Sometimes there are ups and downs in life.  
Mets' minors lads, though, have their downs and ups.
In other words, previous week crappy, this past week much improved.
AAA Las Vegas and AA Binghamton both rebounded with very solid weeks, including a Bingo 6 game win streak; and St Lucie and Columbia combined to win half their games last week. All told, the 4 teams are a combined 7 over .500, with the Lucites leading the foursome at 14-10.  So how are some guys doing?  Let's lift the hood and look at last week's Monday thru Sunday fun and games.
WUILMER BECERRA: Willie B hit over .400 for the week to climb to .371.  What is most exciting to me about the 21 year old St Lucie OF is who he is doing all that hitting against.  How does a batting average of .396 against RIGHTIES for the righty hitter strike you?  Nothing short of amazing to me. Consider also that he tore up lefties last year...exciting to ponde ra guy who may be ready to explode. (Monday nite update: Becerra added 3 more hits - against eighties - and is now hitting .421 against them!)

T J Rivera: 12 hits, 2 homers, and 7 RBIs last week.  Only 8 whiffs in 18 games. Hitting .338.  Nice.  Real nice. 
Let me add this: some guys hit the famed Mack AA Wall: T J got to AA in mid 2014 and has since put in about the equivalent of a 162 game stretch of # 2 hitter time, and what has he done?  Busted the wall: .336, 669 ABs, 105 R, 225 H, 47 2B, 10 HR, 91 RBIs.  Amazing, really. (2 more hits Monday night)
Vegas hit squad started firing on all cylinders last week, rapidly climbing to finish the week at .275.  
OF Ty Kelly still has a .483 OBP (2nd in PCL) despite getting on just twice in his last 13 plate appearances to end the week.  Amazing.
IF TJ Rivera - a Star of the Week...see above.
OF Travis Taijeron sitting at .296/.407/.521; encouragingly, he is hitting a whopping .364 against righties so far....his numbers are usually propped up by utterly destroying lefties, so he may be on the cusp of a big year if the righty trend continues.
IF Matt Reynolds (.284) had a 10 game hit streak snapped Sunday,
Struggling mighty in a limited role?  Danny Muno, 1 for 23 with 3 errors.
Pitching?  The Sean and Gabe Show continues, as both Sean Gilmartin and Gabe Ynoa have ERAs well below 2 after 4 starts each.  Gabe's lone concern to me is his continued low K rate (12 in 24 IP), but a 1.48 ERA indicates it is working for him.  It worked for guys like Whitey Ford too. (Monday nite, Ynoa added a solid winning start, pitching into the 7th)
Chase Bradford sports a spiffy 0.73 ERA after 9 relief outings.  Chase those bums outa the box! 

Rafael Montero 
had 1 so-so outing this week, 9 H, 3 R in 5 IP. 18 H in 14 IP.

Seth Lugo's fourth start was not good - but an improvement.  It did, however, bring his ERA down to 9.68.  May he be pitcher of the month in May. He certainly hasn't been pitcher of the year so far.

Paul Sewald – always doing well. He may have the best long term minor league stats of anyone not yet in the majors - anywhere in baseball.  His career #'s are beyond sterling: 204 IP, nearly 250 K's, 1.89 ERA, very few walks and only 7 homers allowed.  And a 13-6 record with 49 of 52 saves.  
Those #'s say one thing to me: Queens can't be too far away. (Add a perfect inning Mon. nite save)

Dario Alvarez - a bad outing Sunday marred an uptrend for Dario, who has K'd 17 in 8.1 IP.  Don't forget flame throwing Josh Smoker (4.15, 15 K in 8.2 IP).

 This was, however, a very different week for 1st rounders Gavin Cecchini and Brandon Nimmo. Still only 1 HR between them, but progress is progress, with BOTH climbing over 60 points this week. (Cecchini added 2 for 3 Monday nite, climbing to .282, 100 points higher than 8 days earlier)

Nimmo had that one game where he went 0-4, with 4 Ks.  Otherwise?  In his last 6 games, including that stinker, he had 9 hits and 2 walks and sits at .260.  Whew!  
Cecchini sputtered through mid-week, sliding to .182.  But those last 4 games, oh baby: he had 8 hits (including a tater) and 2 walks to climb to .261. Time to stay on a tear, Gavin.

A bounce back week for the B Mets but most of the hitters are parked between .233 and .278, so someone needs to get hot, pronto.

Jeff McNeil is still out after the first 3 games (this is my get well card, Jeff),
Dominic Smith has crept up to .259, with a .412 OBP.  He does have a team-leading 16 RBIs in 21 games, so once he really gets started, maybe we’ll get a 100 RBI season from Smitty.
Phil Evans is doing his Danny Muno imitation at 4 for 28.  He sits at .232 after about 1500 career plate appearances, in case you were wondering. 
The outfield is still struggling – Cruzado and Sabol are a combined 15 for 91. Jared King is the lone bright OF bat, with 7 hits in the past 4 games, but just 26 at bats so far this season for King.
Pitching-wise, Rob "the Giz" Gsellman lost Sunday despite allowing no earned runs.  sits at 1-0, 1.45 after 3 very fine starts.  
Tyler Pill?  2 terrible starts, then 2 great ones, with 14 IP and 2 earned runs.

The Pen:
mostly unimpressive so far.  Let’s leave it at that.
The SLM's are 14-10 in 2016.  HR hitting has not gotten them where they are, as they have managed a mere 8 HRs in 24 games. 
SS Amed Rosario continues a fine campaign with 11 extra base hits in 23 games and a .305/.340/.537 stat line.  Almost time for Met fans to start drooling?  Patience, rabid fans...he won't be 21 until Thanksgiving.

