Mets right-handed pitching prospect Justin Dunn rebounded from a rough 2017 season, dominating in High-A St. Lucie before a promotion to Double-A Binghamton this past season, and is now ranked as one of the Top 100 Prospects (No. 89) in baseball, according to MLB.com.
So what was the difference for the 23-year-old?
John Sickels of SB Nation points to Dunn's improved strikeout-to-walk rate and the advancement of his secondary pitches.
"He still has the impressive fastball and his control was better in general but the big difference was sharper secondaries," Sickels wrote on Oct. 5, adding that he's "more confident" now than he was before the season that Dunn can remain a starter, and that "all the trend lines are positive."
After posting a 1.56 strikeout-to-walk rate in 2017, Dunn nearly doubled it in 2018 as it rose to 3.00.
Dunn's strikeout rate also rose significantly, from 7.0 in 2017 to 10.4 in 2018.
Overall, he had a 3.59 ERA and 1.33 WHIP with 156 strikeouts in 135.1 innings (26 starts).
"Dunn shows feel for three pitches and throws from an effortless delivery, making his 93-94 mph fastball and hard-breaking slider play up," Josh Norris wrote in his latest writeup at Baseball America. "Improved fastball command and manipulation as well as enhanced feel for his changeup have made him tougher on lefthanders and more effective overall."
Dunn will likely open the 2019 season with Double-A Binghamton, but a promotion to Triple-A Syracuse could be in the cards if he excels in Double-A.
Along with Dunn, the performances of left-handed starting pitchers David Peterson (finished season with St. Lucie) and Anthony Kay (finished season with St. Lucie in his first year back after Tommy John surgery) provided a jolt to the Mets' system.
The system should receive another jolt in 2019, when highly thought of lefty Thomas Szapucki -- who missed all of 2018 due to Tommy John surgery -- returns.