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Track Record: When international scouting director Chris Becerra left the Mets to join the Red Sox after the 2018 season, he left the organization stocked with high-upside shortstops. Gimenez succeeded Amed Rosario as the system's No. 1 prospect, and Ronny Mauricio has a chance to succeed Gimenez in a year or two. Gimenez ranked as the No. 2 prospect in the 2015 international signing class and three years later had reached Double-A Binghamton as a teenager. He accelerated his timetable in 2018 by taming the pitcher-friendly high Class A Florida State League and moving to the Eastern League in late July. All told, Gimenez set career highs with six home runs, 29 doubles and 38 stolen bases. Scouts regarded him as one of the top talents in both the Florida State and Eastern leagues, and at the Futures Game he struck a 106.5 mph ground ball--albeit for a double play--that was hit harder than all but five other fair balls at the exhibition. Scouting Report: Gimenez is proof positive that looks can be deceiving. His lean physique, baby face and smaller stature belie a quick-twitch athlete with well-rounded skills, a high baseball IQ and leadership qualities. Elite contact ability and a quick, loose lefthanded swing give him above-average--and possibly plus--hitting potential. A discerning batting eye will keep his walk rate and on-base percentage high. While Gimenez shows merely gap power now, he generates impressive torque with his hips, and as his body matures he will hit for average home run totals. He is an average runner who reads pitchers well and uses his knowledge of game situations to steal bases. Scouts project Gimenez as a plus defender at shortstop with a plus, accurate arm. A quick first step, sure hands and quick exchange from glove to hand make him a reliable defender. Intense focus and a strong work ethic tie the whole package together on both sides of the ball. The Future: Gimenez has the ceiling of first-division shortstop, but the presence of Rosario in New York might push him to second base, a position he played sporadically until starting there the majority of the time in the 2018 Arizona Fall League. Gimenez should reach Triple-A Syracuse in 2019 and could receive a late-season callup with an eye toward regular big league work in 2020.
Track Record: Alonso led the minors with 36 home runs and 119 RBIs in a 2018 season split between Double-A Binghamton and Triple-A Las Vegas, but his signature moments stand out more than raw totals. At the Futures Game he clobbered a homer that sailed over the left-field foul pole at 113.6 mph, an uncharted exit velocity for a ball hit so high. Then in the Arizona Fall League he turned around a 103 mph fastball from Blue Jays prospect Nate Pearson for a homer to center field. No major leaguer has homered on a pitch that fast in four years of Statcast data. Scouting Report: Alonso is a polarizing prospect for scouts because his strengths and weaknesses are so pronounced. He makes the ball disappear in a hurry when he catches it with 70-grade raw power and elite exit velocities. Alonso's disciplined plate approach helps him draw walks and wait for pitches to slug, but more advanced pitchers have had success inducing him to expand his zone against breaking pitches. Despite being a bottom-of-the-scale runner, he should hit for a decent average because he hits the ball so hard. Defense is Alonso's bugaboo and has become his developmental focal point. Hard hands and limited mobility at first base turn some routine plays into adventures, but he scoops throws from infielders well. He must keep working to become even adequate defensively. The Future: Alonso is an American League player in a National League organization. Alonso's bat should create significantly more runs than his glove allows, and he will be big league ready early in 2019.
Track Record: The switch-hitting Mauricio wore down while showcasing for teams, but the Mets stuck with him and signed him for $2.1 million in 2017, when he ranked as the No. 3 prospect in his international signing class. He made his pro debut in the Rookie-level Gulf Coast League in 2018 and shined as the circuit's No. 2 prospect. He hit .322/.333/.510 before fading in August and then received a cameo in the Appalachian League. Scouting Report: Mauricio is uncommonly developed--physically and at the plate--for a player who played all season at 17. He grew two inches to 6-foot-4 after signing and filled out his once-skinny frame to profile as a future impact hitter. Mauricio has all the attributes to develop a plus bat with plus power. Both his hand speed and bat speed stand out on the Mets' internal metrics, and his timing and barrel frequency are impressive. Long limbs could make him susceptible to hard stuff up and in, and his aggressive approach could cut into his on-base ability. Mauricio has below-average speed out of the batter's box but he accelerates underway with long, gliding strides. His plus athleticism and 70-grade arm suit him at shortstop, where he compensates for average range with smooth actions and quick reads. The Future: Mauricio could jump to low Class A Columbia in 2019, along with the other high-end prospects from a loaded Rookie-level Kingsport team. His ability on both sides of the ball should make him a first-division regular, if not at shortstop then at third base.
