Mack’s Morning Report – 3-25-16 – Minor League Team Rosters, Positional Ranking: Shortstop, Season Open Preview
Posted by Mack Ade at 8:00 AM
We’re getting to the point that certain minor league affiliates will be playing their own games against other teams at their level. Hopefully, Binghamton, Columbia, and St. Lucie will send me press releases on those games that I can pass on to you.
Roster wise, they are starting to shape up.
In Las Vegas, pitchers Dario Alvarez, Duane Below, Chasen Bradford, Chase Huchingson, Seth Lugo, Rafael Montero, and Zack Thornton have already been added to the 2016 roster.
In the field, catcher Nevin Ashley, and outfielders Brandon Nimmo and Jayce Boyd (OF-1B) have been assigned.
In Binghamton, Anthony Barbosa will be in the rotation… Josh Smoker will be your feature out of the pen… Raywilly Gomez has been assigned to be the backup catcher, and Victor Cruzado will join the B-Mets outfield.
No one ‘officially’ has been assigned or projected to be assigned to either Columbia or St. Lucie yet.
Fangraphs http://www.fangraphs.com/blogs/2016-positional-power-rankings-shortstop/ continues it series of positional ranking with… shortstop –
#16 – Mets –
We have now reached the tier where we hit the players who are clearly below average. Perhaps these players are not well below average, but expecting more than average production in 2016 would be unfair. And so it is with Asdrubal Cabrera. The Mets new shortstop has hit roughly 15 home runs every season for the last four years, in total providing roughly average offense with below average defense to form a slightly below average player. The defense might not matter as the Mets pitching staff is currently projected to strike out every hitter they face this season.
If Cabrera is not ready to start the season due to knee issues, the Mets declared their confidence in Wilmer Flores as backup by putting Ruben Tejada on waivers. Flores had a solid season last year, and the 24-year-old might actually be better than Cabrera at this point anyway. Flores cannot seem to talk a walk, which lowers his ceiling as well as his on-base percentage, but he does not strike out much, has decent pop, and is likely better than Cabrera on defense. He should get decent playing time for the Mets, but is not likely to be a difference-maker as the team tries to hold off the Nationals in the East.
Mack – Not the most glowing analysis here, but we Mets fans know this is about where we are at on this position. It says a lot about a player when you say that Wilmer Flores may play better than you defensively. Or is that it says less?
From Wednesday… The Yankees Cesar Puello went 0-1 and made two errors… .238… Arizona’s Tyler Clippard had one scoreless inning… 7.71-ERA… Astrubel Cabrera took six at bats in a minor league game..
Matt Harvey only hit 91-92 in the first inning, which makes me wonder if the Mets starters are working on some variations in this last rotation… hit 94 in the second, according to the SNY gun which may be off (per scout, fastball was 94-97)… 55 pitches in the second inning… after 3-IP: 80-pitches, 6-ER, 7-H, 4-BB
An absolutely piss poor defensive play by CF Yoenis Cespedes in the second inning, allowing A.J. Reed to have an inside the park home run when all he had to do was pick up the ball and throw it in, holding him to a double. He seemed to be much more interested in spitting out his sunflower seeds. It completely rattled Harvey. You can’t keep playing baseball like this, even if it is only pre-season. pre-season
JV game vs. Boston… Logan Verrett: 4.0-IP, 0-R, 1-K, 0-BB, 0.90… the good news was Eric Goeddel got an inning in coming back from a big time injury last season… the bad news: 1.0-IP, 3-H, 2-R, 1-HR, 18.00
Mack observation – With the Mets two loses today, they have now lost nine pre-season games in a row.
What we need to do is look a little deeper…
There are 10 ‘hitters’ that have 30 or more at-bats, but only two (Michael Conforto: .222 – Yoenis Cespedes: .419) are projected starters.
Three of those 10 ‘hitters’ are minor leagues (T.J. Rivera: .257 – Travis Taijeron: .364 – Dilson Herrera: .100) that are projected to open the season in the minors.
Two starters (Jacob DeGrom: 0.90 – Noah Syndergaard: 1.54 seem ready to start the season. Another (Matt Harvey: 6.30) had a shaky start today. Bartolo Colon pitched well early this week, but still has a 6.62 ERA, and Steven Matz comes in at 8.31.
Relief wise, only Jeurys Familia (.050-WHIP), and Logan Verrett (0.90-WHIP) seem ready, though a possible addition would be the pleasant surprise of Jim Henderson (0.75-WHIP).
Addison Reed (1.36-WHIP), Hansel Robles (1.56-WHIP), Sean Gilmartin (1.60-WHIP), Jerry Blevens (1.67-WHIP), and Antonio Bastardo (1.71-WHIP) do not seem to be game ready.
Frankly, it’s time to stop playing the minor leaguers and get the real team ready for the real season.
They just don’t seem ready yet.