2017 Winter Leagues | Final Report on Arizona Fall League



RHP Mickey Jannis: 1-3, 2.33 ERA, 8.0 K/9, 1.7 BB/9, .223 Average Against
  • After a strong 2nd half of 2017 with the (AA) Binghamton Rumble Ponies, Jannis followed it up with an equally strong performance for the Scottsdale Scorpions. Among SPs , Jannis led the team in Ks, ERA, and fewest HR allowed (0). In the entire Arizona League, only top prospects Max Fried (Atlanta) and Mitch Keller (Pittsburgh) outperformed Jannis in terms of ERA. Even with so many arms already on the Mets 40 man roster, Jannis has certainly made a strong case to be added himself. It will be interesting to see if the Mets oblige or if they will allow him to be exposed to the Rule 5 draft. A potential selection by a rebuilding team with limited rotation assets such as the Padres, Marlins, Reds, Phillies, or Tigers seems extremely likely.
RHP Matt Pobereyko: 0-0, 0.00 ERA, 10.0 K/9, 0.8 BB/9, .175 Average Against
  • Pobereyko continues the string of Independent RPs signed by the Mets to fill out minor league roster space......who actually seem like legitimate future MLB candidates. After K'ing a staggering 38 out of 67 batters (57%) in the Frontier League, the Mets signed Pobereyko to fill up roster space in Columbia where he continued his prodigious K rate with 37% of Batters Faced seeing strike #3. Since he still doesn't have a significant track record in the MiLB, and isn't eligible for the Rule 5 draft, Pobereyko is not likely to be added to the 40 man roster. However, his strong performance in the Arizona Fall League gives a TON of support to the idea of skipping him over Port St. Lucie and sending him straight to (AA) Binghamton for the 2018 season.
RHP Tim Peterson: 1-0, 0.87 ERA, 5.2 K/9, 1.7 BB/9, .171 Average Against
  • The only one in the group that was drafted, Peterson seemed to have hit the prospect wall in 2014 after struggling in (A+) Port St. Lucie and (AA) Binghamton and then again in AA in 2016. Peterson eventually figured it out his 3rd time though as he posted a very strong 1.14 ERA and then followed it up with this strong performance in the Arizona Fall League. That said, his lack of experience in AAA and the lack of K's in the AFL is a bit concerning as it opens the possibility of him being subject to the unforgiving BABIP gods. This probably keeps him from getting added to the 40 man roster AND from being selected in the Rule 5 draft, but, it does at least get him on the Mets depth chart radar as he is expected to open 2018 in (AAA) Las Vegas.
LHP Kyle Regnault: 0-1, 0.71 ERA, 12.1 K/9, 2.1 BB/9, .196 Average Against
  • Not everyone takes the simple path to the MLB. For Regnault, a solid showing across 3 years in the Canadian-American independent league led to him signing with the Mets in 2015 and he has dominated at every level since. His solid showing in AA and AAA during 2017 followed up by this superb showing in the Arizona Fall League against some the best young talent the MLB has to offer has put Regnault in line for an addition to the 40 man roster. The only thing working against Regnault is the fact that A) He's not yet eligible for the Rule 5 draft so there is no pressure to protect him, and B) statistically speaking, he is actually better vs RHB instead of LHB making him ill suited to claim the 2nd LOOGY role in the MLB bullpen.


