Mack - Random Thoughts



I’m sitting in the waiting room of the Beaufort (SC) Naval Hospital for my appointment with my shrink. You see, you can’t get the VA to prescribe certain meds to you unless you check in twice a year to make sure everyone there thinks your sane enough to keep the cycle going.

I had to drive an hour to get here and I’m an hour early for the appointment and, since they offer no Wifi to the vets here (figures), I thought I’d put to paper my thoughts going forward.

I can’t understand why the Mets brass can’t recognize that the fan base needs something to re-energize it. Even a bad first deal would allow room for someone to join this team and begin the process of rebuilding.

Obviously, that ‘first bad deal’ should involve the exit of either Lucas Duda, Astrubel Cabrera, Jose Reyes, Wilmer Flores (please, no!), or T.J. Rivera. This way, either Amed Rosario or Dom Smith could join the team in Flushing. Strangely, right now, Reyes and Rivera seem to have the most to offer to a team trying to win a pennant. Both are playing at the top of their game. Rivera is playing like an all-star.

Speaking of Rivera, how did the whole baseball world miss on this guy? Hitting well in school only led to not being drafted and, if it wasn’t for an old Met calling a Met scout, he probably would be working far out of baseball. Drafting an old shortstop named Jacob deGrom should also show you that, when it comes to baseball, it truly ain’t over until it’s over.

I hope that the Mets brass is keeping track of all the great stats these days being produced by the Latin players in the lower levels of our pipeline. It can’t be just luck. The team has obviously committed more scouting time and money to finding the hidden gems around the world and, once again, we gave out more than one seven figure bonus to the babies last month. I’ve done this for a long time and I’ve never seen this kind of concentration of talent, and production, at these levels. The Kingsport team is stacked with bats and both DSL teams have chip pitchers and bats to spare. We don’t produce great DSL teams. Until this year. Of course, it’s too early to get excited about players at this level, but would we be predicting great things from them if they were dead last in their division? Hell no.

I’m going to keep saying this until blood comes out of my ears… next great Mets player… P Chris Flexen. It will be interesting to see what the Mets will do next with this stud. There’s nothing more for him to do at the AA level and the lack of air in the PCL warrants no trip to Vegas to deflate his confidence. I’d let him finish up in Binghamton, call him up in September to get a taste, and then turn him loose in spring training to secure a rotation slot leaving camp to Queens.

As for the expiring contracts, just get them off the books and replace them with 5-6 mid to high level prospects that can build 2018 depth at the AA and AAA level. Right now, the 2018 AAA-Vegas team looks to be led by SPs Flexen, Corey Oswalt, P.J. Conlon, and Mickey Jannis, C Tomas Nido, IF Luis Guillorme, 3B David Thompson, and OF Kevin Kaczmarski. AA-Binghamton would be led by SP Justin Dunn, Merandy Gonzalez, and Nabil Crismatt, C Pat Mazeika, 1B Peter Alonso, 2B Michael Paez, 3B Jhoan Urena, and OF (don’t say it Brennan!) Wuillmer Becerra. That’s talent, but it’s not great talent. The pipeline needs more, especially on the mound, behind the plate, in the infield, and in the outfield (sic).

And lastly… regarding Guillorme, he has time and again showed us that he is the best middle infielder in the system. Now, he consistently hits over .300. How hard would it be to make a decision NOW to make him a full time second baseman so he can come to Flushing sometime next year and play next to Rosario?


Thomas Brennan said...

Guillorme and Rosario might combine for mediocre major league offense but gold glove middle infield play.

Kingsport hitting .295, with about 6 Latin ballplayers over .300 - spot on, Mack.

Mack, were they playing the theme song Meet the Meds while you were there?

Out of the box thinking is great...signing undrafted TJ RIVERA, SS turned HOF-caliber pitcher deGrom, and signing a .317/.398/.549 outfielder over 25 games Who is a former NFL player whose name escapes me

Thomas Brennan said...

Does Flexen want to start on this road trip? OK by me.

The only strings I can pull for him are my shoelaces, but I promise to pull very hard.

bob gregory said...

I am very concerned that the Mets will be stuck with most of the players they should be moving in trades.

There are just too many potential trading pieces to be moved at the last minute as Alderson's typical mode of operation has been.

