3/26/09

Mack's Prospect # 14 - P - Robert Carson

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Robert Carson P L L 6-3 220 Hattiesburg HS (Ms.)

Carson had a disappointing senior season at Hattiesburg, finishing 3-5 with only 36 Ks. The bright spot was his 2.65 ERA. As a junior, he went 5-2 with 2 saves and a 2.15 ERA with 60 Ks.

The Mets drafted Carson in the 14th round of the 2007 draft. He signed and was placed on The GCL Mets roster, where he went 1-0, 5.00 in 4 games, 1 start.

Scouts say he has a “big time arm” and throws a “heavy” fastball. Carson features 4 pitches, a fastball, changeup, cutter and curveball. His fastball sits 90-92, and has topped out at 94. His changeup sits around 75-80, while his curveball is low to mid 70s.

In 2008, Carson started out with the GCL Mets and pitched impressively: 1-0, 1.57, 0.74. He was promoted to Kingsport, where he went 2-3, 1.76 in 6 starts.

In September 2008, Toby Hyde wrote:

LHP Robert Carson – 1-0, 1.57 ERA, 5 GS, 23 IP, 11 H, 5 R, 4 ER, 6 BB, 25 K - A pair of dominant outing in July, 12 IP, 2 H, 0 R, 0 BB, 16 K, proved that big lefty was ready for challenges beyond the GCL and earned him a promotion to Kingsport. Carson missed much of 2007 after being struck on the head by a ball, but had a healthy and productive ’08. Carson is the only player in this GCL review who I didn’t see play live, since he threw the day before I arrived in Florida. His fastball sat was 90-93, and his secondary offerings were a slider and a changeup. He told me in July that he was very pleased with the development of the slider this year. As a lefty with good size and velocity, I really like Carson’s ceiling – which could be an MLB rotation sometime around 2012 or so. Projected 2009 Start: Savannah

February 2009:

Toby Hyde on his #18 – P Robert Carson (#7 on Mack’s Mets Prospect List):

Carson shares many of the attributes of pitchers ranked below him on this list: really good size and a good fastball with average or better MLB velocity, sitting in the low 90s, from the left side. Carson differentiates himself in part from those below him was the development of his slider, a pitch that became an effective weapon for him in 2008. The trouble that hitters had driving the ball against Carson is reflected in the fact that he allowed just one homer in over 50 innings of work in 2008. Moreover, he’s already filled out to some degree, and that’s not a bad thing. 2008: Carson missed almost all of 2007 after getting hit on the head by a baseball, but the high school draftee made up for lost time with a strong ’08. He announced that he was done with the GCL in early July when he allowed a combined, two hits, no walks, no runs and fanned 16 over back-to-back six inning performances. Promoted to the Appalachian League, Carson’s walk rate moved up, and his strikeout rate dropped, but he induced nearly three times as many ground balls as fly balls. Projected 2009 Start: Savannah if all goes well in spring training.

Mack: Tobi and I are on opposite poles on this kid, but that’s probably caused from the criteria used to rank these kids. I don’t care how many years they’ve been in the organization, or if their turn comes next. All my rankings are based on my opinions on who has the most tools, highest ceiling, and projects out (if they continue to produce as they have in the past) as a future major league star player. This is why kids like Bobby Parnell and Nick Evans are lower on my list that most bloggers that project prospects. Yes, Parnell and Evans will make it to the Bigs, but I don’t see their starting potential as high as some of the younger kids, like this one.

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