2-19-13 – Game Pitchers, Jordany Valdespin, Daniel Murphy, Rafael Montero, Noah Syndergaard


Mets pitching:

      2-23 vs. Washington - Marcum, Wheeler, Mazzoni, Gorski, Familia, Parnell

      2-24 vs. Univ. of Michigan - Niese, Gee, Lyon, Robles, Montero, Torres

      2-24 vs. Houston - Harvey, Hefner, Laffey, Feliciano, Atchison, Edgin

      2-25 vs. Washington - McHugh, Germen, Ramirez, Burke, Hawkins, Carson, Rice

          Well, we sure should have something to write about after these game.

          I am particularly interested in seeing every pitch that comes out of Familia’s hand. He needs a strong start this spring if he has any chance of making the parent squad come April 1.

Valdespin possesses one of the best overall combinations of power, speed, and athleticism in the entire organization and though he's still got plenty of questions left to answer, increased patience would go a long way toward making him a viable building block for this club. While I may be on an island with this one, I fully expect Valdespin to open a lot of eyes in 2013 by eventually forcing himself into the lineup on a nearly regular basis -- regardless of where he's playing defensively -- and perhaps even getting a shot at the currently vacant leadoff spot.

I’m not going to go into my anti-Spin rant anymore. We all know what kind of dude this guy is, but, at the same time, he possesses talent that is needed, particularly after you read the next entry on this post.

Some of you might remember me talking him up four years ago. The talent has always been there.

Sandy Alderson announced that Daniel Murphy is experiencing pain in his right intercostal muscle and will head back to NY for evaluation.

          This was a sliding injury. Murphy hasn’t had complete success sliding in the past.

          There’s a ton of speculation on Twitter who the backup is. On paper it’s Turner; however, this would be a perfect time to slot Valdespin back into his natural position and see if he holds his own.

Word from camp (and from Jon Heyman) that the big hit of the camp is fire-baller Rafael Montero. There’s even talk of him being moved to the pen and possibly be used as a closer in some of the ST games. I can’t speak for how Montero could handle such a bump up. We all remember the Eddie Kunz fiasco a few years ago. A language barrier prevented him and I developing any kind of relationship when he pitched in Savannah, but it was a delight to watch him on the mound. The real bonus was the fact that he actually pitched better at the A+ level after his promotion. His SO9 ratio went from a first half Savannah season of 6.81 to 9.95 in St. Lucie. BABIP was .273 and FIP came in at 2.46.

Every camp has a star and I think we’re looking at this one.

This also is one of those ‘wild open’ camps that anything can happen ad anyone can make. I’m sure Montero will report to Binghamton, but it’s the brass, not the fans, that are bragging on this kid right now.

Lastly on Montero… I went back to the notes from an interview I did with Frank Viola last season just before the all-star break. Here was his comments on a “word association” game we had (and I threw in what he said about all the pitchers):

Montero – “incredible fastball and command”

Vasquez – “typically lefty from Mexico – pitches backwards and gets away with it”

Fulmer – “impressive, asks questions, a quick learn”

Tapia – “incredible stuff – needs tuning – a 97 sinker (!)”

deGrom – “love him, sits at 94,, had TJS”

Verritt – “too early to tell, questionable overall stuff, slider is devastating”

Chism – “bulldog,crafty, smart”

Camarena – “crafty, three quality pitches”

Bradford – “tough SOB, heavy sinker”

Pants – “an enigma”

Both pitchers will be in the Florida State League (High-A) this season with an outside change at reaching the Eastern League (Double-A) before the season ends. A lot will happen in the two or three years before their debuts, but if each develops as I expect, Sanchez has a higher ceiling as an ace. Syndergaard, on the other hand, is realistically a second or a third starter. With that said, I am more confident that Syndergaard can complement his fastball and change up with a third offering than I am in Sanchez’s command profile. If I had to pick one of them to start a playoff game for me today, it would be Syndergaard. But talent like Sanchez’s is rare.

                   I don’t think there’s a second fiddle here. 


Rammy Yogendra said...

Montero is a stud after seeing him at PSL. He has the same build like Pedro and Lincecum but like them he has an electric arm and throws bullets. Don't jerk this guy like Meija- keep him as a starter and see how he fares in AA and AAA.

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