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Top Prospects Series


Bats/Throws: Right/Right

Height/Weight: 6?2?, 210 lbs

Acquired:?In trade with Blue Jays with Noah Syndergaard, Wuilmer Becerra and John Buck for R.A. Dickey, Mike Nickeas and Josh Thole

Tags: Top Prospects Series, Travis d'Arnaud, Toby Hyde
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I had Plawecki at #11 last year and he lands there again this year in a better system. This will be a revealing year for Plawecki as he will play against age-appropriate competition for the first time as a professional at age 23 in AA.

 

#11 ? C Kevin Plawecki?Bats/Throws:?Right/Right

Tags: Kevin Plawecki, Top Prospects Series, Toby Hyde
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This spot, #12, and shortstop Gavin Cecchini is the spot where my tiered ranking concept is no longer useful. Cecchini is different enough from the guys behind him on the list RHP Gabriel Ynoa and Michael Fulmer and the guy in front of him, that it just does not make sense to group them all together.

 

#12 ? SS Gavin Cecchini

Tags: Gavin Cecchini, Top Prospects Series, Toby Hyde
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These two right-handed starters each have mid-rotation potential and succeeded at A-ball in a season in which they were 20 years old on Opening Day.

Just to be clear, Fulmer's best fastball and best slider are better than Ynoa's. However, Ynoa slips in front of Fulmer because he locates much better. Add these two together - Fulmer's fastball and slide and Ynoa's control and feel for a changeup - and that's a guy who would ?be a top 5 prospect in the system.

#13 ? RHP Gabriel Ynoa

Tags: Gabriel Ynoa, Michael Fulmer, Top Prospects Series, Toby Hyde
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This post concludes our three-part series on potential middle reliever prospects that spanned the #15 through #21 spots in my Top 41 ranking of Mets prospects (Part one and two). Part three has a bunch of really good fastballs from a trio of pitchers listed at 6'4" and two of these three should be MLB contributors in 2014.

#15 ? Vic Black

Bats/Throws:? Right/Right

Tags: Domingo Tapia, Jacob deGrom, Top Prospects Series, Vic Black, Toby Hyde
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We're fully into the "middle relievers who could be up in 2014" section of this list. It's not sexy, but these guys are potentially useful big league pitchers as soon as a few months from now. That proximity to providing big league value puts them ahead of higher upside players who might never see a day in the big leagues.

18 ? RHP Jeff Walters

Bats/Throws:? Right/Right

Tags: Cory Mazzoni, Jeff Walters, Top Prospects Series, Toby Hyde
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This is a fun pair of toolsy outfielders from the 2013 draft. They?re both raw, athletic types. Either might never hit in advanced-A, or either could figure it out and become an above average MLB contributor. Combined with Brandon Nimmo, these three give the Mets the most upside in centerfield that I can recall in the last 10 years.

#22 CF Champ Stuart

Bats/Throws:?Right/Right

Tags: Champ Stuart, Ivan Wilson, Top Prospects Series, Toby Hyde
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Both of these pitchers have upsides as guys who can pitch at the back of a big league rotation and both showed me that they could get outs in a-ball. They are both above 6'3" and are solidly built (again, adding to the case that they can be rotation pieces down the road). On the other hand, they have incomplete arsenals at the moment, and their raw statistics could overstate their prospect profile.

 

#24 RHP Luis Cessa

Tags: Luis Cessa, Robert Gsellman, Top Prospects Series, Toby Hyde
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Lets look at a cohesive group of young arms in my Top 41, young pitchers with better than average fastballs who have not played full-season ball yet. I tend to be pretty conservative with young pitchers especially those below full-season ball since there are just so many misses.

This trio begins the fun part of the rankings.

 

Tags: Andrew Church, Casey Meisner, Chris Flexen, Top Prospects Series, Toby Hyde
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We ease into the top 30 of my Top 41 Mets prospects with a pair of skilled up the middle defenders who made their MLB debuts in 2013, but do not project to hit enough to be everyday guys. Still, there's big league value here.

 

#29 ? C Juan Centeno

Tags: Juan Centeno, Top Prospects Series, Wilfredo Tovar, Toby Hyde
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As a pair, Mazzillia and King make sense. They had nice debuts in Brooklyn and?will start 2014 in a-ball.?Their projections top them out as average big leaguers. They don't strike out too much and walk a bit.

 

#31 ? 2B LJ Mazzilli

Tags: Jared King, LJ Mazzilli, Top Prospects Series, Toby Hyde
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This year, I'm writing up most of my Top 41 Mets prospects in roughly similar groups. These three arms at the back of the list form a very cohesive trio of strong-armed relievers. There's plenty of fastball here, but control issues and size make these guys relievers.

#37 - RHP Akeel Morris

Bats/Throws:? Right/Right

Tags: Akeel Morris, Bret Mitchell, Ricardo Jacquez, Top Prospects Series, Toby Hyde
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It's time I started publishing my Mets Top 41 Prospects for 2014. For the guys outside the top 10, I'm going to publish them in groups of similar value, some of which will be bigger than others. I'll aim for two groups per week day.

