Going into Thursday nights game (one in which I was going until the stupid weather channel scared me away) Amed has found himself hitting over .300. He's a career .259 hitter so far in the minors. He also has hit his first homer of the season, a WALKOFF in the first week. He's had 5 in about 238 games combined as a professional. Heck, after stealing 13 bases in 105 games last year, Rosario already has 3 in 7 games. Long story short, is Mr. Rosario starting to live up to all the hype and expectations this year?
Regardless of the career stats, I know what I saw last year. I saw the bat speed, the running speed, the ABOVE average defense and arm, and the looks of a talented yet extremely young prospect. Of course, being 20 years old is not exactly old or anything, but I believe that by leaving let back in high A ball again, we now see what the Mets have been talking about for years.
The Mets, perhaps surprisingly, have entrenched Rosario right into the #3 spot in the batting order for the St. Lucie Mets, and so far he has been responding. If I were to point out a negative, I guess it would be the glaring stat of zero walks in his first 32 at bats. But he only has 7 strikeouts during this span, so he's simply getting pitches he apparently likes and he's swingintg and making contact on them.
Writers like myself have continued to pencil him into the lineup opening day 2018. And I have enjoyed creating my own theory of the Mets signing Cabrera to be the bridge, and not receiving that 3rd year option from the Mets, thus creating the opening.
Of course, I have never meant any of my thoughts, writings or opinions to be in any way a knock on Mr. Gavin Cecchini, another top Mets SS prospect who is the one all the way up at the AAA level and is next in line at this point. But I'm sticking with my own eye ball test and time spent watching Rosario LIVE.
If I were to continue to play evaluator, I would still not project Rosario out to be a future #3 hitter at the MLB level. The St. Lucie Mets have a struggling yet 80 grade speed leadoff man in Champ Stuart, along with 'veteran' type hitters hitting in the other middle of the order spots right now. To be honest, I was expecting Rosario to be back down in the 6th hole again just to keep the pressure off. But I must say I like the idea of hitting him 3rd. He statistically gets the extra at bats, (especially if the rumors were true about the St. Lucie stay being very temporary), and he gets a little experience in perhaps some stressful situations and positions to be in while hitting in such a spot.
Obviously I don't want to overreact about a 20 year old and his stats at the A ball level. But again, we are talking about a top 3 organizational prospect who has not been showing anything of substance, on paper/in the box scores until this year. And again this is why I simply point out the fact that he is most likely just coming into his own, still at a young age, and is just now starting to combine the tools he has now.
Even his one homer was a rocket, opposite field, to win the game for the team. Regarding average, it would be too hard to predict what it would be for the year, especially if he finds himself moving on to AA ball this year. If he were stay up into the all star break, I would say Rosario stays above .300. To be conservative I would put him at 5 home runs (remember, Conforto couldn't even reach double digits down in that heat). I believe he will hit double digits in stolen bases and doubles, and maybe even a couple more triples.
We don't have to label Rosario a superstar. Even if all 5 of his tools develop, there's only so much hype and hope we can put into a kid who will be 20 years old the entire season. But the potential has been there, and it is showing now more than ever. All we need now is to sit back and enjoy.