Written by: Matt Pepin
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**Right below is the Mets Top 20 list simplified. Scroll further down for FULL Present/Future Grades, FV, ETA, and summaries on EACH PLAYER ranked in the system! Tons of Statistics on each player as well! Some player highlights, future outlooks and more enjoy!**
|1||Ronny Mauricio||SS||International FA Signing – 2017|
|2||Francisco Alvarez||C||International FA Signing – 2018|
|3||Brett Baty||3B||1st Round: 12th Overall – 2019 Draft|
|4||Matthew Allen||RHP||3rd Round – 2019 Draft|
|5||Pete Crow Armstrong||CF||1st Round: 19th Overall – 2020 Draft|
|6||Andres Gimenez||SS||International FA Signing – 2015|
|7||David Peterson||LHP||1st Round: 20th Overall – 2017 Draft|
|8||JT Ginn||RHP||2nd Round – 2020 Draft|
|9||Thomas Szapucki||LHP||5th Round – 2015 Draft|
|10||Endy Rodriguez||C/1B/OF||International FA Signing – 2018|
|11||Mark Vientos||3B||2nd Round – 2017 Draft|
|12||Isaiah Greene||OF||2nd Round CBB – 2020 Draft|
|13||Alexander Ramirez||OF||International FA Signing – 2019|
|14||Shervyen Newton||SS||International FA Signing – 2015|
|15||Josh Wolf||RHP||2nd Round – 2019 Draft|
|16||Kevin Smith||LHP||7th Round – 2018 Draft|
|17||Robert Dominguez||RHP||International FA Signing – 2019|
|18||Junior Santos||RHP||International FA Signing – 2018|
|19||Adrian Hernandez||OF||International FA Signing – 2017|
|20||Franklyn Kilome||RHP||International FA Signing – 2013|
1. Ronny Mauricio SS – Columbia Fireflies (A Full)
19 Years Old – Throw: R – Bat: S – 6’3” 166 lbs. – ETA: 2023
Mauricio is as intriguing a prospect as they come. He’s a tall lanky, very projectable SS with potential for 5 average or better tools, as he progress in his game and grows into his body. He made his full-season debut in 2019 where he hit just below average but flashed a lot of the potential we know he has.
From the left side of the plate, Mauricio uses his lower half very well, doing a great job driving his back hip and foot off the ground. His hands also work quickly, and while having movements, are controlled. He does an excellent power generating power, especially with such a lean frame. His vertical bat angles (VBA) are flatter than I’d like to see, meaning his bat has a fairly flat path through the zone. He’s even less advanced from the right side, struggling to repeat mechanics and having a less controlled leg kick.
From both sides of the plate, I anticipate a large variation of launch angles (sx of LA), meaning, a huge difference in his exit angles off the bat. This is mostly due to his current lack of strength. An indicator of this is his awful 50+ GB%. He’ll need to start driving the ball in the air as his power develops.
He does a good job using the whole field but has only shown hints of pull-side power so far. His pitch recognition is well below average. He’s an aggressive swinger but managed to strike out just 19% in his 2019 full-season debut. A natural increase in walks is inevitable with experience but he’ll need to improve his eye to produce at the upper levels.
Defensively, Mauricio has an average glove with a good arm. He’s not fast but he has a good range with his long strides and natural feel for the position. I expect him to be worth between -2 and -5 runs at SS at the moment. A move to 3B seems likely with the crowded Mets SS situation.
On the base paths, Mauricio does not provide much value. He’s currently a below-average runner but could improve slightly as he gets stronger and a better feel for his lanky body. He’s a terrible base stealer, constantly getting thrown out more than he successfully steals.
When Mauricio fills out his frame, he should jump up prospect boards and begin to translate all his raw tools into in-game success, especially with power numbers.
2. Francisco Alvarez C – Kingsport Mets (RK)
18 Years Old – Throw: R – Bat: R – 5’11” 220 lbs. – ETA: 2023
It’s easy to get overly excited with Alvarez after his ridiculous 2019 season across 2 levels of rookie ball. The catcher is listed at 5’11, but looks shorter and has a fairly stocky build that he’s slimmed down and built muscle in the last few years.
