Mack’s Apples – Luis Guillorme, Adrian Gonzalez, LSU Prospects, Travis Swaggerty, Ronald Acuna


Fangraphs   Top 18 Mets Prospects -

Pic by Ed Delany
         9. Luis Guillorme UT

        Drafted: 10th Round, 2013 from Coral Springs Charter (FL)

        Age   22       Height           5’9      Weight          199     

         Bat/Throw   L/R

Tool Grades (Present/Future)

          Hit             Raw Power Game    Power           Run    Fielding        Throw
        45/55                    45/45              20/20            45/45      70/70           60/60

Guillorme is one of the more remarkable prospects to watch in all of baseball. He’s got a catcherly build at 5-foot-9 and is often the most unathletic-looking player on the field. Then Guillorme’s hands start to get involved in the game, and you realize you might be watching the person who is more gifted at this one specific aspect of baseball than anyone else on the planet. His hands and actions seem supernatural, and Guillorme convert oddly struck ground balls — ones that most shortstops would just eat — into outs.

His offensive approach is driven by an almost pathological need to hit the ball the other way. He has among the best hand-eye coordination and bat control in the minors, which has made him difficult to strike out and allowed him to walk more than is typical for hitters with zero game power (72 walks, 55 strikeouts at Double-A last year), as Guillorme seeks to slap contact toward third base and back up the middle almost exclusively. He’s a unique expression of baseball and is going to be a good utility man for a very long time.

Four players     who will not return in 2019 –

   Adrian Gonzalez - Beginning with one of the more obvious decisions, it’s not likely the Mets keep first baseman Adrian Gonzalez around for long. He’s a piece of a scotch top you put on a leaking faucet until you can sort through the junk drawer for a real solution. Or maybe he’s a bit better, but not a real solution.

Thankfully, they have two notable first base prospects in the minor leagues nearing a stay in MLB. Dominic Smith and Peter Alonso have a chance to do terrific things at the MLB level. Before they can, the Mets need to part ways with Gonzalez.
Gonzalez’s age is the biggest reason why the Mets will move on from him. Even if he produces well for them in 2018, he’s at best trying out for a DH job in 2019. I can see him sticking around for another year in the American League in a limited role. For the Mets, this means a one-and-done season.

      After losing top picks Alex Lange, Greg Deichmann, and Jared Poche’ to the draft and RHP Eric Walker to TJ, LSU might not be the dominant team prepared for a deep run into the CWS it was a year ago, and if they lose their pair of draft-eligible sophomore standouts in the draft this year, the situation could leak into next year. The big name is standout power pitcher Zack Hess, whose fastball sits mid-90s and is paired with a devastating wipeout slider, but he’s already turned down the MLB once (drafted by the Yankees out of HS in the 35th round) and is in his first year of pitching out of LSU’s rotation rather than the bullpen role he was relegated to last year. Unless drafted very highly, he’s probably not going anywhere; Baseball America ranked him #44 on their preseason college prospect rankings. The same might not be true of draft-eligible sophomore center fielder Zach Watson, who brings a combination of power and speed to the top of the Tigers’ lineup. Baseball America had Watson as #23 on their list. Junior OF Antoine Duplantis also appeared on BA’s preseason college prospect rankings; he’s been a steady offensive force over his three years at LSU, and possesses the cerebral, analytics-influenced approach to his game the Mariners prize in prospects.

2018 MLB Draft: 

Travis Swaggerty , OF, University of South Alabama –
           In 2018, Swaggerty is hitting .312/.481/.580 with 10 homers, six steals in 10 attempts, 40 walks and 25 strikeouts in 138 at-bats.

Swaggerty is listed at 5-11, 180, a left-handed hitter and thrower born August 19, 1997. He’s at least a 60-runner with some 70-grades and also has an effective 55-60 arm that works in center field. When he’s right he shows impressive knowledge of the strike zone and works his way on base, making him a potent leadoff force.

He didn’t have much power three years ago but that started to change in the spring of ‘17 and has continued this year, his isolated power numbers rising from .119 as a freshman to .206 as a sophomore to .273 this year.

Braves are reportedly promoting Ronald Acuna  the top prospect in baseball

Because Acuna wasn't on the 40-man roster, he wasn't subjected to the rules that state an optioned player will receive credit for the interim service time if his assignment lasts fewer than 20 days. Hence his promotion. Acuna could still qualify for Super Two status, meaning he'll net an additional year of arbitration. But that was never the Braves' aim. 

To be clear, the Braves aren't special in this regard. Almost every team is playing the same game. The exceptions are limited to, what, the Miami Marlins and Lewis Brinson; the Los Angeles Angels and Shohei Ohtani; and the Philadelphia Phillies and Scott Kingery? And Ohtani and Kingery are special cases, with the latter ensuring he'd head north with the club by signing a long-term extension. This is, for better or worse, just how baseball works in 2018.


Thomas Brennan said...

Luis and Dom Smith are not hitting that well yet in AAA in 2018.

For you legions of Tim Tebow haters, Tim is hitting .250 in AA in his second season. Smith and Luis are in their 6th seasons and are hitting .246 and .231, respectively. HMMM...

Braves have Albie and now Acuna - both are A players. Look out.

That LSU pitcher might be great for round 2 - I definitely want a power bat in one of the first two rounds, though.

Reese Kaplan said...

Am I misreading something here? Gullorme is at the top of the scale for both raw power and game power? Methinks someone is mistaken.

Reese Kaplan said...

Also, the little guy doesn't run all that well either.

Thomas Brennan said...

I think it is criminal that Flores is not playing more at 1B. Maybe it is because Gonzo's back would stiffen up on the bench? Flores' bat should be in the line up much more.

LongTimeFan1 said...

Reese -

You're absolutely misreading on Guillorme. I don't know what makes you think otherwise.

LongTimeFan1 said...

Thomas -

I think several players should be in the lineup more including Nimmo and Lagares. That Nimmo is rotting on the bench when he's right up there as Mets best hitter and with rather high exit velocity, and good speed - drives me crazy. His talent is being wasted.

I like Flores's bat better than Gonzalez's, but Flores's D is sore spot. Though first base is his best position, he's still liability. Gonzalez has great hands, is multiple gold glove recipient. With Flores, you never know when he's going to muff a scoop that should be made.

Flores's base running is also liability.

Thomas Brennan said...

But Flores kills Gonzalez in a footrace. Speedy Gonzalez he is not.

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