Moving some of the lower tier desirable chips should have already taken place in order to not get stuck with them and to create a "floor" to work from in expected cost for the more desirable (Bruce, Reed)

Mack Ade said...

Bob -

Good morning.

Glad you brought this up. I have a piece currently scheduled for Wednesday that is based on the results that the Mets produce no trades during this Hot Stove season

Peter Hyatt said...

If the Mets get stuck with players, expect mediocrity to continue with playing contracts over the future.

Even if the future is dim, sub .500 of playing the contract over even a lessened probability for future success is folly.

It is the bane of having a lame duck manager and GM.

In the homestead, Alderson needed extraordinary results. We went 6-4.

Had we gone 10-0, he might have spoken about "the run" for the wild card spot to MAKE it into the post season (I don't consider wild card single game "post season" though others do. For me, the playoffs is the post season).

Anyone read Phil Mushnick in the NY Post today?

I am interested in your thoughts about his portrayal of Aaron Judge with the reference point of Yoenis Cespedes.

It may be of interest to some readers here. Interesting irony about old school baseball in a young player.


Reese Kaplan said...

I can't say this loudly enough. Get ANYTHING -- even a fringe A-ball prospect -- for the pieces who are not part of 2018. Otherwise you get NOTHING. Plus, as Mack suggests, it would reenergize an apathetic fan base.

Mack Ade said...

Peter -

Frankly, we have an Aaron Judge-like pro-attitude player in the outfield... Michael Conforto.

I agree with you now that re-signing Cespedes was a mistake, but we have bigger fish to fry on this team.

Mack Ade said...

Reese -

This going to be a long week for you as a Mets fan.

Thomas Brennan said...

Conforto is a great kid and most likely be a great player with real power - just not the Kingman power that Judge has.

I believe the Mets do all sorts of financial modeling, and if they can save several million $$ moving a bunch of vets, they'll find a way to do it.

What is the deal with Brandon Nimmo - will he be back anytime soon? If he were healthy and playing, it could push them harder to trade guys and let him play.

What about Lagares? Shouldn't he be back soon unless he hurts himself diving in a pool? Assuming he is back soon, another reason to trade one or two outfielders.

Peter Hyatt said...

Conforto was on his way to AAA in spite of a solid Spring.

I have said since 2015 that he was the most natural hitter since David Wright.

Mack, it may seem like old news, but it is relevant: Conforto's success is a thorn in the side of Cespedes, who is a thorn in the side of the Mets when he is not hitting home runs.

I expect this situation to ebb and flow, but eventually exasperate.

Terry Collins and Sandy Alderson have shown no interest in developing for the future, in spite of draft picks, etc. I am limiting this to the 2017 Mets. They want something to give ownership now.

This comes down to specifically playing Conforto THROUGH slumps; something that a player really needs from his manager.

Conforto has had a tough deal with this lack of confidence.

Consider the "surprise" that Terry Collins said he had over the All Star appearance.

Terry Collins is alone in his surprise. Conforto was voted in BY HIS PEERS.

I say this because it gives an appearance of counter-production from the Mets' leadership in not playing this kid and now they are "forced" into playing him.

I continue to assert that the arse kissing of vets has troubled us and Conforto should have been given the "luxury" of the psychological stance that says:

"The spot in the line up is yours to lose" in 2017.

He was not. He deserved this status and earned it. Did we need him hitting .400 in Vegas?

He was a "part time" All Star for us. If playing 36 year old Grandy, no matter how great a guy is, over 24 year old natural slugger Conforto, made sense, I will identify as Santa Claus.

yours truly,


Peter Hyatt said...


my understanding is Nimmo is fine.

Why are we not discovering what he may be capable of doing is an important question.


Thomas Brennan said...

On a totally separate subject, the Mets' 4.87 ERA is about 5th worst in baseball.

But what really caught my attention is that 7 teams' staffs have recorded more than a strikeout per inning! When I was a kid in the 1960s, only Koufax, MacDowell and Raddatz had more than a K per inning for multiple years, as I recall. Now entire teams do it.

The Mets and several other teams are not that far from a K per inning either.

Anonymous said...

You boosted Guillorme, but he's not listed in your top prospects rankings. Reason?

Thomas Brennan said...

