Wheeler tossed 102 pitches, hitting 99 mph with his fastball. However, he surrendered lead-off home runs in the fifth and sixth inning, as well as a bases-loaded RBI double.
In five starts for Vegas this season, Wheeler is 0-1 with a 5.79 ERA and 1.757 WHIP.
I talked to a talent evaluator who has watched Wheeler this season, and he says he's pitching well, and his advanced stats prove it, but he's clearly suffering from the hitter-friendly environment in Las Vegas. If this is true, I wonder if it will impact how soon he is promoted to Queens.
Why let him develop bad habits in a ballpark that is not indicative of the rest of reality? If he stays and struggles, will that mess him up physically and mentally? Would it be better to work it out at the big league level, where, despite facing better hitters, he'll no loner be in Vegas, while surrounded by veterans and big-league coaches?
Yes, I understand the arbitration and free agent, clock issues, etc., I get it, but I think this kid has to be promoted the minute the team feels it is viable. He's closing in on 200 upper-level innings. It's time. Let's go...
For more on Wheeler's start, head over to Mets Minor League Blog.
By the way, here is my Mets Minor League Report on Wheeler, featuring footage and comments of Wheeler and Wally Backman in Vegas: