So, in my “Call to Arms” series, I state the obvious: when it comes to starters: the Mets' cupboards are bursting.

Seven current big league starters:
Colon, Harvey, deGrom, Wheeler, Niese, Gee, and Montero.

Two uber-prospects who on many other teams could be in the starting rotation in April 2015: Thor and Matz

Three dudes who have made quite the case as to being major league ready, or nearly so:
Logan Verrett, Matt Bowman, and Tyler Pill.

Then the next rung of 3:
Erik Goeddel, Greg Peavey, and Gabe Ynoa.  This #13 - #15 category of starters comprises borderline guys, or ones showing great promise but who are a little further back from the majors in terms of youth and lower development level.  Gabriel Ynoa falls into the latter promising youth category, and Ynoa is the topic for today.

Gabe turned just 21 in 2014, yet has a Kershaw-like career mark of 38-16, with a 3.00 ERA and a 1.10 WHIP in nearly 500 innings.  Strong results, and a lot of pro innings for a 21 year old.

Ynoa came out of the developmental league with a 1.99 ERA in 2010, at 17 years of age.  He next was in rookie ball as an 18 year old in 2011.  The signs of something special were already there, as he walked just 12 guys in 138 innings spanning those 2 years. 

He tossed 77 innings in 2012 as one of the Brooklyn Cyclones' Fab 5 rotation, going 5-2, 2.23 ERA with a 0.93 WHIP.

He then put up a superlative 2013 in the land of the Gnats, going 17-4, including 2 strong playoff wins alongside Steve Matz.  Wonder which team won the playoffs that year? Hint: the team is named after an annoying small bug mentioned earlier in this paragraph.

In that 2013 campaign, including the playoffs, Gabe put up a stellar 2.57 ERA and only walked a mere 18 guys in 150 innings, while striking out 125.

So onward to 2014, where Gabe followed along with Steve Matz (with slightly less success) on up to St Lucie and AA Binghamton.  But still successful:  11-4, 4.07, 148 innings, just 25 walks, and 106 Ks and a 1.31 WHIP.  But the 169 hits (a .285 BAA) constitute a yellow flag.  That has to come down.  And one rough playoff start.

Higher levels expose flaws.  Did Ynoa's lower success signal that he is more Mark Cohoon than Steve Matz?  Not so.  He is a very young guy being pushed forward to help him develop quickly.  And reports I’ve seen indicate that his high 80s velocity in 2012 moved to low 90s in 2014.  So if I were picking a comparative individual, I'd pick Rafael Montero.  Hopefully Ynoa will be as good, or close to as good, as Montero when all is said and done. 

Which I hope means both Rafael and Gabriel will be at worst 3rd or 4th rotation pieces.  Maybe a #5, but that’s OK.

It will be cool to see what Gabriel Ynoa brings to the fore in 2015.  I hope for a strong first half of 2015 in Bingo, followed by a promotion to Vegas later in 2015.  Maybe he ticks up to 93-94.  Maybe he's a Met by mid-2016, or perhaps more likely another attractive trade piece, unless the Mets are planning to go with a 12 man starting rotation.

So, of the 3 in my #13-#15 starter power ranking, he appears to have the most upside potential, although Mr. Goeddel may beg to differ.  So I put Ynoa at #13 in my Call to Arms list, Goeddel at #14 and Peavey at #15.  But then I thought some more, and let Peavey split that spot with Darin Gorski, as both are getting up there in years, both have struggled at AAA, and both have had their share of failures as well as successes in the minors.  My take is between the two, perhaps one major league fringe starter will emerge.  I'll deal with Peavey and Gorski in my next report (Volume 6), to follow in a few days.

So, just a thought for you to think about: below that level of 15 guys (actually 16), are there more possible starter arms? 

Sure.  Alderson’s Army has other divisions.

In the "Disappointing So Far, or Due to Injuries, Who the Heck Knows?" Category, there are Michael Fulmer, Matt Koch, Domingo Tapia, Rainy Lara, and the Luis boys: Mateo and Cessa.  Brings us up to 22.

In the "Further Down the Development Road" category, we have a boatload: Robert Gsellman; John Gant; Miller Diaz; Chris Flexen; Rob Whelan; #1 NY Penn League prospect Marcos Molina; Corey Oswalt; Casey Meisner; Andrew Church; Martirez Arias; and the Taylor boys, Logan Taylor and Blake Taylor.  Brings us up to 34.  And I’m probably forgetting somebody.

Will all 34 start on the big league level?  Never works that way.

But I bet 15-20 of them might.  The seven listed up top already have. So to get to 15-20, only 8-13 of the remaining 27 guys would have to start in the bigs.  Given their pitching records (and pedigree, for the younger guys) so far, I thing that is quite reasonable to project.

Unreal.  Simply unreal.

Have a great day.


Mack Ade said...

Afternoon Thomas -

Great series.

Ynoa may someday become a very special starter in the majors, but probably not for the Mets. There just are too many pitchers ahead of him (+ Matz).

My guess is you will see him dealt in a future package as the 2nd guy... sort of like the Yuz.Petit add on in the past.

Will 'we' misshim? Well, do we miss Petit? Do we miss Collin McHugh? I don't think so. It seems like it's more of kudos for them for their success.

Thomas Brennan said...

Thanks, Mack, and absolutely.

We can put Gabe out on Baseball E Bay at the right time, get good value for him, and let him pursue his dream pitching elsewhere.

Dylan Gee hit at the right time for his ability level. A lot of these guys like Gabe are, and will be, running head-long into a real crowd of competitive talent.

In that case, it ain't who brung ya, it's just getting there!

eraff said...

"Unreal. Simply unreal."

Thomas Brennan said...

It IS unreal. Keep reading the series. Many quality arms to come in the series.

Anonymous said...

What about Mazzoni? Not sure he sticks as a starter, but he might have the best fastball of the bunch. One concern about Gnoa is his low K rate throughout. Don't want to be too Sabermetric, but if you have light velocity, don't miss bats and stay around the zone, upper level hitters will start to do some damage, which he started to experience this year. I think he is more a Robles comp than Montero.

Thomas Brennan said...

Robles has been missing lots of bats in relief. Actually, Mazzoni is in my series Vol. 9 as a reliever. Yes, he is a starter, and anothjer team might keep him there, but I think he cracks the Mets' pen soon in similar vein to Famili. Good points. Thanks

Thomas Brennan said...

Wrote that quickly. Meant to say Robles has been striking out a lot more than Ynoa since he turned reliever, so I still think a Ynoa comp to a more advanced Montero might be a closer comp.

eraff said...

I've just entered a party and everyone else is really smashed...it's like that.

EVERYONE---give me your keys!!!! You can keep Drinking, but I'll call you a Cab!

Thomas Brennan said...

Eraff: Hey, bartender, can you serve me up a Yasmani Tomas? Sandy Alderson is my designated driver. And keep the change.

Mack's Mets © 2012