Alvarez hits from the right side and has a swing geared more towards contact which should eventually change as he tries to hit for more power. His load immediately sits him into his back hip with a toe tap. His hands have a very slight hitch before attacking straight at the ball. He appears to create very good vertical bat angles (VBA) which could begin to explain his very high BABIP numbers.
The thing that’s potentially most appealing about Alvarez’s bat is his approach and ability to make contact. He has a knack for pitch recognition with an above-average ability to draw walks while making a lot of contact. I believe his walk and strikeout rate will rise as power becomes a part of his game.
Defensively, he’s very raw but shows some great signs. His arm is well above average and he has a good feel for blocking balls, his receiving and game calling is most raw with room to grow. The automatic strike zone would help Alvarez a ton and seems most likely at this point. Regardless, he should be a serviceable defender behind the dish.
Alvarez will benefit a ton by growing into his power and beginning to have a more power first approach while maximizing his discipline. He could be a huge part of the MLB’s offense-first catchers with the implementation of the automatic strike-zone.
3. Brett Baty 3B – Brooklyn Cyclones (A Short)
20 Years Old – Throw: R – Bat: L – 6’3” 210 lbs. – ETA: 2022
Baty has tons of natural strength, allowing him to simplify his mechanics to maximize contact. He has little to no movement in his hands, allowing him to purely focus on contact. His lower half works well with a moderately big leg kick and sitting back on his back hip.
His average exit velocity was 91 MPH in 2019, in the top decile of MiLB players. However, he struggled to get the ball in the air in 2019, posting ground-ball rates above 40%. His swing promotes line drives and fly-balls but the results said otherwise in 2019 likely due to poor timing, as he seemed late on most fastballs. More experience would surely fix this problem.
Even with the poor timing, he struck out just below average, which is impressive for such a young power hitter. If he can get his timing under control and begin to drive the ball in the air to the pull side, he’ll be a lock to hit above average at the Major League level.
Defensively, Baty is nothing special at all. He has poor footwork and hands and looks like more of a 1B. His arm is strong but very inaccurate, he rushes throws and has a weak glove side in his throwing mechanics. I think with experience and tweaking, he can be a below-average third baseman at the MLB level. He could also benefit from reps at 1B and LF now to make it a more smooth transition if necessary at the big league level.
4. Matthew Allan RHP – Brooklyn Cyclones (A Short)
19 Years Old – Throw: R – Bat: R – 6’3” 225 lbs. – ETA: 2023
Allan is looking like the steal of the 2018 draft so far. Ranked as a top arm and early 1st rounder, he ended up going in the 3rd round with the 89th pick because of sign-ability issues. He ended up signing for a whopping $2.5 million, four times greater than slot value.
He was sent to the GCL (R), where he pitched 8.1 innings. He was then called up to the Brooklyn Cyclones (A-), en route to a NY Penn League championship where he pitched 2 innings. In his 10.1 innings of work, he was solid, showing a real ability to miss bats against good talent but had below-average control.
Allan has a lot going for him on the mound. He truly has an elite 2-pitch mix with a very large and strong frame. He has a near-identical body to Gerrit Cole along with a very strong lower half. He has clean mechanics with an ability to repeat his arm slot with ease. He has a fairly effortless velocity and sits between 93-96 MPH while topping out at 97.
The fastball has more than just good velocity, it has good metrics including vertical movement and a spin rate of 2450, a decent bit above the major league average. But it’s not even his best pitch, he throws a lights out curveball with lots of tight spin and break. His 3rd and final pitch is a below-average changeup, nothing special and likely won’t be used very often moving forward. He’ll likely up his curveball usage and throw almost entirely fastballs and curveballs.
He has a good ability to locate his pitches especially for a 19 year-old with such good strikeout stuff, he should walk between 3 and 4 batters per 9 innings while striking out 10.5+.
5. Pete Crow-Armstrong CF
18 Years Old – Throw: L – Bat: L – 6’1” 180 lbs. – ETA: 2023
NO PROFESSIONAL STATS
The Mets finally got their ‘true’ CF that they’ve been searching for, ever since the departure of Jarred Kelenic. He struggled on the showcase circuit last summer but showed up this spring better than ever, he forgoes his Vanderbilt commitment to join the Mets.
