and showcased his defensive prowess at shortstop. Though he was not hitting for average, the increased power was an encouraging sign.

Bashlor’s Home Run Issues

Bashlor still could not contain the hone run and the big innings, which hurt his 2019 campaign. Over 4.2 innings, he allowed six runs, 11 hits, and three home runs. There has always been good stuff in Bashlor’s repertoire, but he can never seem to put it all together.

Sanchez did not receive many at-bats but seemingly had no chance to take the backup catchers job over Tomas Nido or Rene Rivera. Over nine games, he only had eight at-bats and recorded a double as his only hit.

New York Mets Pick Up Second Win of Spring Against Cardinals

New York Mets, Marcus Stroman

The New York Mets and St. Louis Cardinals squared off in their fourth matchup of the Spring. Marcus Stroman and Adam Wainwright squared off against each other, both looking to improve on their first Spring outings. The Mets also feature a lineup of mostly regulars and Tim Tebow.

Stroman pitched decently, allowing two hits, one run, one walk, and struck out one over two innings of work. He allowed a first innings home run to Paul Goldschmidt, but it would be the most damage he allowed. Stroman ran into trouble in the second.  A walk, bunt single, and Dominic Smith error led to a bases-loaded, no one-out jam. Stroman induced a lineout and a double play to end the jam and complete his outing.

Big Heart and a Big Paycheck

Brandon Nimmo returned to the lineup after a health scare which forced him to miss two games. He went 1-for-2 with a run scored and also mixed in a good call on a “sun ball double.” Robinson Cano made his Spring debut as the designated hitter. He walked and flew out to center field in his only two plate appearances.

Jeff McNeil, Dom Smith, and Wilson Ramos were the other regulars who tallied hits on Friday. McNeil and Ramos are hitting .400 and .444 in the Spring, respectively. Both are picking up from where they left off in 2019.

Andres Gimenez improved on his strong start at the plate. He blasted his first home run of the Spring and is 4-for-12 at the plate. Two of his four hits have gone for extra bases. It is a promising sign for the 161-pound shortstop who has been known more for his defense than offense. Should Gimenez continue to hit the ball well, it could make the choice to send him to minor league camp harder than expected.

Tebow Struggles

It is hard to write a Mets article without leaving out the blooper from Tebow. Not only did Tebow strikeout in both of his at-bats, but he also fell flat on his face trying to secure the final out of the ball game. Tebow looked to be under the ball but tripped over his feet, and the ball lightly plopped about a foot away from the quarterback once known as mobile.

On Saturday, the Mets head to West Palm Beach to face the Houston Astros at 1:05 p.m. Steven Matz makes his second start of the Spring as he tries to secure a spot in the Mets rotation.

 

Tebow’s Homer and Davis Injury Headlines New York Mets Loss to Tigers

New York Mets, Andres Gimenez

Tim Tebow playing in New York Mets Spring Training games is already a headline in itself. When Tebow homered off Detroit Tigers reliever Alex Wilson, it is a 100 percent guarantee to throw the baseball world for a loop.

Tebow showcased his opposite-field power with a no-doubt home run to left-center field. It was his first during his Spring Training career, and it was the fourth time he reached base in eight Spring plate appearances. Expectations are meager for the 32-year old former quarterback, but we still know he has a flair for the dramatic.

Wacha’s Debut

Michael Wacha made his first Spring start. He is in a battle for the fifth starter spot and was on par with Steven Matz through their respective first starts. Wacha threw two innings, allowing two walks, a hit, and struck out two batters. The outing was not anything special but is a decent way to settle into the beginning of the Spring.

Davis Injury

The other major headline came when third baseman, J.D. Davis, left the game with a left shoulder injury. He jammed the shoulder after diving and spending a moment on the ground. Davis said, “right now it feels fine,” but also said the shoulder is weak and stiff. He will have an MRI Wednesday, but the early news is there is no damage to his rotator cuff or labrum.

This is the first injury scare of the Spring, and the MRI will give a clearer timeline on Davis. Initially, the injury seems minor, and it will likely have more of an effect on his offense over his defense.

Zamora Shines and Gimenez Struggles

Daniel Zamora is a projected minor leaguer to start the season but pitched a scoreless third inning, all against righties, where the only baserunner came from an Andres Gimenez error. Gimenez is known for his slick defense but already has two errors in the Spring.

Wednesday Preview

A couple of big names will face the villainous Houston Astros on Wednesday. Noah Syndergaard makes his first start of the Spring and has already poked at Houston’s cheating scandal during the offseason and early in camp. He is not afraid about throwing up and in, but there should be no shenanigans, especially in his first outing.

Edwin Diaz will make his long-awaited debut in his quest to regain the closer role. Justin Wilson will also throw as the combination of the three pitchers will likely be the crew to start the game.

New York Mets Have Four Prospects in MLB Pipeline’s Top 100

Though not the showing the New York Mets had hoped for, they did have four names among the top 100 prospects in baseball. All four were position players, and none of them were in the top 50, which shows the much-needed work in their farm system. Ronny Mauricio, Francisco Alvarez, Andres Gimenez, and Brett Baty are the four highly touted prospects who made the list.