Track Record: The youngest player in the 2017 draft, Vientos has spent two seasons in Rookie ball, but the time has not been spent idly. The high school shortstop shifted to third base in 2018 at Rookie-level Kingsport, while physical maturation has helped him develop his offensive game. Vientos ranked fourth in the Appalachian League with 11 home runs and third with 52 RBIs while drawing 37 walks against 43 strikeouts. Scouting Report: Vientos hits the ball hard consistently thanks to hand speed and bat speed that rank among the best in the system. His projectable frame should equate to further strength gains and power production. Vientos started slowly in the Appy League, hitting .230 through his first 25 games, which underscores how his timing at the plate can be disrupted. Because of this he might not be more than a fringe hitter, but his disciplined approach will prop up his on-base percentage. As any fielder new to third base, Vientos needs reps at third base to learn the footwork and associated angles at the hot corner, but his plus arm fits the prototype. The Future: Power production will be key to Vientos' future, and in that regard his early career has been a success. He profiles as a second-division regular or better as he embarks on full-season ball at low Class A Columbia in 2019.
Track Record: The 31st overall pick in 2016, Kay had Tommy John surgery after signing and missed the entirety of his first two pro seasons. He made up for lost time in 2018 by pitching at two Class A levels, striking out a batter per inning as he regained feel he lost after his layoff. Scouting Report: Kay returned to the hill in 2018 as a different pitcher than he was in college. More a fastball/changeup lefty at Connecticut, he emerged in pro ball with a vicious, top-to-bottom 80 mph curveball that he locates to both sides of the plate. His peak curveball approached 3,000 revolutions per minute, while his average spin rate ranked inside the top 10 percent in the minors. Kay tops out at 96 mph and sits 92-94 with an above-average, high-spin fastball that plays at the top of the zone in conjunction with his curve and mid-80s changeup at the bottom of the zone. His change flashes above-average potential and sinking action. Kay pitches with a bulldog demeanor and wants to strike out opponents. The Future: Kay has mid-rotation potential if he can refine his curveball into a swing-and-miss pitch and improve his overall command. He will be ready for Double-A at some point in 2019 with a possible big league ETA of 2020.
Track Record: Peterson shined as an Oregon junior in 2017 and went to the Mets 20th overall. His pro workload has been interrupted by an ingrown toenail in his debut and then a tweaked knee at the outset of 2018. He struck out 8.1 per nine innings at two Class A levels in his full-season debut, but more notable was his contact management. He allowed just two home runs in 22 starts to go with a groundball rate of nearly 65 percent that ranked third in the minors among minor league starters with at least 100 innings. Scouting Report: Peterson is a physical, 6-foot-6 lefthander with ample starter traits if not necessarily a huge ceiling. His fastball sits 89-91 mph and tops out 93 but looks a few ticks faster to batters because his elite extension boosts his effective velocity. His fastball runs to his arm side. Peterson's best pitch is a slurvy, swing-and-miss slider at 78-81 mph that he commands as a chase pitch against lefthanders, a back-foot equalizer against righthanders and as a get-me-over pitch for called strikes. The unique angles he creates from his height and three-quarters arm slot help him leverage the ball down in the strike zone and limit hard contact. Peterson shows some feel for a fringy changeup that he will need to refine to work away from the barrels of righthanders. The Future: Peterson has the best control and best slider in the system, with both grading as plus for some scouts. He and will rely on those attributes to prop up the rest of an arsenal befitting of a No. 4 starter.
Track Record: Born in the Netherlands, Newton trained in Curacao at the same facility as Jonathan Schoop and Jurickson Profar. The Mets signed him for just $50,000 as part of the same 2015 signing class that also included system No. 1 prospect Andres Gimenez. Newton didn't make his U.S. debut until 2018, when he thrived at Rookie-level Kingsport. He led the Appalachian League with 16 doubles and ranked second with 46 walks and 50 runs. Scouting Report: Newton is a tall, athletic middle infielder with wicked bat speed and room to fill out and add power. He's a switch-hitter who can drive the ball deep to his pull side while batting lefthanded with quick hands he uses to keep his bat on plane through the hitting zone. Some scouts see potential 70-grade power down the line as his 6-foot-4 frame matures. Newton works deep counts and collects lots of walks and strikeouts, which will depress his average but boost his on-base percentage. He is a below-average runner who some scouts project to third base or possibly even an outfield corner. The Mets think Newton has the range, hands and plus arm to stay on the dirt, possibly at second base. The Future: Newton speaks multiple languages and translates for teammates, and that maturity will serve him as he advances to low Class A Columbia in 2019. His bat could be special if he keeps developing.
Track Record: One of the youngest players in the 2018 draft class, Woods-Richardson wowed scouts at showcase events and then gained velocity as a high school senior. The Mets nabbed him at No. 48 overall as the 12th prep pitcher drafted. He made an abbreviated debut at two levels of Rookie ball and put up a 26-to-4 strikeout-to-walk ratio. He didn't turn 18 until a month after his season ended. Scouting Report: Tall, athletic and broad shouldered, Woods-Richardson is a prototype fireballing Texas high school pitching prospect. What sets him apart is his fiery, almost angry, mound demeanor and "now"stuff. He topped out at 97 mph and sat 93 from an overhand arm slot. His fastball plays up thanks to a high spin rate and plus extension. Woods-Richardson has advanced feel for a plus 12-to-6 curveball with tight break that sits in the mid-to-high 70s. He also uses a fringe mid-80s changeup that shows promising fade and average potential. The Future: Woods-Richardson clearly has the raw stuff to impact games in the big leagues--if he can navigate the long, perilous journey high school pitchers face in pro ball. An assignment to short-season Brooklyn is probable for 2019.