PCA swings from the left side where he had loose hands and an overall nonchalant swing, his swing is raw and could use tweaking but he posses unteachable skills making him a potential offensive threat. He’s known for using the whole field and hitting for contact but has intriguing power potential. He has an incredibly efficient swing path creating the ability to hit low spin balls that carry well. His hand and bat speed is elite and paired with his ability to barrel up balls and use the whole field is deadly. I think it’s more likely than not that his power numbers are above average due to such good metrics for a contact-oriented hitter.
Perhaps even more impressive is his defense. PCA patrols CF with ease, he has great instincts and athleticism along with an above-average arm. If nothing else he’s a defender of at least +5 runs in CF.
6. Andres Gimenez SS – Binghamton Rumble Ponies (AA)
21 Years Old – Throw: R – Bat: L – 5’11” 161 lbs. – ETA: 2020
Gimenez has always been known as a glove/speed first infielder with an average offensive output. But after an incredibly strong 2nd half in AA, Arizona Fall League and Spring Training, many are wondering if he may be able to be something more at the plate. He was probably the best player in the AFL slashing .371/.413/.586 through 18 games. It’s also worth noting Gimenez has reverse splits, fairing a bit better vs LHP than RHP.
At the plate, he has a clean swing from the left side with quick hands. He has a toe tap and has a good rhythm with his lower half doing a good job creating power for such a small frame. His hands are busy yet controlled. He does a great job using the entire field but hits way too many groundballs (over 60% in AA). His timing is very good and even against top flame throwing arms such as Nate Pearson he’s managed to square balls up and send them to all fields.
He also has a very aggressive approach leading to very few walks, which is typical for a contact-oriented hitter, but he’ll need to rely on batting average as a lot of his offensive output. He also needs to continue driving the ball in the air, specifically line drives to have above-average success in the big leagues.
Defensively, Gimenez shines. He has excellent instincts, hands, and feet allowing him to range all over and make plays most minor leaguers can’t make. His arm is very strong especially for his size, he’s able to play 3B with ease as well as 2B. He’s also great at making plays on the move and throwing from different arm slots.
On the base paths, Gimenez is a very good runner with the ability to steal bases, (66 in 2018-19). His excellent agility makes his speed very useful defensively.
Gimenez is a lock to provide defensive and base running value at the next level but there are questions at the plate. If he can continue to hit at the same level as he has in the second half of 2019 and AZL, he should make for a slightly above-average hitter and a valuable player overall.
7. David Peterson LHP – Binghamton Rumble Ponies (AA)
24 Years Old – Throw: L – Bat: L – 6’6” 240 lbs. – ETA: 2020
The lefty is one of the bigger pitchers in the minors, standing at 6’6″, 240 lbs. He doesn’t offer a plus pitch but he has the necessary tools to be a successful number 4 or 5 starter. He has a high floor and fairly low ceiling, definitely someone who will stick around in the Majors for a while after his call-up.
For a big guy, Peterson has had a healthy career managing to stay on the mound for the majority of his professional career. He works very quickly on the mound and has outstanding extension. He’s also very athletic on the mound finishing in an ideal position.
He offers a sinker sitting 89-91, topping out at 93 MPH, and generating excellent ground ball rates. Sinkers are typically very poor in the big leagues today as they have a tendency to ‘run into bats’. However, Peterson’s excellent control of the pitch allow him to produce consistent ground-balls while suppressing home runs. He’s regularly produced greater than 60% ground ball rates.
He features 2 breaking balls, being a slider and curveball. Both are on the same page with very low spin for breaking balls. Both pitches are about average but play well off in his advanced repertoire especially with his plus control. He also features a slightly above average changeup, it has good cut and he controls it well.
Peterson should debut in 2020 for the Mets and will likely earn a rotation spot for the 2021 season. His plus control along with advanced repertoire and ability to produce ground-balls give him a high floor.
8. JT Ginn RHP
21 Years Old – Throw: R – Bat: R – 6’2” 200 lbs. – ETA 2023
NO PROFESSIONAL STATS
Ginn was drafted in the 1st round in 2018 by the Dodgers but choose to honor his commitment to Mississippi State where he had a very good season. In 2020, he pitched just 3 innings before undergoing Tommy John surgery. That didn’t stop the Mets from taking him in the 2nd round. He’s an extremely athletic pitcher with one of the best sliders in the class.