Ronny Mauricio

Mauricio is a young shortstop who still has not left his teenage years yet. He has the highest ceiling of any prospect in the Mets system and is also a switch hitter. His bat still needs work, only hitting .268/.307/.357 with four home runs in A ball. Mauricio will get better as he continues to mature and grow into his 6’3″ frame. Mets fans should not expect to see him in the big leagues for at least two seasons.

Francisco Alvarez

Alvarez gives hope to an organization that can only claim Todd Hundley as the last homegrown catching prospect to pan out in the big leagues. He is another very young prospect who just turned 18 in November. Alvarez hit .312/.407/.512 with seven home runs at two different levels of rookie ball. He is still more of a hitter, but his solid arm behind the dish gives hope that he can become an all-around catcher as he continues to grow in the minors.

Andres Gimenez

It was a surprise to see Gimenez fall so low on the list. His bat did take a step back in 2019 only hitting .250/.309/.387 in double-A. Gimenez Arizona Fall League numbers showed he had something to prove at .371/.413/.586 with 15 RBIs over 18 games. He is an excellent defender at shortstop, but his bat will either propel him to success like Amed Rosario or flounder like Ruben Tejada. Much like Rosario, he does not walk often, which will force him to hit .275 with some power to have a successful career. 2020 will be a big year to show if Gimenez is ready to take the next step up to Triple-A.

Brett Baty

Baty’s first season of professional ball resulted in him hitting .234/.368/.452 with a very high strikeout rate. He barely makes the list because the expectations were higher, but his power potential keeps him on the list. His defense is still in question, but a full 2020 will give a better evaluation of his future at third base. Baty’s separates himself from other Mets prospects because of his good walk rate and 30+ home run potential.

Fangraphs New York Mets Top 31 Prospects List

Fangraphs dropped their Top 31 Prospects List for the New York Mets. It features familiar names and some that most fans are learning for the first time. Some Mets prospects could make their debuts as soon as 2020.

Prospects 1-5

  1. Ronny Mauricio (SS)

  2. Andres Gimenez (SS)

3. Mark Vientos (3B)

  1. Brett Baty (3B)

  2. Matthew Allen (RHP)

The Mets lack pitching prospects, so it is no surprise to see their top five loaded with position players. Mauricio steals away the top spot from Gimenez and is a very intriguing prospect. He has Carlos Correa’s size potential, but the power does not come as naturally. Baty and Vientos are very similar third basemen, but what they lack on defense they gain in power. Allen is an intriguing pitcher in a system that has not produced a quality starting pitcher in years. His potential is Matt Harvey pre-Tommy John and most likely a mid-rotation pitcher.

Prospects 6-10

  1. Francisco Alvarez (C)

  2. Thomas Szapucki (LHP)

  3. David Peterson (LHP)

  4. Franklyn Kilome (RHP)

  5. Shervyen Newton (SS)

Szapucki saw his velocity increase throughout 2019 as he was coming back from Tommy John Surgery. He is still another year away from getting onto a big league level, but his curveball is top-notch. Peterson will likely make his debut at some point during the 2020 season and projects to be your usual soft-tossing left-hander. Newton is the little known shortstop prospect the Mets have. His frame is already Correa-esk, but his plate discipline is an issue. He is only 20 with enough time to hone in his free-swinging ways.

Prospects 11-15

  1. Junior Santos (RHP)

  2. Josh Wolf (RHP)

  3. Endy Rodriguez (C)

  4. Kevin Smith (LHP)

  5. Jaylen Palmer (3B)

Santos is a tall drink of water at 6’8″ and is only 18-years old. His frame might still be growing large with giving him time to truly learn how to pitch because his command was an issue throughout 2019. Rodriguez is a rare catcher on the list but can play other positions on the field. His defense projects well, but the Mets have struggled with producing catchers. The best they have to show for themselves this millennium is Travis d’Arnaud. Smith is another soft-tossing lefty who looks to arrive in the bigs within the next two seasons. Nothing he throws will wow you, but he gets outs.

Prospects 16-20

  1. Adrian Hernandez (CF)

  2. Robert Dominguez (RHP)

  3. Jordany Ventura (RHP)

  4. Carlos Cortes (LF)

  5. Joshua Cornielly (RHP)

Hernandez is the first outfielder to make an appearance on the list, he struggled with injuries in 2019 and has good muscle on him being 5’9″ at 210 pounds.  Dominguez shocked many when he started to pitch in the high-90s with his fastball after the Mets signed him in July. 2020 will show if the fireballer is the real deal. Cortes will not be a star, but his unique ability to throw with both hands allows him to play multiple positions.

Prospects 21-25

  1. Jordan Humphreys (RHP)

  2. Alexander Ramirez (CF)

  3. Ali Sanchez (C)

  4. Will Toffey (3B)

  5. Freddy Valdez (RF)

Ramirez has good size for a center fielder but will be a corner guy as he continues to grow. His power could allow him to become a highly touted prospect as he learns how to become a complete hitter. Sanchez has been in the organization for years but projects to be Tomas Nido 2.0. Valdez stands at 6’3″ 215 at only 18-years old and projects to be a significant power threat as he learns how to harness his strength.