Luis Guillorme is heating up a bit, and is up to .247.  Amazingly, the slick glove man, in over 1,000 career at bats, has ZERO triples and homers.  By comparison, the patron saint of slap hitters, Bud Harrelson, was like Giancarlo Stanton, with 45 triples & 7 dingers in 5,516 plate appearances. I await your first triple, Luis.
OF Wuilmer Becerra - see above. My co-star of the week.
C Tomas Nido is hitting nicely at .313 (just 6 Ks in 67 ABs).
Pitchers?  Glad you asked.
Casey Delgado moved up to 4-0, 2.67 with his 4th solid start to the season. Undefeated is a nice place to be.  Ricky Knapp slipped to 3-1 with a solid, 6 IP, 3 R loss, and a nifty ERA of 2.38.
Corey Oswalt followed 2 fine starts with a bad fourth start - he allows too many hits, (294 in 263 career) and needs to put that on a diet. 
1) Chris Flexen was 0-3, 4.82, but then tossed a gem for his first win this week, dropping his ERA to 3.76.  I bet he takes off from here. 
2) Scarlyn Reyes: a decent start after 3 ghastly outings, but all it got him was a 4th straight loss, with an ERA that descended from the stratosphere to 9.18.

Remaining really impressive out of the St Lucie pen are Tim PetersonKevin McGowan, Al Baldonado, and Ben Griset (combined 46 IP, 0.97 ERA, 59 Ks).  Some other good ones, too.

Two hitting stars thru my prior update remain at the top of the Fireflies’ list:
IF Vinny Siena: Vinny (“you can call-a me Vincenzo, capisce?”) has still been on base almost 50% (26 hits and 19 walks in 23 games), not to mention 21 runs scored.  Some guys just don’t like to sit down.
3B David Thompson, hitting a solid .287 with 12 extra base hits and a terrific 27 RBIs (7 games out of the last 10 with 2 or more RBIs) – some of those RBIs no doubt due to Siena being on base constantly in front of him.  Both need to cut down on the Ks (a combined 45 times in 47 games).  

1B Dash Winningham; Dash has an absolutely amazing low K rate (7 in 85 plate appearances, one in his last 9 games) for a young future slugger, and a .372 OBP in 21 games.  Consider that he struck out 102 times in about 475 plate appearances in 2014 and 2015 and the improvement is astonishing in that regard.
OF Ivan Wilson - his strikeouts year to date are improved and he clocked his 3rd homer in an 8 game span on Saturday nite.  Ivan, do what Dash does and keep those K’s dropping.
SS Milton Ramos (a sluggish .200 through 19 games)
3B J.C. Rodriguez - .140 on April 23 but a 7 game hit streak since (8 hits, and 4 walks).  Very nice bounce back week, JC.
The Fire Flies' hurlers doing well this week include born-in-Belfast–Ireland’s   PJ Conlon (3-0, 1.14, 1 walk in 23.2 IP).  The Lefty Leprechaun is sitting at an amazing 0.66 after 21 career outings and 40.2 IP.  
Joe Shaw and Chase Ingram stay solid - both are 2-1, with ERA’s in the 2’s, with a combined 52 Ks and 7 BB’s in 43 IP.   In the pen, Alex Palsha sits at 4.22, but has K’d 19 in 10.2 innings.
Lots of great stories. Some less great.  
Everyone has their downs and ups.  Ups are better.
I was excited this week. I suspect I'll be excited next week too. 
What say you, reader?





Zozo said...

2018 lineup?

SS Rosario
2 Herrera
RF Becerra
LF Conforto
1st Smith
3rd Thompson
C Plawecki
CF Lagares

Adam Smith said...

Really exciting to see both Rosario and Becerra putting it together. I expect to see Rosario in Bingo before May is out, and Becerra, if he keeps hitting, around the all-star break. The Bronx's TJ Rivera is writing himself a really nice story. I wonder if he might be first man up (ahead of Reynolds) in case of an injury to an infielder. Even without an injury, I think he has a legit argument to replace Soup on the roster at some point this season. I certainly wouldn't complain.

Mack Ade said...

Zozo put up an interesting 2018 lineup which definitely would lead the league in... singles.

Thomas Brennan said...

@ ZOZO: looks good, but I really would like to see Cespedes considered long term. This guy just might hit 50 homers someday.

Mack, I agree with you mostly...Conforto could actually hit us 40 homers some day, but the rest would be light on Long ball if and until proven otherwise.

Adam, Soup hasn't hit since before they invented soup. I'd be open to Rivera as first call up (sorry, Matt, who BTW struck out 4 times last night) and call him up soon, if Soup fails to hit much longer.

Anonymous said...

Soup has been up 11 times this year. If one of his lineouts or ground outs goes through for a single his average would jump from .182 to .272. The numbers don't mean a thing.

It's hard to hit when you don't play.

I am curious about Rivera too, and he might be a better option than Soup, or even Flores, but it's totally unfair to make any assessment about Soup's contributions so far. He's a classic 25th man, can play a variety of positions, glad to be on the team, etc.

James Preller

Thomas Brennan said...

James, in one sense I agree on Soup. Cecchini's brief surge shows a guy's next hot streak may be one at bat away.

But Soup, in a tough sporadic playing mode, has been a failure since his early hot spurt on making the bigs in 2014. Starting in August 2014, Soup is 48 for 258 (.186), with a slug % well below .300.

Seems it couldn't hurt to try T J in that spot. Thankfully, compared to last year, that spot should see little playing time.

Thomas Brennan said...

Soup has done OK with walks and HBP, giving him a MLB career .317 OBP, so he may be below standard for a # 25 guy, but in fairness not a failure since he joined the bigs.

Mack's Mets © 2012