I probably could have put any of the Mets' major international signings from last year in the last few spots. However, in general, I wait until after a guy has played his first year in a domestic rookie league to rank a player, or, in the case of Amed Rosario last year, it was clear he would play stateside in the following season. To justify the uncertainty of putting a 16-year-old who has yet to play his first professional game and might still be a year or two away from even playing on US soil, I want to see monster potential.

So our list this year starts with two 19-year-olds who are years away from the big leagues. Their group: Infielders who Can't Legally Drink.

Tags: Luis Guillorme, Pedro Perez, Top Prospects Series, Toby Hyde
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And we'll finish up our prospect rankings by position, appropriately enough, with the guys who are on the mound at the end of the game, relievers.

This is the diciest of my position lists. Many of these pitchers are still working as starters in the minor leagues. The idea is that they are more likely to be productive Major League relievers than starters.

We started the pitching look with left-handed starters?here?and relievers here. For the position players, we go:?center fielders,?corner outfielders,?third base,?shortstops,??catcher,?first base?and?second base.

Tags: Top Prospects Series, Toby Hyde
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Time to finally put a capper on my Mets prospects by position series with our second-to-last entry: the always in-demand, left-handed reliever group.

There just are not very many guys working out of the bullpens in the Mets system who throw from the left side.

LHP ? Relievers1. Jack Leathersich

Tags: Top Prospects Series, Toby Hyde
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Lets move closer to finishing up our Mets prospect ranking by position, by moving over to right-handed pitchers. We'll finish with the relievers tomorrow.

We started the pitching look with left-handed starters here. For the position players, we go:?center fielders,?corner outfielders,?third base,?shortstops,??catcher,?first base?and?second base.

This series does a few things: it organizes my thoughts before I publish my organizational rankings and lets you into my process. Remember, our key rule is that I'm only listing a player once - at his best position in the Majors.

Tags: Top Prospects Series, Toby Hyde
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With position players complete, it's time to turn our attention to pitchers. Again, we're ranking Mets prospects by position; this will be the backbone of my overall Mets Top 41 ranking.

For the position players, we go: center fielders,?corner outfielders,?third base,?shortstops,??catcher,?first base?and?second base.

We begin our pitcher look at one of the thinnest areas in terms of numbers in the Mets' system: left-handed starters. Six lefties made 13 or more starts for the Mets in 2013: Steven Matz (21), Mark Cohoon (21), Alex Panteliodis (19), Darin Gorski (16), Kevin Canelon (14) and Angel Cuan (13).

Tags: Top Prospects Series, Toby Hyde
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This morning we will finish up our look at the Mets' position player prospects with center field, that glamour position.

In 2013, by wRC+, a measure of offense only, the Mets' centerfield production was last in the Major League at 68. Juan Lagares played such superlative defense, that he moved the unit's total contribution up to 2.3 fWAR, 21st in baseball. Lagares after all, hit .242/.281/.352 but was worth a million runs (note: 28 by BIS defensive runs saved over average, 21.5 by UZR and 2 by Total Runs) in center field. Most remarkably, he did that in under a full season. Also, defensive numbers in under a full season should be treated with fairly major error bars.

In previous entries, I examined corner outfielders,?third base,?shortstops,??catcher,?first base?and?second base.

Tags: Brandon Nimmo, Top Prospects Series, Toby Hyde
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We'll do our second-to-last group of position players: corner outfielders. I divided the players in this group in tiers to make their rankings easier to follow. Basically, it's Cesar Puello, some lottery ticket youngsters and some organizational depth.

We covered the infield in five parts: third base,?shortstops,??catcher,?first base?and?second base.

Corner OFTier 1 - Everyday Players and Soon?

Tags: Cesar Puello, Top Prospects Series, Toby Hyde
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While catcher and first base were pretty simple, second base gets more complicated, primarily by eligibility issues.

First, I need to explain what I'm doing here. I'm listing prospects by one position only, and at that, the position where I think that the player fits best on a Major League roster.

Second, second is often a second-choice position. Most of the guys who play second were shortstops at some point in their lives. They move to second because, with a much shorter throw to first, it's an easier position. All the same, second is not ojectively "easy." A good second baseman has, at a minimum, almost as much range as a good shortstop, sure hands, and good footwork around the bag for doubleplays and stolen base attempts.

Tags: Top Prospects Series, Toby Hyde
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Let's wrap this year up with Mets prospect lists by position. Then, early in 2014, we'll synthesize the whole into a 2014 Mets Top 41 Prospect list.

As I wrote a few weeks ago, this year, to prepare my Mets Top 41, I first created lists by position.

I'll put up a list for each position, with a few light comments on the position or individual players. Each player who makes my Top 41 will get a longer profile as part of that process.

Tags: Analysis, Top Prospects Series, Toby Hyde
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So last night as I was flying home, I took my first hack at lining up my Top 41 Mets prospects. I'm not sure when I'll start them on this site. It'll either be later this month or the first week of January.