Prospects 26-31

  1. Ryler Gilliam (RHP)

  2. Desmond Lindsay (CF)

  3. Walker Lockett (RHP)

  4. Tylor Megill (RHP)

  5. Joinder Suarez (RHP)

  6. Michael Otanez (RHP)

Lindsay spend most of 2019 on the shelf with a hamstring injury and is running out of time to become a contributor. He still is figuring himself out at the plate, but the injury held him back in a progress year. Lockett saw time with the Mets in 2019, but struggled in his handful of starts. He will likely get the first opportunity to make a spot start in 2020. Megill stands at 6’7″ and has good velocity. If he pitches well enough, he could find himself with the Mets in 2020.

 

 

New York Mets Prospect Profile: Andres Gimenez

Andres Gimenez is the only top 100 prospect close to the majors in the Mets‘ system. Look out for him to make an impact in 2020.

Andres Gimenez is a top-100 prospect in baseball. Almost every single prospect ranking site can agree on that. He came into last season ranked by many as the Mets’ top prospect ahead of Pete Alonso. That’s how highly thought of Gimenez was. With a strong season he would likely have been regarded as a top-30 prospect in baseball right now.

Sadly, he didn’t have the strong season many hoped for. He struggled in his first prolonged stay at AA in 2019. He slashed just .250/.309/.387. It was an incredibly disappointing year that was marred by injury. However, a quick look at Gimenez’s slash line isn’t a fair evaluation of him.

In the second half of the season Gimenez was markedly better hitting .271/.313/.425. The low OBP is an issue, but it was a new one this year. Prior to this season Gimenez ha never had an OBP under .340. The question is whether or not this is a new trend. There is reason to believe it is.

Gimenez had a career-low walk rate in 2019, but it’s not that surprising. He’s seen his walk rate drop at every level he’s gone too. Gimenez also had a career-high strikeout rate. That one is a little surprising. His strikeout numbers have been up and down throughout his minor league career to this point. The high K-rate and low BB-rate is bad news, but hopefully one that can be mitigated.

Over the second half of last year, Gimenez struck out just 17.3% of the time. A huge drop from his season average of 21.3%. It was clear that Gimenez was getting better as the year went along. One reason for that is that Gimenez was playing a large chunk of the early season injured. After he went on the IL and came back he was refreshed and became a different player.

Gimenez carried over that play over to the Arizona Fall League. Gimenez slashed a staggering .371/.413/.586, a slash line that won Gimenez the AFL batting title.

On top of Gimenez’s emerging bat is his excellent base running ability and defense. Gimenez is one of the best defensive SS in all of minor league baseball. He is thought to have a potential gold glove caliber glove. There is no question that his defense will be above average at SS at the very least.

Gimenez is also an accomplished base stealer. In the last two seasons Gimenez stole 66 bases. The last time a Met stole 30 bases in a season was Eric Young Jr. in 2014. Gimenez could change that and add a dimension the Mets lineup has lacked for years.

Andres Gimenez will likely start the year in AA again, but it’s possible he starts in AAA. Either way he is expected to make his MLB debut in 2020. However, there is no immediate spot for him on the roster with Amed Rosario at SS and Robinson Cano at 2B. The Mets are going to need to figure out how to make room for one of their top prospects because he’s coming.

New York Mets: Drew Gagnon DFA’d

The New York Mets made a handful of roster moves over the last couple of days to bolster their 40-man roster. The most notable move was designating Drew Gagnon for assignment to make room for some of their young prospects. The move created space for four prospects to avoid the rule-5 draft in December.

Rumors said Gagnon was working out a deal to play in Korea, but there was no truth to that. There was never even a discussion with the KBO for a contract. Gagnon started strong in 2019, with a 3.21 ERA in his first 14 innings pitched. The following 9.2 innings, over four months, were brutal, he allowed ten home runs and had a 15.83 ERA.

The Mets have a week to decide if they want to trade him, place him on release waivers or attempt to pass him through outright waivers.

Who Are the Saved Prospects?

The Mets added Shortstop Andres Gimenez, pitcher Jordan Humphreys, catcher Ali Sanchez, and pitcher Thomas Szapucki to the 40-man roster. They are saved from potentially being taken in the rule-5 draft and it allows the Mets to call them up in 2020.

Gimenez is the most promising of the four prospects. At 20-years old, he slashed .250/.309/.387, which is not anything amazing, but his game elevated in the Arizona Fall League. He slashed .371/.413/.586 with two home runs and 15 RBIs. His .999 OPS was the highest of anyone in the AFL. Amed Rosario has emerged as a quality shortstop, which gives the Mets time to develop Gimenez instead of rushing him to the big leagues.

Other Mets who will be eligible for selection are pitcher Corey Taylor, first Base/catcher Patrick Mazeika and outfielder Desmond Lindsay.