C Tomas Nido: .184 AVG, .577 OPS, 1 HR, 7 RBI, 24.1% K Rate, 9.3% BB rate
  • Even though the Scottsdale Scorpions finished as the worst team in the Arizona Fall League, it was certainly of no fault of any of the Mets players. At least, except for the performance of Tomas Nido who was the only one of the eight to not play well which was disappointing considering his poor performance in (AA) Binghamton as well. Outside of a strong month of May, Nido's entire 2017 season, combined with Plawecki's resurgence, really hurts his chances at becoming a future contributor to the MLB club. He will still be pushed up to AAA, due to Mazieka's strong season in (A+) Port St. Lucie, but Nido's position on the 40 man roster could be in jeopardy if he doesn't bounceback in 2018. 
LF Kevin Kaczmarski: .351 AVG, .834 OPS, 1 HR, 11 RBI, 2 SB, 24.3% K Rate, 6.1% BB rate
  • Kaczmarski continued to show the skills that made him a 9th round pick in the 2015 draft and that he has displayed at every MiLB stop in his career. With excellent bat to ball skills, sneaky solid speed, and solid defense in the OF, Kaczmarski has a very solid chance to reach the MLB in at least a 4th OF role. His performance in the Arizona Fall League re-enforced that floor prediction as he finished 6th in the league in AVG and tied for 4th in total # of hits with MLB top prospect Ronald Acuna. Luckily, Kaczmarski is not yet eligible for the Rule 5 draft so do not expect him to be added to the 40 man roster today. That plus his lack of power will likely prevent him from getting a full time job in the MLB unless he can display a constant ability to play CF well which could happen in (AAA) Las Vegas during 2018.
2B/SS Luis Guillorme: .289 AVG, .689 OPS, 0 HR, 3 RBI, 2.1% K Rate, 6.3% BB rate
  • Is Guillorme a legitimate prospect? Depending on who you ask the answer could be very different. Guillorme has clearly proven that, unlike Rey Ordonez who he is often compared to, he can put the bat on the ball. Guillorme also has a little bit of gap to gap power and possesses a K rate that is usually below 10% every year. In fact, during this AFL season, he only registered 1! K in his 48 Plate Appearances. Guillorme IS eligible for the Rule 5 draft and due to a lack of hitters on the 40 man roster he is certainly a lock to be protected today. Whether he gets his chance at the MLB or not probably depends on his performance this season in (AAA) Las Vegas. 
3B David Thompson: .328 AVG, .940 OPS, 1 HR, 5 RBI, 17.7% K Rate, 6.5% BB rate
  • The former 4th round pick in the 2015 draft has been sneakily solid at every MiLB stop in his career. With the Mets struggles to produce a successor to David Wright, Thompson's strong showing in the AFL could give the front office some confidence that he could be that guy. While he didn't show much power in Arizona, Thompson did produce 16 HRs and 46 total extra base hit in (AA) Binghamton this past season with a superb 17.4% K rate which is in line to what he produced in the AFL. Just like Kaczmarski, college players from the 2015 draft have one more season to go before they are eligible for the Rule 5 draft so Thompson will unlikely be added to the 40 man roster today. That said, he will likely head to the (AAA) Las Vegas team to be a part of what seems like is going to be a fun to watch hitting lineup.


Tom Brennan said...

Great, great synopsis.

So many obstacles to guys getting to the bigs - hope Regnault makes it in 2018 after his terrific 2017.

Hobie said...

Thank you for that thoughtful analysis.

I have some fear that T.Peterson might get snapped up if not protected, however.

We should know in a few hours whom the Mets protect. My choices: Guillorme, Jannis, Bashlor, Uceta & Peterson.

Christopher Soto said...

My expectation is

SS Luis Guillorme
RHP Gerson Bautista
RHP Adonis Uceta
RHP Corey Oswalt
RHP Mickey Jannis

Although I would not be surprised if Oswalt or Bautista were left off in favor of Jeff McNeil

Tom Brennan said...

Chris, we need a good article on how the 40 man draft works - for instance, if a guy gets drafted, can they protect another guy not on the 40 man then?

I think Mc'Neil won't be on it - I think they will protect pitching - but I would hate to see him go. If he stays healthy, I think he could be a great utility major leaguer by mid-2018.

We also need to focus on who the stocked teams, like Yanks, are unable to protect - it might be a time for the Mets to upgrade.

I wonder if someone will pick Jayce Boyd - a team with a DH might find a guy who hit as well as he did late in the season to be attractive.

Lastly, I'd like to see international guys signed at age 16 be held in servitude for another year - a lot of times it takes guys signed at age 16 four seasons to start to get traction.

Tom Brennan said...

Yanks just traded a pitcher for 2 younger prospects to help with their 40 man - I wonder if the Mets could similarly trade Jannis? Or one of the many relievers like Peterson who might warrant a spot on the 40 man?

LongTimeFan1 said...

Good summary, Chris.

A couple points to expand on your comments.

On Nido, I believe his poor offense isn't talent deficit, but bad habits in his mechanics especially with his hands taking too long to load. These need to be fixed and I believe will. New manager and new hitting coach in AAA will provide fresh eyes. He's too good defensively not to fix the bat and grow into long term big league starter. I don't see the Mets giving up on him if still struggles in 2018 and I don't think Plawecki has proven anything thus far to block him and his exceptional defensive skills.

Regarding Thompson, he only hit one homer in AFL, but otherwise hit for extra bases. A .940 OPS makes a statement.

Christopher Soto said...


I usually produce a Rule 5 draft Primer closer to the date when it happens (Mid December)

As for how it works.....i think you are mistaken.

Players who have been with their organizations for 5 or 6 years (Depending on their age when they first signed) but HAVE NOT been added to the MLB 40 man roster are eligible for the Rule 5 draft.

If a team selects a player.....they must keep that player on the 25 man active roster for a majority of the season. If they fail to....the player needs to be sent back to the original club. If a player is injured during his Rule 5 season.....then the roster restrictions transfer to the next calendar year. (So no hiding Rule 5 selections on the DL)

Christopher Soto said...