Peter, my understanding is that Nimmo is still on DL and is not playing rehab games, so to me it is unclear when he will return. He probably is fine, but being evaluated to make sure this partial lung collapse thing is unlikely to suddenly recur in a much more serious way.

I know Lagares had surgery June 19, so my guess for him is another 3 weeks, but that is an uninformed guess.

Heck, if they do trade Bruce and Grandy and someone else gets hurt, Hobie may get to see Victor Cruzado called up!

Adam Smith said...

I wonder if Alderson expects to be back next season. His contract is up, I believe. That also makes me wonder whether he'll over-focus on guys "close" to making the bigs, rather than looking to get back more talented but younger prospects. Mack, I don't know if this team has "bigger fish to fry" than Cespedes, but there's no bigger dog on the team (and I don't mean that in the positive alpha-dog sense. It's just that they are stuck with him and that contract, so why even bother fantasizing about it. If he became a FA after this season, I seriously doubt he'd be offered superstar money, or even a multi-year deal anywhere. I think that TJ Rivera as a 3B is a fool's errand. The kid can passably play 2B, but for a 3B with limited power, crappy defense and a weak arm, he's a stopgap, not a first division starter. Also, I wonder if they'll go into next season with both he and Flores on the roster. They are somewhat different players, but they seem redundant, and neither can play SS.

Mack Ade said...

Anonymous -

Hmmm... a mistake I will correct now

Mack Ade said...

Peter - Tom:

No one wants to play baseball more than Nimmo, but he seems to be a slow healer on all his ijuries (as most other Mets seem to be also).

As for Lagares, I have no idea.

Viper said...

I too would like to see an infield of Guillorme and Rosario up the middle and Lagares at CF. That would be great to see.

We need a good Flexen to make us forget about the failures of Montero (who has pitched better of late) and Wheeler who seems lost. Maybe he just hit the wall on his first year back?

Both Flores and TJ are similar players. They can both hit but are both exposed at 3B. Their best position would be 1B but can probably play an average 2B. Mets brass are now saying that TJ is the 3B of the future translate to me as "we have no intention" of paying big money for a true 3B.

Question Mack,

Do you see a future ML catcher in Plawecki? the reason I ask is that if memory serves me right, he came up to the majors from AA. As such, he probably needed more seasoning at Vegas which he now has. Does he now merit another extended look? Is not like d'Arnaud is doing anything to deserve being the starter.

Thomas Brennan said...

Viper, Mack can address your question on Plawecki, but I do an article on our "catching community" (majors and minors) tomorrow at 8 AM.

Mack Ade said...

Viper -

Re Plawecki... no I do not. Offensively or defensively.

Eddie Corona said...

Mack You spoke of the Latin guys in king-port and the DSL... I love prospect talk... maybe you can highlight those you like or hear are promising in another piece?

Thomas Brennan said...

Eddie, that sounds like a good idea in a few weeks, to get deeper into each league's season.

bob gregory said...

Now Wheeler is back on the DL??

Is it safe yo say yet, that Alderson's plan to bet the team's future on Power pitchers has proven disastrous?

Mack Ade said...

Eddie -

I will let Tom pick up the Latin baton at the end of the month.

Robb said...

Nimmo had/has a collapsed lung. While untreated that would be serious. But treated for you and i it wouldnt be that big a deal. Im not sure how long it is before you can run a sprinters speed after something like that. If i were everyone involved id take it slowly. I say that but im positive nimmo would kill to be playing.

Jose said...


Rosario and Guillorme mediocre offensive? I'm not sure.

If they can put same numbers they have right now in MLB level, they will be TOP 15 in some offensive categories.

Right now - SS Top 15:
AVG > .262 .330 .285
OBP > .314 .368 .365
SLG > .415 .473 .332
OPS > .736 .841 .697
HITS > 82 120 97
2B > 16 17 16
3B > 1 7 0
HR > 9 7 0
BB > 21 21 42
Runs > 40 59 44
Rbis > 35 53 24

it's true that Guillorme has to improve a lot in the 3B and HR column, but in general they rank easily in the middle of the table.

Thomas Brennan said...

I think Rosario will have a fine bat. Guillorme may not even be Tejada offensively though

Reese Kaplan said...

Nimmo just played his first rehab game, went 0-4 with two strikeouts. I'm guessing they're monitoring his energy level more than anything else given the nature of his injury.

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