He throws multiple fastballs sitting 91-95 topping out at 96. He mainly throws a sinker, which is good for a sinker but likely to run into bats especially in this age. Overall, his fastball metrics are very underwhelming due to the lack of vertical movement and spin stemming from him primarily throwing sinkers.
His secondary pitch is a slider which is phenomenal, it has a lot of depth and break. He’ll likely raise his slider usage and will need to continue developing it to be a front-line starter. Luckily not many teams develop sliders better than the Mets. He also throws a changeup which was well-below average in high school but he’s turned it into a solid 3rd pitch with a chance for it to make an impact.
Ginn’s slider and athleticism carry his profile. He currently looks like a solid 3 or 4 pitcher but with work adding/reinforcing a 4-seam fastball, he could be a solid 2 starter.
9. Thomas Szapucki LHP – Binghampton Rumble Ponies (AA)
24 Years Old – Throw: L – Bat: R – 6’2” 181 lbs. – ETA: 2020
Szapucki has been a slow riser through the Mets system mainly due to injuries, most notably Tommy John Surgery in 2017. In 2019, he reached just AA at 24 years old and pitched just 4 innings, spending the majority of the season in the Florida State League (A+). He’s known for his lights out a curveball as a part of a very solid 3 pitch mix. He’s had success every step of the way thus far most recently posting a 2.92 FIP at A+.
Szapucki has a clean windup with a less than 3/4 arm slot making it difficult for left-handed batters to see. His fastball sits 91-94 and tops out at 95, it has good vertical movement ad he knows how to use it in the top of the zone, this pairs very well with his excellent curveball. It has relatively low spin but sits in the low 80s and has great depth. He caps off his 3 pitch mix with an average changeup that has improved in recent years. He has roughly average control of all 3 pitches, he’ll likely walk 3.25-3.75 batters per 9 innings.
Szapucki’s very solid 3 pitch mix along with his deceptive delivery and average control make him a lock to be an at least average bullpen arm in the future with the potential to be a very effective middle to backend starter. If he can continue to throw a fastball up in the zone with frequent curveballs and the occasional changeup, he’ll have no problem adjusting to the talent of the upper minors and eventually MLB.
10. Endy Rodriguez C/OF/1B – GCL Mets (RK)
20 Years Old – Throw: R – Bat: S – 6’0” 170 lbs. – ETA: 2023
Earlier this week, I wrote a Prospect Profile on Endy. Read it here at Endy Rodriguez: Prospect Profile!
Rodriguez is a very interesting player, a switch-hitting catcher who can also play OF and 1B. He’s very athletic and has a projectable frame with muscle to add. He debuted in 2018 and has been a monster at the plate ever since, posting borderline elite numbers relative to the rookie ball league average while displaying a phenomenal hit tool and approach.
He’s better from the left side of the plate where he has a great swing, he produces hard contact with good loft. He’s mainly pulled the ball thus far but has the ability to drive the ball to all fields. His average exit velocity is 90, an incredible mark for such a young player. He also does a good job hitting line drives and flyballs, he finished 2019 with a 54% FB rate, 32% LD rate, and 13% GB rate which are all ideal numbers.
Perhaps best of all is his hit tool. Endy has plus pitch selection while also making lots of contact. He finished 2019 with a 14.3% BB rate and 14.3% K rate, both excellent marks. His great approach along with sustained success in rookie ball nearly guarantees positive outcomes throughout A ball.
Defensively he mainly develops behind the plate but takes reps in the OF as well and has played some 1B scattered throughout his young career. Behind the plate, he doesn’t have the traditional catcher body type but does just fine. He moves very well behind the plate but while his receiving is fine, his catch and throw is above average. Endy could benefit from the eventual automatic strike zone but right now there is no worry that his receiving won’t be serviceable in the big leagues. In the outfield, he has plus range for a corner OF and makes good reads along with his above average arm.
Rodriguez is looking like one of the more undervalued players in the Mets farm but should break out when he’s showcased on a more accessible scale in full-season ball, hopefully in 2021. His good defense and excellent versatility make him a valuable player to have on a roster while his very good approach/hit tool and power potential should eventually give him an everyday spot in the lineup.
