Tom Brennan - An Updated Peek At Mets Minors Catchers


Tom Brennan 
An Updated Peek At Mets Minors Catchers

I read ERICA LAY'S fine inaugural Macks Mets article from on catcher Devin Mesoraco, and it left me with some observations and thoughts:

1) Welcome aboard, Erica, and I am looking forward to many more such fine articles.

2) Why the heck don't more capable and fanatical and/or analytical Met fans out there write for this site?  It's fun.

3) What catching answers in the minors might there be?

After seeing Nido and Lobaton in Queens lately, we know one thing more clearly than we did before...we want catchers who come up to at least hit their weight, which in a way means we hope our catchers weigh 250 or more.

In the pinch we had after our 2 opening day catchers got hurt virtually simultaneously, we realized the catcher call-up cupboard was bare.  

But does that mean there is no catcher hope down under?

In a word, no...there is indeed hope.

Catchers in AAA?  

Messrs. Monell and Plaia: old &/or can't hit.  Let's move on.

Tomas Nido?  Get another 400 AAA at bats so we can get a better idea if you were just rushed recently - or if you'll be a career-long flirt...as in flirting with the Mendoza line as a rule, rather than an exception.  No .200 +, no thanks.

In AA?

Pat Mazeika CAN HIT...although perhaps not in sub-ZERO weather, as he went just 2 for 28 in his first 8 frigid games this season.  

After that, when he could finally feel his fingers and toes, and no frostbite was detected by the medical team, the real Patrick Mazeika showed up:

In his next 67 at bats, he compiled 21 hits, including 3 doubles and 6 bombs.  

I think his lefty bat will "catch on" at Citifield by 2019 - and he'll hit up here in Queens.  It would be nice to have a lefty and righty hitting tandem, too.

Let's move on to St Lucie.  

One interesting catcher, but listed as DH: Anthony Dimino.  

Heck, he is hitting .319 in his short career, with a .408 on base % and 27 of 37 steals in 543 career at bats.  Nice.

Anthony started in uncharacteristically slow fashion with the stick in 2018, hitting just .213 on May 4.  

In the next 4 games, though, he went on a tear - 9 for 15 with 2 walks.  He is not a HR hitter, but this 28th round dude can get sure on base - and hit!  

Dimino's catching, though, is a clear work in progress.  

In 68 games catching in his career, he has THIRTY PASSED BALLS, and thrown out just 24 of 112 thieves.  No surprise that he is listed as a DH - maybe his future is as a utility player and who could be a 3rd catcher in a pinch.

He has nearly 50 other games in total at 1st, 2nd, 3rd, & in the OF, much more adept defensively than behind the dish.

Looking good in Full A?

There is much promise from Scott Manea & Ali Sanchez

Manea, whom I profiled on Sunday, is having a fabulous season (.485 on base %, 11 of 17 caught stealing).  Look on the right sidebar to read that article - this guy may sneak up on us as a future Mets catcher.

Frankly, with another few weeks at this pace, I think he could be promoted to St Lucie.

Sanchez, perpetually injured, has had only 700 at bats in his first 4 minors seasons through 2017...but is still only 21.  

Injured again to start the 2018 season, Ali heated up in 5 games ending May 12, going 9 for 21 with a rare Sanchez homer, plus 2 walks.  

It boosted him to .270/.329/.413 after 17 games. His slugging % prior to 2018 was around .300.

Ali has a history of gunning down around half of the fools who try to steal on him (118 of 250, to be precise).

At 6'1" and close to 200, Sanchez has the size to add power, and he has a low K rate.  

My requests? 400 or more healthy at bats in 2018 to really start to show what Ali Sanchez can do.  And more power.

Having said all of the above, should we draft a catcher with one of our high picks this year?  

My objective take is yes, and preferably draft one in the top 3 rounds with real promise. One can never have too many viable candidates for such an injury-prone position.

If you catch my drift.  

Good, you're catching on.


Reese Kaplan said...

In the cases of Maeika, Dimino and Manea it's possible that some of Sandy's draft choices haven't "caught" the same bug as most of them.

Mike Freire said...

I think you keep trying until you get it right.......the prospects look solid, but so did Nido when he was in St Lucie.

If the Mets can get an established player for 2019, you have to try.

Maybe our newest edition will "catch on" and solve our issues for a couple years until one of the kids makes it?

Thomas Brennan said...

Nido just hit well one year. Mazeika seems a much better hitter.

LongTimeFan1 said...

Seems to me Patrick Mazeika's selling out for homers. Batting .240 despite being lifetime .300+

If he still has slap in his swing, he'll be very vulnerable to big league pitching. I'm looking for video of his 3 homers in his last 4 games.

LongTimeFan1 said...

Mazeika sold out for homers early last season as well. Then didn't hit another for the remainder since June.

Mack Ade said...

Mets need to seriouly consider picking Joey Bart with #6.

If not, go catcher in round 2.

Thomas Brennan said...

He started out 2 for 28 in wintry weather, great since. I Say give Mazeika time to show this year is his year.

Thomas Brennan said...

If Bart is that good, do it. Pick him. Keep drafting power bats too. We are 28th in scoring again...come on!

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