Mets prospect Shervyen Newton is a raw but versatile infield prospect from the Netherlands who has recently started tearing the cover off the ball for Low-A Columbia...
Weight: 180 lbs
MLB Pipeline Mets Prospect Ranking: 5
2019 Statistics: .227 batting average, .290 on-base percentage with 12 doubles, six home runs and 22 rbi in 69 games.
Shervyen Newton was born in Tilburg, Netherlands. The Mets signed Newton out of Curacao in 2015 in the same international free agent class as Andres Gimenez and Gregory Guerrero. Despite being from the Netherlands, he trained at an academy in Curacao which was better for his growth as a player and got more eyes on him. MLB scouts don't frequent the Netherlands.
Despite being a switch hitter with a very projectable build at 6-foot-3 and 160 pounds at the time of being signed, there still was not enough attention given to Newton by scouts. Because of that, he was simply one of the international free agents who fell through the cracks. It happens every year for various reasons, but the Mets were able to sign him for $50,000. He is multilingual, which has benefited him in being able to build relationships with different players of different backgrounds.
With The Mets
As a 17-year-old, the Mets assigned Newton to the Dominican Summer League Mets team where he really struggled in the 35 games he played. He posted a .169 batting average with only six extra base hits, none of which were home runs. That showing resulted in a .575 OPS.
It is not often that players repeat the Dominican Summer League, but Newton's performance led to the Mets letting him repeat the level in 2017 as an 18-year-old. He broke out in a big way, hitting .311 with a .433 on-base percentage and upped his extra base hits from 6 in 2016 to 21 in 2017. He also stole 10 bases.
At that point he started getting the attention of Mets people and it led to a more aggressive assignment in 2018 where he skipped the Gulf Coast League level and went straight to the Appalachian League Kingsport Mets. Newton was up to the challenge and put up a .280 average, .408 on-base percentage and 23 extra base hits -- including a career high five homers in 56 games. At this point Newton skyrocketed up the Mets prospect rankings, where MLB.com ranked him No. 5 in the entire system coming in to the 2019 season.
In 2019 the Mets sent Newton, Ronny Mauricio and Mark Vientos -- all of whom are ranked inside of the Mets Top 5 prospects by MLB Pipeline to Low-A Columbia. A lot of people were very excited to see how this trio would perform given they all are below the average age for the level. Newton had a rough first three months for Columbia, posting OPS's of .390, .629 and .462. There was concern that maybe this level was a bit too much for him, but he kept working hard on shortening his swing and has really found his groove in the month of July --hitting .368 with five home runs and 11 RBI, leading to an OPS of 1.018.
Scouts have cited Newton's altered swing mechanics allowing him to more frequently spray hard line drives in the gaps. He is also starting to show a little more pop as he physically grows into his frame. The hope is that he continues this hot streak through August and his year in Columbia can be considered a growing experience.
Newton has a projectable build at 6-foot-4 and has gotten up to 180 pounds. He should easily be able to put on another 15 pounds, which will be advantageous for his power output as he continues his development. He possessed a long swing which led to a lot of issues making consistent contact, and even though it's a small sample size, he is making much better contact since his swing change.
Newton possesses above average raw power that should at least provide a lot of doubles, but could lead to some real home run power down the road. He has defensive versatility as he has played games at second base, third base and shortstop. He is not a really a fast player, but his infield actions are strong and the belief is that he should be able to play all three infield positions as long as he doesn't get too big. The worst case scenario would be a full time move to third base, where he has quick hands and a strong arm to handle the spot.
Overall, Newton is more of a raw player than some of his peers and he is still learning to play the game. That leads him to really be a boom or bust kind of prospect. The questions will be how much consistent contact he makes and what comes of his power.
Newton has at least average tools across the board except base running speed. He may drop in some prospect rankings due to his inconsistent season and the potential addition of 2019 draft picks like Brett Baty, Josh Wolf and Matthew Allan. However, I like Newton a lot and get excited by the flashes that he shows. I can see him potentially being a guy you can play across the infield while using his versatility to your advantage. A best-case projection would be for him to be an every-day third baseman with power.