11. Mark Vientos 3B – Columbia Fireflies (A)
20 Years Old – Throw: R – Bat: R – 6’4” 185 lbs. – ETA: 2023
Vientos was oddly named the Mets organizational offensive player of the year after slashing .255/.300/.411 (105 wRC+) in his first taste of full-season ball with the Columbia Fireflies (A). Vientos has a projectable frame with terrific power potential that’s held down by an awful approach.
Vientos swings from the right side, his lower half works well with a very small leg kick and he creates very good torque and rotational acceleration that’s ideal for a power prospect. Some problems lie in his hands and upper body, his swing is long and therefore somewhat inconsistent with attack angles. However, he did a very good job in 2019 pulling the ball (46%) and hit the ball in the air more than most power prospects his age (38%). His exit velocity averaged 91 MPH and he maxed out at 106, both very good metrics, especially considering he’s just 20 years old and debuting in full-season ball.
The problem with Vientos is his pitch selection and bat control. In 2019 he had a 24% K rate, 4.8% BB rate, and a 16% SwStr rate, all poor rates. He also has long and awful slumps throughout his seasons so far, a very inconsistent hitter. Obviously, the ability to take walks and see pitches is a very important skill especially for a hitter who won’t be reaching base via batting average. If he can revamp his approach, he’ll be an offensive force.
Defensively, Vientos has a very good arm and good enough hands to get the job done at 3B. However, his range is non-existent, a combination of his very slow foot speed and poor agility make him more of a defensive liability than average defender. The Mets have expressed their concern and have helped him train his lateral quickness to minimize these issues.
Vientos is the type of player you watch in batting practice and think you’ve found yourself a superstar, only to watch the game and realize there’s gaping holes that you wouldn’t see in BP or a showcase. Vientos’ raw power is as good as any and at just 20 years old he’s a very valuable farm piece, but if he can’t figure out his approach or ability to make contact than he won’t have much of a future past AA.
12. Isaiah Greene OF
18 Years Old – Throw: L – Bat: L – 6’1” 180 lbs. – ETA: 2024
|20 / 50||40/50||25/45||60/55||50/55||45/55||40+|
NO PROFESSIONAL STATS
Greene was the Mets 3rd rounder in 2020. He was someone the Mets viewed as a potential 1st round talent before the draft and were ecstatic to take him in the 3rd. He has excellent tools but is as raw as anyone, especially at the plate. He lacks a track record and prominently struggled in 2019 during his junior season of HS.
At the plate there a swing and miss concerns bringing down his hit tool. Mechanically, he’s raw but shows good traits. He has very little torque, his hips and shoulders move at the same time killing his power output. Most intriguing is his great vertical bat angle, he has a real skill for having high VBA’s especially for prep bat, bringing a very good chance for future power potential. He also trains at an advanced hitting facility that trains advanced skills such as VBA’s, a player welcoming analytics is a big positive in my book.
Defensively, Greene has plus speed and should have an above average glove, he also has a strong arm. There’s no question whether or not he has the ability to play CF in the future.
I expect Greene to struggle to an extent at the plate when he debuts in the minors and last for a few seasons. But as he fills out his body and makes adjustments, he’ll begin to show his potential on the stat sheet.
13. Alexander Ramirez OF – DSL Mets 2 (RK)
17 Years Old – Throw: R – Bat: R – 6’3” 170 lbs – ETA: 2024
NO PROFESSIONAL STATS
Ramirez has a chance to be a stud, very projectable lean frame with potential for 5 tools, the 17 year old will likely stick in CF long term.
At the plate, Ramirez has what looks to be an advanced knowledge of the strike zone with a knack for barreling up baseballs. His swing is long with a lot of movement but his talent hasn’t made it a problem so far. He moves his hand multiple times before launch generating power but may need to be toned down as the pitchers get better. The power potential is real, already showing an ability to put balls over the left field wall as well as spraying doubles deep into the gaps.
Defensively, he clearly has the tools to remain in CF but could eventually move to the corner due to his size. His long legs and very good athleticism give him great range in CF along with a good glove and a very good arm, fit for any outfield position.
Ramirez is a very interesting player who projects to be a 5 tool player with advanced traits at the plate. His rawness and lack of track record are the only thing between him and being one of the Mets top prospects.
