Mike Freire - What Do We Have Here? (Amed Rosario)


It is always a bit of a "crap shoot" when you elevate a prospect from the minor leagues and immediately put them in a prominent role on the field.  Regardless of how well a young players has played in the minor leagues, it does not always translate to success under the bright lights of MLB (Rafael Montero, Chris Flexen and Corey Oswalt are recent examples).

Further complicating the issue is a divergent set of beliefs about prospect development.

Once school of thought is that promoting a player too early and having the struggle will "ruin" their career due to a loss of confidence. The other school of thought believes that the only way to learn how to swim is to get thrown in the deep end, struggles be damned.  I fall somewhere in the middle, in that I think learning how to deal with adversity is important, since most of the "hot shot" prospects have likely not had to do that too much as the "best player" on their respective teams while they were growing up, etc.  However, too much failure can also cause permanent damage in the long run, which is why picking young players and developing them for future success is so difficult.

With all of that said, I would like to focus on one of the Mets' youngsters (Amed Rosario), who is off to a rough start in his young career.

AR was signed in July of 2012 as a16 year old amateur free agent, which also included a very large signing bonus.  Even though he wasn't drafted in the traditional way, his signing bonus put him in the same league as an early round draftee, heightened expectations included.  He proceeded to work his way through the minor league system while exhibiting the tools that led to his acquisition. Some even referred to him as the second coming of Cleveland Indians short stop Francisco Lindor, which may or may not be fair (more in a moment).

AR arrived in New York for a 43 game trial towards the end of the 2017 season as a well hyped 21 year old.  After posting underwhelming numbers in that series of
games, he was installed as regular short stop for the parent club at the start of this season.  So, you may be asking how is he doing?  Between the 2017 and 2018
seasons, AR has compiled 450 plate appearances, which is roughly three quarters of one season and he has produced the following combined statistics;

.241/.277/.366  (.643 OPS)

8 HR/31 RBI/11 SB and 45 R

-0.7 WAR and -0.4 dWAR (13 Errors)

18 Walks and 109 Strikeouts!

If you extrapolate the "counting statistics" over the course of a full season, he would produce the following;

11 HR/41 RBI/15 SB and 60 R

24 Walks and 145 Strikeouts!!

Take the numbers with a grain of salt, since it is a small sample size and he hasn't even finished his first full season yet.  However, what is concerning is that he is
producing BELOW a replacement level player and he is a strikeout machine with poor plate discipline.  The counting statistics are not horrible for his position, but he
isn't producing so well that you can ignore the negative factors and his surprisingly negative defensive statistics.

I am not suggesting that it is time to move on and since the season is basically a dumpster fire and what do you have to lose running him out there everyday?  He will either sink or swim so you may as well find out now, instead of later when the team is prepared to contend or you have dealt off other prospects thinking the position was secure.   

I think it is fair to say that AR has moved from "the future" to "questionable" and he shouldn't get too comfortable with the players that are behind him in the pipeline.

Lastly, take a look at Francisco Lindor's first full year in the major leagues (2015) which was his age 21 season and it ironically consisted of 438 plate appearances, listed below;

.313/.353/.482  (.835 OPS)

12 HR/51 RBI/12 SB and 50 R

3.5 WAR and 1.7 dWAR (only 10 Errors)

27 Walks and 69 Strikeouts

Not even close to what AR has put together at a similar age and in a similar number of plate appearances!

FL has clearly developed into a beast, as he has produced over 21 WAR in his three and half seasons, to include over 5 WAR this year alone!  I think the AR/FL comparison is a bit unfair, but FL did "blossom" in his second and subsequent seasons so let's hope AR does something similar.


Thomas Brennan said...

They say that success begets success, so maybe Rosario going 5 for 7 plus a walk in the last 2 games is the beginning of a legitimate step up, and not just a momentary blip.

It is also amazing that he has walked 8 times in his last 35 plate appearances, after just 8 in his prior 260 plate appearances. Maybe, just maybe, there is a big change underway.

Gary Seagren said...

Does it have something to do with the fact AR not FL is a Met? Kidding aside I found it interesting last weekend when I had to watch the Rays series with their feed because I'm blacked out living in southwest Florida that during their games they cover their minor league system. We have TWO HOURS before Met games on SNY that's mostly Met coverage and they barely mention the minor leagues. Anyway does this remind anyone of July 2015 when Campbell and Mayberry Jr. we're in the middle of the lineup though I really don't see the same ending in our future. Nice Nimmo moment last night ....way to go kid.

Thomas Brennan said...

Nimmo Nice!

I figured out Jake's problem - he needs to grow the hair back if he wants to win.

Reese Kaplan said...

True, but he pithes better with it cut short

Hobie said...

I think Didi Gregorios is a better comparison than Lindor (or Correa, if that was what you were hoping for).

Didi's 600+ AB's in AZ yielded a .241/.295/.368(.663) slash at ages 23 & 24. I'm looking for Ahmed to become what Didi has. With Giminez & Mauricio in the wings (I see the former at 3B & the latter in CF, BTW), I'm with Mack looking to 2020...hope I'm still around.

Thomas Brennan said...

Reese, would you rather have a long-haired guy with a 16-2, 3.50 record after 20 starts, or a 1.67 guy with short hair who is 5-4?

It is all due to the haircut!

Thomas Brennan said...

Hobie, we'll still all be here when the Youth Cavalry rides in to save the Mets' day in 2020 and 2021! I also imagine Jose Reyes will still be here, too :)

Mack's Mets © 2012