8/28/16

BUT IT'S JUST VEGAS, RIGHT?

6 comments
BUT IT'S JUST VEGAS, RIGHT? by Tom Brennan

I felt before 2016 like Nimmo and Cecchini were bust first round Mets picks.

At the start of the season in Vegas, in April, nothing was happening to cause me to change my mind, as both started out a powerless 10 for 55.

But then the rest of the season happened.

Brandon Nimmo likes the high .380's.  In June, he hit ,388.  In July he hit .389.  In August so far, .389.  He is hitting .346/.420/.531 on the season despite the slow April start.  A word of caution: he is hitting .387 at home this year, and just .311 on the road, but that is still not bad.  Also, just 9 HRs in 400 plate appearances - hopefully that # will eventually expand.  He hit just .238 in 240 at bats in Binghamton last year after a mid year promotion from A ball, hence my skepticism coming into this season about Brandon.  A skeptic no longer.  It is hard to imagine he will not get major playing time with the Mets in 2017, absent a trade.

After a 5 for 5 (2 double) night, giving him 8 hits in his last 2 games, Gavin Cecchini sits at .325/.388/.449 with just 52 Ks in 109 games.  Very similar #'s to last year's .317/.377/.442 with Binghamton in AA.  Gavin's big flaw earlier this year (besides his slow start) was a ghastly error rate at SS…but over the past 40 games, he has his error rate down to a very normal level.   He is still 22, so a guy who looked to me like a bust prior to 2015, then opened some eyes with a very solid 2015 has opened them even wider.   Similar caution note to that of Nimmo: Gavin is hitting .343 in Vegas, .302 on the road.

Such strong offensive numbers are no guarantee coming out of Vegas, as I recall in 2014 Matt den Dekker having a strong stretch where he hit .420 for Vegas over an extended # of games…but it did not carry over to the big.  But both Nimmo and Cecchini are considerably younger than Dekker was at the time, and both have a far better contact rate.

A few starting pitcher notes before I wrap up:

Harol Gonzalez is 6-2, 1.57 for Brooklyn, remarkable when one considers the Cyclones are threatening to break the NY Penn League batting average low, currently sitting at .213.  Only 4 earned runs in his last 8 starts and more than a K per inning in 2016.  Go, Harol, go.

PJ Conlon did not win his last start, but gave up no earned runs in just under 6 innings of work.  He sits at 11-2, 1.73 over 137 IP, and likely is the Mets' minors pitcher of the year.  ERA just over 1.50 since being promoted to St Lucie a while ago.

Gabe Ynoa shook off a rough stretch of starts for Vegas, and has tossed back to back 8 inning scoreless starts. He sits at 12-5, 3.97 (an excellent ERA for Vegas) and now is an amazing 59-30 in his minor league Mets career over almost 800 IP, and still just 23.  


Rafael Montero - after 8 very strong AA starts, he will be starting for the Mets Monday.  May he experience a major league career renaissance. 







6 comments:

Thomas Brennan said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Thomas Brennan said...

METS HAVE 87 HOMERS IN 63 HOME GAMES SO FAR THIS YEAR. THT PROJECTS TO 115 HOMETOWN MET HOMERS.

In 2009, when Citi Cavern was first built, they hit only 49.

While we have better homer hitters this year, shorter fences are so much better.

Thomas Brennan said...

Joe Pesnanski made a great observation today, one that applies to the Mets' signing of Grandy and any other mid 30's hitters they may wish to sign or re-sign:

….it’s easy to build this idea in your mind that 35-plus players are sometimes useful, sometimes not.

But here’s the hidden part of the puzzle, the thing your mind doesn’t consider: Most good baseball players now in that 35 to 39 age bracket are OUT OF BASEBALL. And so, we just don’t think about them.

Shane Victorino is out of baseball. Alex Rios is out of baseball. David DeJesus was a fine player — he’s out of baseball. Nick Swisher was an All-Star — he’s out of baseball. Andruw Jones put up a near-Hall of Fame career. Rafael Furcal was a superb shortstop for a good while. Michael Cuddyer, Adam Dunn, Dan Uggla, Adam LaRoche, Eric Chavez, Brian Roberts, Aramis Ramirez, Orlando Hudson, Vernon Wells, Travis Hafner … none of these guys are even 40 years old.

The list keeps going. When was the last time you thought about Kevin Youkilis? He was, for a time, a fantastic player, an MVP candidate, a Boston hero. He’s been out of baseball for three years now. He’s younger than Albert Pujols.

How about Josh Hamilton? It wasn’t so long ago that Tom Verducci was calling him the best player in baseball. He might give it another shot next spring, nobody knows for sure, but essentially he’s out of baseball. He’s younger than Albert Pujols.

Grady Sizemore. Amazing player. He probably deserved to be MVP when he was 23 years old. At 25, he hit 33 homers, stole 38 bases, walked 98 times and won the Gold Glove. He has tried comeback after comeback and has not played a full season since 2009. He’s younger than Albert Pujols.

Josh Willingham. Corey Hart. Cody Ross. Carlos Quentin, Mark Ellis, Jason Bay, Chone Figgins, Aaron Rowand … we can keep going on like this for a lot longer. Jack Cust. Bill Hall. Rocco Baldelli. Hank Blalock — remember him? Jose Lopez. Brandon Inge. Adam Everett. None of these players are in the league of Pujols, of course. But they were all viable Major League players, all had good careers, and they all aged out. This is what happens.

Gary Seagren said...

Thomas VERY true. The list goes on and on and yet owners still sign 30+ players to insane contracts and yet everyone will have a s**t fit if we don't sign Cespedes. Walker would be another possibility but the bad back thing sounds scary and if we sign him Cecchini will surely end up hitting .300 and play for 12 years with somebody else so that and expecting this ownership to do the right thing is a real long shot...remember this is the same ownership that designed Citi for Reyes's triple ability instead of Wright's right center power (now I love a triple as much as anyone but wouldn't David's 30 plus HR # be far more productive than Reyes's say 15 to 18 triples?) and then went and signed DW long term instead and we know how that's worked out. I just have no faith that we won't see Grandy for all of 2017 and I can hear TC now: "He just needs to get it going".

Gary Seagren said...

Thomas I would love to talk about the Mets with you. My email is seagren@verizon.net if your interested.

Thomas Brennan said...

Gary, I will try you later in the week. If I forget, remind me - crazy week coming up.

Cespedes seems like the tip of guy who could defy the age odds, except he already has an achilles' heel. I agree on Walker - like him a lot, but we've seen Wright's back already.

Mack's Mets © 2012