14. Shervyen Newton SS – Columbia Fireflies (A)
21 Years Old – Throw: R – Bat: S – 6’4” 180 lbs. – ETA: 2023
Newton was one of the handful of Mets infield prospects to debut in full season ball in 2019. He had his 2nd straight season with a roughly 32% K rate while posting an 81 wRC+. The switch hitting SS has an incredibly projectable frame with lots of muscle and athleticism. The only thing standing between Newton and big time success is his hit tool, more importantly contact rate.
From the right side of the plate Newton has a fairly short swing with good separation between his hips and shoulders leading to good torque. The mechanical concerns lie with his left handed swing, while it’s smooth and natural it has a lot of hand movement leading to whiffs and very inconsistent results. Unfortunately there are for more right handed pitchers in the league forcing him to hit from the left side more often than not.
There’s power potential especially with Newton’s frame and sheer raw power. However it’s not reflected in his exit velocities, averaging 87 MPH and maxing out at 103. He also hits far too many ground balls for his power to be reflected on the stat sheet. This is likely due to the extreme swing and miss problem Newton possesses. Up until 2019, he put up elite walk numbers at every level, probably a mixture of solid discipline and complacency. He’ll need to shorten up his swing and begin making contact for his power to show in game.
Defensively, he has the hands and footwork to stick at SS but isn’t a special defender, with the Mets packed SS position he’ll likely end up moving to 3B or 2B (where he played nearly all of 2019). He has some serious arm strength that is much needed for the left side of the infield.
15. Josh Wolf RHP – GCL Mets (RK)
19 Years Old – Throw: R – Bat: R – 6’3” 170 lbs. – ETA: 2023
Wolf was the Mets 2nd rounder in 2019, the 19-year-old is tall and thin with a lot of room to add muscle. His stuff is live but mechanics aren’t quite ideal. He debuted in the GCL after being drafted in 2019 and in 8 innings he pitched terrifically, posting a 13.50 K/9 and 1.13 BB/9.
He fixed some mechanical concerns by lowering his arm slot to more of a 3/4 from the over the top he originally featured. His windup is fast and rather unrepeatable, making his mechanics vary from pitch to pitch on occasion. As a slim 19 year old with a projectable frame and no injury history, there is nothing to worry about in the mechanical department.
His fastball has a lot of life at 92-95 MPH, topping out at 97, despite good extension he throws downhill with what seems to be minimal vertical movement. The spin rate is just below average on the fastball. He also features a plus curveball with a lot of depth, it also features below-average spin but still performs very well. His final pitch is a potentially average changeup.
Parts of Wolf’s game is raw but the potential is there to be a top of the line starter. I’d like to see him clean fill into his body and trying to lower his release point while creating vertical movement in the top of the zone for his fastball. Adding a slider could also be very effective for his repertoire considering he already throws a plus curveball.
16. Kevin Smith LHP – Binghamton Rumble Ponies (AA)
23 Years Old – Throw: L – Bat: R – 6’3” 200 lbs. – ETA: 2020
Smith doesn’t feature a plus pitch, and while is ‘stuff’ isn’t great, he does a lot of other things very well to get hitters out. He’s spent his pro career facing talent younger than him, reaching AA in 2019 where he pitched a 3.23 FIP.
His delivery is very deceptive to left handed batters. He hides the ball for a long time before throwing from a 3/4 arm slot. He also features great extension and therefore has a low release point for a pitcher so tall. Helping him further is his fairly high spin fastball (2450 rpm) allowing him to get vertical movement creating a fastball that plays very well in the top of the zone especially paired with his slider. His fastball is 87-90, topping out at 92 MPH. His slider may be his best pitch moving forward, as it has good break and features great deception. He’ll need to work at developing his changeup to be an effective starter at the big league level. His control is roughly average.
If Smith can develop his changeup, he could make for a solid 4 or 5 starter in the rotation but seems most likely fit as a long reliever/spot starter type. He also could make for a good middle/back end reliever primarily utilizing his fastball-slider combo.
17. Robert Dominguez RHP –
18 Years Old – Throw: R – Bat: R – 6’5” 195 lbs. – ETA: 2024
NO PROFESSIONAL STATS
Dominguez was a huge under the radar signing for the Mets late last year. He has a very projectable frame and consistently hit 99 MPH in game, sitting around 95. His mechanics will need some tweaking but could be fixed naturally as he grows into his body. He’s shown flashes of a plus curveball and potential for a solid changeup.