This year, I first lined up about 60-some odd players, grouped by position. Then I synthesized the various position lists into one giant list all together.

Other techniques I've applied:

Tags: Top Prospects Series, Toby Hyde
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Observant readers will notice that when I started posting this Top 41 Prospects series, I made it through Cory Mazzoni at #17 and Collin McHugh at #18 last night. Then, as I was tweaking my forthcoming writeups, I noticed something didn't look right about my ordinal ranking in the low teens. I consulted my Word file of record. Indeed, somehow, in messing with my formatting, Word's auto-formatting had restarted my list after the system's top two prospects (d'Arnaud and Wheeler), who are in their own category. It restarted at my #3 prospect at #1. So, yeah, whoops. Let this be a lesson, I thought I had learned before: proofread and then proofread again.

In terms of writeups and this list, no orders have changed, since I started writing these things in mid March. However, because I cannot count, I'm going to write 43 prospect capsules this year. So you, dear reader, win. I lose an hour or two of my life.

Also, since this list goes 43 deep this year, think of it as the R.A. Dickey Memorial. Back when I did my first Mets list, I decided I would go to 31 because 1. it was 1 player longer than Baseball America and 2. Mike Piazza's number. Piazza, as you know, is awesome. However, as I was putting it together, I found that I had things to say about more players, and expanded the list, setting on 41 players as a constant reminder of the Franchise - Tom Seaver. This year, we'll go to 43 and we'll use it to again appreciate R.A. Dickey.

Tags: Top Prospects Series, Toby Hyde

After the raw potential of Cesar Puello and Wuilmer Becerra, these ranking will take a hard turn for the next eight slots into the realm of "MLB Spare Parts and Bullpen Pieces." I view all of the next eight as very likely to play in the big leagues, or in Carson's case already have, but unlikely to be average regulars. The big league at bats and innings this group will provide will separate them from many other players on this prospect list.

#24 LHP Robert CarsonBats/Throws:? Left/Left

Height/Weight:? 6?4?, 240 lbs

Tags: Juan Lagares, Robert Carson, Top Prospects Series, Wilfredo Tovar, Toby Hyde
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This pairing of two tools outfielders makes good sense to me. Puello's advantage in playing at higher levels is mitigated by his regression in 2012.

#27 - Cesar Puello

Bats/Throws:?Right/Right

Tags: Cesar Puello, Top Prospects Series, Wuilmer Becerra, Toby Hyde
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I originally had Nido a little higher and Verrett a little lower, but I'm happy with where they ended up.

29 ? C Tomas NidoBats/Throws:?Right/Right

Height/Weight:?6?0?, 200lbs

Tags: Logan Verrett, Tomas Nido, Top Prospects Series, Toby Hyde
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On its face, this trio is a hodgepodge. It is. However, when read as part of a greater group that covers #26-33 it makes more sense as a range where the rankings mix unproven guys with upside like Chris Flexen and Corey Oswalt with more accomplished players like Jack Leathersich and Cam Maron with lower ceilings.

#31 - LHP Jack Leathersich

Born:?7/14/90 (Beverly, MA)

Tags: Cam Maron, Chris Flexen, Jack Leathersich, Top Prospects Series, Toby Hyde
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These two are years, and years away from the big leagues. They're both huge risks with some upside.

?#34 - RHP Corey Oswalt?

Bats/Throws: Right/Right

Tags: Corey Oswalt, Top Prospects Series, Vincente Lupo, Toby Hyde
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How does one end up in this basket? We're still dealing with players who are some years or more away from contributing. There is speed in this group, but each player has at least one serious red flag of the group of age, injury and inexperience.

 

36 - OF Alonzo HarrisBats/Throws:?Right/Right

Tags: Alonzo Harris, Brendan Kaupe, Darrell Ceciliani, Top Prospects Series, Toby Hyde
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Lets rank some prospects. I'm only a month or three late on this project.

Why do we rank? At its most basic level, it's a way to show you the reader which players I think are most valuable, and take stock of the system as a whole.

After procrastinating for January, and then running short of time in February, I rearranged my list after visiting Spring Training. I made almost all of the changes outside the top 12 or so.

Tags: Top Prospects Series, Toby Hyde
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Vacation's over.

My first post of 2013, will be basically my final look back at 2012. Yeah, I'll finally get around to finishing my review of my 2012 Top 41 prospects. This is 1 through 5 and names you know. ?Next steps? The 2013 list. Oh yeah. Time to get back to work.

Oh, man, the second to last entry in this series was back in October on guys I had ranked 6-10. Then, apparently I got distracted. As far as the Top Prospect review pieces, part six, on players #11-15 is?here, part five, on players 16-20 is?here, part four, on players 21-25 is?here, part three, on players 26-30 is?here, part two on players 31-35 is?here,?part one, on players #36-41 is?here.

Tags: Brandon Nimmo, Jeurys Familia, Kirk Nieuwenhuis, Matt Harvey, Top Prospects Series, Zack Wheeler, Toby Hyde
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