Mack Ade – Morning Report – 4-25-13


BA – link - The Royals lured third baseman Jake Kuebler away from a Nebraska commitment (where he would have followed cousin Alex Gordon) with a $150,000 bonus out of the 17th round of the 2008 draft. He failed to advance past high Class A in five years in the Kansas City system, which earned him his release last June and a new lease on life as a righthanded reliever after the Mets signed him in July.

Buster Olney‏  @Buster_ESPN

Zack Wheeler
will make another start for the Mets, but I think we've reached stage where each start potentially his last in the minors.

I’m surprised that Olney is reaching this far this early. It seems obvious that Wheeler could use some more AAA time to work his zone out.

Juan Lagares isn’t going to solve the Mets outfield long range problems, but he may offer a better utility alternative to Kirk Nieuwenhuis. I just don’t know how all of us missed on the Captain. Did we get caught up in his good looks and just forgot to figure out that he was marginal at best? TC had some nice things to say about him, but, frankly, he turns 26 in August and it just may be time to move aside and become a good AAAA player in Las Vegas. We are talking 106-K in 298-ML at bats.

Las Vegas is now operating with 3 ½ outfielders. Nieuwenhius joins AAAA players Jamie Hoffman and Aaron Brown and Eric Campbell, who also plays 3B, 1B and pitches the 9th inning when the team is behind by 10 or more runs. Binghamton’s Cory Vaughn should be knocking on the door around the all-star break and there is a possibility that both Cesar Puello and Alonzo Harris could also be elevated before the season is over.

The 50-game suspension for prospect pitcher Christian Montgomery is just, well, stupid by the player. Complete careers can be thrown away for one asinine act like this. Montgomery is a 6-1 RHP out of Lawrence Central HS (IN) who shot up the mock drafts right after the 2010 draft. I had him as one of the top 15 picks until his arm went south and was shut down for most of his senior year. Before that, his fastball would hit 97. Montgomery has never come out of Extended Camp and frankly, you just have too muc time on your hands down in Port St. Lucie. You also have too much beach and bar time and no one smokes alone. Look for the entire extended camp to get tested this week.

Gary Seagren and I talked about this earlier this week and I thought this would be a good time to remind us all of something. You simply can’t judge what a minor league pitcher is doing, in the A+ level or below, one game at a time. This is a critical stage in their career where they are being asked to throw more of certain pitchers that they need work on, or to try new mechanics recently taught. There’s not another game going on later that day around the block, so the only place they have to broaden their game is during the game.

I remember hanging out in the Sand Gnats dugout a few years ago a couple of hours before game time and the current night’s pitcher sat next to me. You usually do everything you can to stay away from who’s starting that night so I found this strange when he asked me if he could ask me a question. He said that he was being told to throw 20% of his pitchers that night as curveballs. I said fine, what’s the problem and he answered with ‘I don’t throw a curveball’.

We as observers, whether we are fans sitting in our house or beat writers hanging out in the clubhouse, have no idea regarding the parameters of each outing. It changes once they reach AA, but before that, get ready for a roller coaster of ERAs and WHIPs.

Chris ‏@tpgMets

Matt Harvey has been worth 1.0 fWAR in 2013. The rest of the Mets pitching staff combined has been worth -0.2 fWAR.

I’m spending the day in Savannah again. I always start off with the Chef’s choice sashimi plus two orders of ikura at Sakura on Broughten Street, near the campus of SCAD (Savannah College of Arts and Design). The best bait in town.

I will find out later who I’m interviewing today. I asked for either/or Kevin Plawecki and Steven Matz. Last home stand, I asked for ‘either/or’ Brandon Nimmo and Jayce Boyd and they sent out both of them together for a great interview. I have prepared questions for both. We’ll see.

As usual, I don’t stay for the game (can’t drive at night). I’m the only reporter in baseball that goes to the game but doesn’t stay for the game. And who says I take a normal approach to this industry?

12:30pm – I picked up my ‘2013 Mets Media Guide’, a collector’s item for all Mets fans. As usual, no mention of any Mets bloggers. Also, as usual, Adam Rubin was listed last in the beat reporter list J. Also, I never understood why guys like Matt Cerrone and Michael G. Baron weren’t listed in this guide. They are Mets insiders and worthy of at least a mention, no less a picture and paragraph.

12:46pm – This could all go to hell today. I just got a call that my wife’s Uncle Octave passed away around an hour ago. I may have to leave early.

1:30pm – Was informed that there will be a 5pm meeting for all players in the clubhouse that will either hold up or cancel all interviews today. We’ll have to wait and see.

2:00pm – A roving coach worked in the batting cage with the Hispanic bats (Zapata, Pina, De La Cruz) with the assistance of Coach Joel Fuentes. Emphasis was placed on the downward plane of swinging and winding up with the bat just toughing your top shoulder.

2:05pm – Saw P Logan Taylor (big guy) walking the halls with his stomach wrapped up in a full body bandage. Ugh. Looks a long way from returning to the mound.


Eudy Pina – opposite singe – single – deep center – GO 1st – GO SS – single center – single right – single center

Nelfi Zapata – flyout center – single middle – flyout right – instructions on weight on right thigh on follow-thru – gap left – ground out SS – single center – foul – single middle – gap left – single let – GO – GO – single right – GO – FLO-8 – single center – single center – gap right – gap right – FLO-9 – GO – gap left – pop – single center – single left – pop – FLO-8 – FLO-8 – FLO-7

Jeff Glenn – single center - FLO-9 = single left = single center – GO – GO –gap left –FLO-8 – GO – single – LO – FLO-8 – Pop – Pop – Gap left – gap right – FLO-9 – pop – single left – FLO-8 – FLO-8 –FLO-9

Jayce Boyd – gap left – GO – FLO-8 – FLO-9 – PO – GO – FLO-8 – GO- Pop – GO – single center – FLO-8 – single center – FLO-8 – single right – pop – FLO-9 – FLO-8 – FLO-7 – FLO-9 – single center – single center – deep left – foul left – single left – FLO-9 – FLO-7

Kevin Plawecki – GO – GO – single center – FLO-8 – single center – single center – GO – single right – LO – GO – HR – GO – FLO-9 – gap let – GO – gap right – gap right – GO – gap right – single center – GO – FLO-8 – FLO-8 – HR – single center - HR

2:30pm – I’m starting to figure out that the meeting will be a big time minor league pow wow. Roving Pitching Coach Jonathan Hurst, Pitching Coordinator Ron Romanick, and arrived along with Senior Advisor for the Mets Minor Leagues, Guy Conte.

I asked both Conte and Romanick that it seemed that the team wasn’t overacting to the myriad amount of SP injuries in the system and was the plan to hold the course until sometime after May Both said yes, it was just cold just about everywhere (including Savannah and Florida) and that “we’ll get through this’. They also said none of the injuries were career threatening.

3pm – I watched Steven Matz throw a side session. He seemed to be concentrating on his curve and I’m not sure Frank Viola was happy with the results. His fastball, as usual, was sharp and accurate.
Next up was converted third baseman Jack Kuebler who threw a lot of soft stuff. He also threw a couple of very unsuccessful screwballs.

Lastly, Jeff Reynolds took an extended amount of groundballs at both second and third, neither of which were very successful.

I’ll cover the Steven Matz interview in another post.

Kevin Plawecki declined an interview having to see the trainer regarding one of his eyes.


Werdna said...

Was Taylor injured in his last start?? Pulled side muscle?

Mack Ade said...

Yes... good spirits... actually in uniform with wrapping on outside

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