Mets 3B prospect Mark Vientos has one of the brightest futures among all players in the team's farm system. At just 19 years old, he is already with Low-A Columbia, and could be on track to reach the majors as early as 2021.
Weight: 185 lbs
MLB Pipeline Mets Prospect Ranking: 3
2019 Statistics: .256 batting average, .311 on-base percentage with nine doubles, five home runs and 18 RBI in 46 games.
Mark Vientos was born in Pembroke Pines, Florida, and attended the very well-regarded American Heritage High School in Plantation, which has produced 23 players to play baseball professionally. The most notable names with big league experience are Eric Hosmer, Magglio Ordonez, Deven Marrero and Adrian Nieto. It also has recent high draft picks Triston Casas and C.J. Chatham of the Boston Red Sox and Zack Collins of the Chicago White Sox.
Vientos was a highly regarded prospect whom Perfect Game named a preseason All-American in 2015, 2016 and 2017. Perfect Game also ranked him as the best high school player in the state of Florida and the 16th-ranked player in the nation in 2017. Going into his final year of high school, it appeared Vientos was destined to be a first-round draft pick, but he had a quad injury that led to him having an up and down spring at American Heritage.
When the 2017 MLB draft came, Vientos was selected by the Mets in the second round, 59th overall. He had a tough a decision whether to sign, as he grew up a die-hard fan of the University of Miami and had committed to Miami. The Mets paid an over-slot bonus for Vientos to convince him to bypass college and start his professional career.
With the Mets
The Mets immediately sent Vientos to Port St. Lucie after they signed him, as he started his pro career with the rookie-level Gulf Coast League Mets. He played in 47 games for the GCL Mets, hitting .259 with a .316 on-base percentage, 12 doubles, four home runs and 24 RBI. The Mets were satisfied with his growth in his short time with the GCL Mets and decided to let him get a four-game run with the rookie level Kingsport Mets, which is a step up in average age of competition despite also being rookie ball.
In 2018, the Mets had to decide whether to be aggressive and send Vientos to Low-A Columbia or keep him back in extended spring training and consider him going back to Kingsport or to Brooklyn. The Mets chose the latter, and he spent the entirety of his 2018 summer with Kingsport. He took a huge step forward, and at 18 years old he hit .287 with a .389 on-base percentage with 12 doubles, 11 home runs and 52 RBI in 60 games played. He was tied for fourth in the Appalachian League in home runs, fifth in walks and tied for 11th in doubles. He made some alterations in his swing, which allowed him to more consistently have high exit velocities on his batted balls.
The season he had with Kingsport led ESPN's Keith Law to rank him as the 60th best prospect in baseball prior to the 2019 season. The Mets placed Vientos with Low-A Columbia, where he hasn't quite repeated his 2018 season thus far through 46 games. He has hit .256 with a .311 on-base percentage, nine doubles, four home runs and 18 RBI. However, he has turned it on during the month of May, hitting .281 with four home runs and 11 RBI. He made Baseball America's Prospect Hot Sheet on May 20, as he hit .357 with two home runs from May 13-19.
Repertoire and Future
Vientos's skill set is mainly based on his offensive potential. Coming out of high school, he was drafted as a shortstop but was permanently moved to third base in 2018, where he is average defensively. The belief is that as long as he doesn't fill out too much, he should be able to stick at third base long term. If he does outgrow the position, he has the offensive ceiling to handle first base as well.
His bat is highlighted by his above average power that could lead to 20-plus home runs annually if he reaches his potential. He possesses great bat speed and barrel control, consistently barreling up balls for hard contact. He is still very young at 19 years old and possesses the baseline skills to hit for average and power long term.
Vientos is a prospect that is already starting to get recognized by some publications as a top 100 prospect in all of baseball. If he continues this hot streak and continues to mature, there is a strong likelihood that no publication will be able to keep him outside of its top 100; he may even reach the top 50 for some. Vientos is one of the most exciting prospects in the Mets system who has the potential to be the long-term answer at third base, possibly as soon as sometime in 2021.