I certainly dont feel that Nido is talent deficit.....my comments on his roster spot being at risk has more to do with Mazeika's development and performance nipping at Nido's heels than it has to do with Nido's poor 2017. I've got Mazeika as one of my 2018 breakout candidates.

As for Thompson......I 100% acknowledge that the dude has some legit power.....I probably should have indicating in this article that he actually led the AFL in doubles hit this season. 46 extra base hits in 130 AA games though is LEGIT!

Mack Ade said...

I hate it when Soto posts. They always are so uninformative. (sic)

David Rubin said...

Chris- you are absolutely right. It costs $100,000 to select the player and you get $50,000 back if you send them back to the originating team if you do not want to carry them on your 25 man roster for the entire season.

David Rubin said...

Christopher- great recaps!!
A scout I speak with regularly who is based out of Arizona thinks that Thompson has the ability both at bat and in the field to be a starting third baseman at some point in the near future. He said that besides being a solid run driving machine he has worked very hard on his defense and has made great improvements despite not being blessed with a ton of natural talent at the position. He also thinks the whole Dom Smith debate is insane and that almost every club would be lining up to add his bat and defense to their roster should the Mets give up on him - which he said he doubts will happen and that any publicity over this by Sandy was his merely making a public example of him to get him to get into shape. He also noted that the team had him change his swing to the uppercut variety which resulted in more homeruns but changed his natural talent which is getting hits and getting on base.

Tom Brennan said...

David, nice insights.

LongTimeFan1 said...


Regarding Mazieka, I view him as Josh Thole #2, slap hitter mechanics which won't fair well in majors especially in today's data rich environment and great opposition research. Even in St. Lucie the league caught up to him preventing any additional homers, stuck on 7, never hit another after June 20th.

And after that till his AA promotion, he hit .261/.382/.326/.708, just 6 XBH, all doubles in 165 PA's. He's not going to draw many walks in the majors if he can't demonstrate capacity to overcome the edge big league pitchers will have exploiting that very limiting swing path.

Because of that swing, I think he'll have difficult time making hard contact especially on pitches in. I think he needs to change those mechanics especially that he currently lacks a carrying tool on defense and foot speed. 2018 in AA would be the time to work on those mechanics and improve defensively if he's going to advance to AAA and reach the majors in two years.

I think we agree on Thompson that he has power even though he hit just one AZ Fall League homer yet finished at the top in doubles and with rather robust OPS.

LongTimeFan1 said...

Actually, Chris, correction.

Mazieka hit .261/.381/.306/.687 for St. Lucie after June 20th.

And only had one homer for remainder of season after May 21st.

From May 22nd till his AA promotion,he hit .251/.364/.302/.666 with 8 doubles and 1 homer in 253 PA's, 62 games.

Tom Brennan said...

Hi Chris. My thoughts are if an int'l kid signs at 16, teams should control for 7 years. Then, they are free to go elsewhere at age 23, as they start season 8. Why? Because it takes a lot of these kids their age 16 and 17 years in DSL before being ready at 18 for stateside rookie ball.

Long Time, great observations on Mazeika. Adapt or not advance.

Christopher Soto said...


Im 100% in agreement with you.....most of this Rule 5 draft situations end up involving these signed at 16 year old kids who are still only 22 years old when they reach Rule 5 eligibility vs 18 yr old high school kids who are 23 yrs old and college players who are generally 26-28 years old.

I definetely think an additional bracket should be added

7 years from signing season if signed at age 16 or 17. (Rule 5 eligible age 23 minimum, 24 max)
6 years from signing season if signed between age 18 or 19. (Rule 5 eligible age 24 min, 25 max)
5 years from signing season if signed after age 20. (Rule 5 eligible age 25 min)

Unknown said...

The comments about Peterson's stats in 2014 with Binghampton are not really fair since he pitched in one game in which he was a fill in starter and travelled all day to get there. In 2016 he was having a good year in AA but struggled the last 2 weeks of the season (Went from 3.22 to 4.09 ERA. He also has struck out 108 in 99.2 IP in AA.

Tom Brennan said...

William Peterson, after Tim's great 2017 season, hopefully he is pitching in the Big leagues in 2018. As Paul Sewald showed this year, cream rises to the top. I hope Tim's 2018 mirrors Sewald's 2017.

Unknown said...

Thank you Thomas for the comments. Tim is focusing on getting his velocity up in 2018. I love your blog and try to read it every day.

Tom Brennan said...

William, we appreciate that, and all the best to Tim. Velocity increase in 2018 would be a real plus to what has to already be a strong arsenal.

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