While we don’t have very much information of Dominguez, his frame and velocity alone at such a young age brings great potential and will open many eyes in the next few years.
18. Junior Santos RHP – Kingsport Mets (RK)
18 Years Old – Throw: R – Bat: R – 6’8” 218 lbs. – ETA 2023
Santos has very high upside at 18 years old and standing at 6’8. He pitched in rookie ball in 2019 for the Kingsport Mets where he struggled mightily, especially with his control. He had a 5.57 FIP and 5.09 ERA with a 5.53 BB/9.
Santos is very raw mechanically, featuring very awkward arm action with varying mechanics from pitch to pitch. It’s likely due to him not having full control of his huge body yet, one thing he does particularly well is getting extension.
He features a strong fastball with a lot of life topping out at 95 MPH with above average spin. His secondary pitch in 2019 was a slider which was very inconsistent and awkward yet had good spin. It’s likely he plays around with a curveball in the coming seasons to boost his repertoire, however the Mets develop sliders well.His final pitch is a very raw changeup which isn’t very developed at all.
Santos main concern thus far is his poor control, stemming from his poor and inconsistent mechanics. It’s expected that he’ll naturally improve control as he becomes more comfortable in his huge frame and tweaks his mechanics, especially his arm action.
Santos’ young age, frame and traits make him a very interesting prospect. However, he’ll need a lot of grooming and developing to be a major league impact arm.
19. Adrian Hernandez OF – GCL Mets (Rk)
19 Years Old – Throw: R – Bat: R – 5’9” 180 lbs. – ETA: 2023
Hernandez is one of many Mets teenage OF’s with potential for 5 tools. At the moment, he’s very raw but possesses a lot of good traits suggesting future success. He missed nearly all of 2019 with a calf injury. In 2018, he debuted in the DSL where he was solid at the plate posting a 116 wRC+, his 6% BB rate and 18% K rate was below average.
At the plate he has a high leg kick and brings his hands far back with his bat tilted towards the pitcher. It appears that he almost has a negative attack angle, essentially meaning he swings down at the ball. However, he still managed to hit a decent amount of fly balls. Most impressively with Hernandez is is exit velocities having an average of 90 with a max of 104 in 2018 as a 17 year old against his first taste of professional pitching. Absolutely insane numbers, especially considering he has the ability to put bat to all and he’s just 5’9.
Defensively Hernandez has the tools to remain in CF but could definitely move to the corner. He has an above average arm with good speed and range to go with it.
20. Franklyn Kilome RHP – Binghampton Rumble Ponies (AA)
25 Years Old – Throw: R – Bat: R – 6’6” 175 lbs. – ETA: 2020
DID NOT PITCH IN 2019 SEASON
Kilome was acquired for Asdrubal Cabrera during the 2018 season. He got Tommy John surgery in the fall of 2018 and missed the entire 2019 season as a result. The 25 year old is on the Mets 40-man roster and will likely get a shot out of the Mets bullpen at some point of the 2020 season.
His 38 innings in the Mets organization (AA), Kilome was good posting a 3.17 FIP, 9.95 K/9, and 2.37 BB/9, all of these numbers being at least near career best. He’s shown below average control and strikeouts while not producing particularly weak contact or ground balls. He’s also never pitched a game out of the bullpen outside of rookie ball which is worth noting.
Mechanically, Kilome is rather choppy, with an inconsistent windup. He doesn’t get very good extension for such a tall pitcher, giving me concerns that his fastball won’t play as well as it should considering it’s above average spin. His fastball is still his best offering at 92-94 topping at 96 MPH, he also has a good curveball with 12-6 movement with average spin. His fastball-curveball combo has serious potential especially out of the bullpen, his final pitch is a work in progress changeup.
Kilome reminds me of Junior Santos with the huge body and inconsistent mechanics, as Kilome grows into his huge frame he should gain more control and stuff with smoother arm action. Down the line I see Kilome primarily as a bullpen arm.
Links to all other Team Top 20 Rankings: CLICK HERE!
Credits to FanGraphs for all the data