Tom Brennan - Mets Minors Catcher Prospects


Tom Brennan - Mets Minors Catcher Prospects

At the major league level, Travis d'Arnaud is the latest example of baseball being a migh-tee funny game.

Last year, an awful 15 RBIs in 251 at bats.  

This year, through Monday, an amazing 16 RBIs in just 56. at bats, despite his average (.214) being 33 points lower so far this year vs. last.  

Go figure.  I guess it is called hitting when it counts! Nice!

Back ups Rene Rivera and Kevin Plawecki have hit an expected .239 in 41 at bats. Plawecki can't pitch, tho'. (Anthony Dimino can, though - see below).

Defensively, d'Arnaud had gunned down just 1 of 9 stealers, Rivera 4 of 7.  Both around my expectations.

Catcher at the major league level is a fragile spot for the Mets...Iron Man is a movie d'Arnaud has seen many times while on the DL...our guys for sure aren't the tandem of Yogi Berra and Elston Howard.

So how are the guys manning the tools of ignorance in the minors doing so far?  The ones who could arrive on the scene in Queens?  Best to worst, IMO?

PAT MAZELKA (High A) - cream of the crop so far in 2017.  The 23 year old lefty bat is hitting .338/.405/.538 in 19 games with 17 RBIs.  He has only caught in 14 games, in which the opposition (perhaps thinking of his defensive rep) have tried to take advantage - they've attempted 37 steals, of which Pat has nailed 12, a decent 32%.

KEVIN PLAWECKI (AAA) - .270/.310/.432 in 37 at bats.  Just 4 Ks.  Gunned down 2 of 5 stealers.  Currently with the Mets, for whom he now has 4 at bats in 2017.  How long will he stay?  Up to him to hit.

TOMAS NIDO (AA) - at 23, he is exactly 5 years younger than Carillo.  Nido, the 2016 St Lucie Mets batting champ, got off to a brutal start with the bat, but has 6 hits in his last 4 games, lifting him to .196.  Just 5 Ks in 56 PAs, so the 23 year old is making plenty of contact, and my guess is he will be pushing .300 soon.  

Surprisingly, after cutting down 40% of would be base stealers in 2015 and 2016, he has only nabbed 2 of 15 in 2017 so far.

ANTHONY DIMINO (High A) - who exactly is this guy?  The 2015 28th rounder for the Mets is a lefty hitter who is hitting .451 in 51 at bats in 2017 (now seem to be playing him almost every game - good), and a career .340 hitter (without power so far, I have to be fair and balanced),

He impressively has gunned down 6 of11 would-be thieves in 2017. He even pitched a scoreless inning and notched a save, so he does it all except hit for power.

Dimino and Mazelka are splitting most of the catching duties in St Lucie right now.  Nice lefty hitting duo.

XORGE CARILLO (AAA) - .244 with 2 doubles and 3 homers in 44 at bats.  But 13 of 14 steals against.  Carillo recently turned 28, though, so unclear if he will ever make the final hurdle to the bigs.

ALI SANCHEZ (AA) - his hit tool is sadly in the repair shop - 8 singles in 55 at bats.  Oddly, the 20 year old has fanned just 5 times.  So he is hitting .160 when he makes contact - weird.

He is, however, # 1 in the entire Mets systems at gunning down base runners, with 7 of 15 nailed in 2017, and 99 of 204 in his career.  

Ali, please start hitting like the "sting like a bee" Ali.

COLTON PLAIA (AA) - 26 year old back up catcher is hitting .259 (7 for 27).  Career .253 hitter who has little power and has gunned down 31% of base stealers in his career.

BRANDON BROSHER (A) - back up catcher with a huge propensity to strike out.  He is 5 for 23 at the plate this year, but of his 18 outs, an amazing 15 by strikeout.  Career 183 Ks in 425 at bats.  He has power, which is useless without contact.  Nailed 3 of 8 stealers in 2017.

DAN RIZZIE (High A) - as St Lucie's 3rd catcher, Dan's hitting .115 (3 for 26, but with 7 walks) this year, and .153 this year and last.  It sounds odd, but he has a great eye for a .153 hitter, with low strikeouts, as his .289 career OBP shows.  In other words, he hits like Grandy, only better.  19 of 69 caught stealing - needs improvement. 13th rounder in 2016.

CONCLUSION:  Minor league Mets catching dudes include no superstar-potential guys like the Yanks' Gary Sanchez, but besides Kevin Plawecki, catchers Mazelka, Nido, Dimino, and Sanchez show major league potential.  Let's see how the season unfolds to see who surges to the fore.


Thomas Brennan said...

off topic, but Reyes and Conforto came up big last night, as did the pen.

Mack Ade said...

David Rubin and I were talking recently and he asked me who I thought were catcher prospects in the Mets system.

I paused and told him that I thought there were none, but I added to that statement that I don't think there are many in baseball period.

Clemson's Seth Beer is favorite to be picked number one overall in the next draft. Maybe he will turn my head.

Mack Ade said...

also off the topic...

it looks like starter Wilfredo Boscon was pulled after 2.1 innings last night...


Hobie said...

Out there.

Have either Mazelka or Dimino tried 3B? Just wonderin'.

Mack Ade said...

Hobie -

I'll ask Dimino for ya.

Reese Kaplan said...

I wonder how T.J. Rivera would look wearing the tools of ignorance?

Gary Seagren said...

Mets fever..Catch it! sorry I couldn't resist

Mack Ade said...

Hobie -

From Anthony:

Yes I have a lot at my first school and in high school. Played one game here in st Lucie

Thomas Brennan said...

The way some Met prospects underwhelm or never pan out, Mack, would the Mets eventually have a Cold Beer night for a slumping Seth Beer? Just kidding there, obviously. Anyway, the Brewers would probably select him first - a natural fit!

If Beer is seen as a Gary Sanchez type, I'd be good with selecting him in this draft. We have what I think are good catchers in the list, but no one equal to Sanchez in my article. Unless, of course, Dimino continues to spit in Ted Williams' eye and hits .450 the rest of the way.

Can the Mets have a Disabled List night - give out free slings and casts to the first 15,000 fans?

Mack Ade said...

Tom -

Promo line at Clemson...

"Have a cold beer..."

Hobie said...

Thanks, Mack.

And Anthony, keep hitting and I can see you leapfrogging Urena & Thompson at 3B pretty quickly.

Thomas Brennan said...

Hobie I echo your sentiments. Dimino is really hitting so well.

Mack's Mets © 2012