Track Record: Signed by the Phillies for just $40,000 a few months shy of his 18th birthday, Kilome developed into one of the system's best pitching prospects as he added weight to his tall, skinny frame and tweaked his mechanics. Philadelphia traded him to Mets at the 2018 trade deadline for Asdrubal Cabrera. Kilome turned in three quality starts in seven tries for Double-A Binghamton after the trade but had Tommy John surgery in October and will miss all of 2019. Scouting Report: Kilome's work ethic and track record for durability--he had never missed a start or bullpen session for the Phillies--attracted the Mets, so his injury was surprising. He embodies the pitcher type the Mets have sought to acquire in recent seasons. Kilome is a 6-foot-6, power-oriented righthander with a 93-95 mph fastball that peaks at 97 mph and plays up thanks to a high spin rate and plus extension in his delivery. His curveball is a power spinner in the mid-to-high 70s that plays as plus. Kilome rounds out his arsenal with a fringy slider and changeup. His entire four-pitch arsenal is undermined by fringe-average control and high walk rates. The Future: If he doesn't improve his fastball command, Kilome has the raw stuff to dominate out of the bullpen. He should assume a rotation role when he returns to the mound in 2020 and could be ready for Triple-A in short order.
Track Record: Szapucki struck out nearly 15 batters per nine innings in a pair of short-season assignments in 2016, but a pair of injuries compromised his 2017 encore. First he dealt with a shoulder impingement at low Class A Columbia that forced him out of action in April in May, then he had Tommy John surgery in July that knocked him out for the entire 2018 season. Scouting Report: Szapucki threw two electrifying pitches when healthy and had obvious major league impact potential. His stabbing arm action has been described by scouts as being more typical of a reliever, but he repeats his low three-quarters arm slot and generates power and high spin on his fastball and breaking ball. Szapucki sits 93 mph and bumps 96 with electric life out of his lower arm slot. His high-spin curveball reaches home plate at 76-80 mph with sweeping, two-plane break. Below-average feel for his changeup and below-average control headline his to-do list. The Future: Health permitting, Szapucki is a near lock to pitch in the big leagues. On the high end of his forecast, he could be a potential No. 3 starter or high-leverage reliever. But first he must navigate a complete minor league season, which he will attempt to do in 2019.
Track Record: The Mets' top pick in 2015, Lindsay has not produced offensively since reaching full-season ball in 2017. Injuries have cut into his playing time--he hit the disabled list in 2018 with a flare-up in his elbow that required nerve transposition surgery the year before--but even when healthy Lindsay hasn't resembled the hitter from early in his pro career. Something seemed to click during an assignment to the Arizona Fall League, even though he received sporadic play as a member of the taxi squad. Scouting Report: Lindsay matched his home run total from the regular season (three) in just eight AFL games as he emphasized a new swing that allowed him to contact the ball out front. That enabled him to hit the ball in the air for power thanks to his above-average exit velocities. Lindsay had been letting the ball travel too deep and was hitting too many ground balls, but if his new approach sticks, the Mets are willing to accept a few strikeouts for more power. He has always worked deep counts and draws walks at a high rate. Lindsay is a plus runner who has developed into an above-average center fielder as a pro after playing third base in high school. His arm is average and enough for center or left. The Future: Lindsay is one of the strongest and most athletic players in the Mets' system, but things just haven't clicked for him at the plate. Perhaps swing tweaks and an AFL confidence boost will do the trick in 2019, when he should be able to reach Double-A even if he has to repeat high Class A St. Lucie first.
Track Record: Alvarez's family owned a construction business in Venezuela, and Francisco took part in the family trade by handling 90-pound bags of concrete at age 10. That work ethic and raw strength serve him as a catcher, a position he took up at a young age. Alvarez's tools marked him as the No. 9 prospect in the 2018 international signing class, and the Mets signed him on July 2 when he was 16. Scouting Report: Alvarez has such large hands, wide forearms and intense grip strength that teammates have taken to nicknaming him "The Thing"from the Fantastic Four comic books. He is an intense competitor with the quick-twitch actions and toughness to become an everyday catcher. Alvarez hits for power in games with a short, explosive stroke, and he can drive the ball straightaway and to right field with above-average power. He has the barrel control, bath path and plate discipline to hit for a solid average. Alvarez's defensive ability and arm grade as above-average, though he needs to improve his lateral agility. He runs deceptively well despite his position and stocky frame. The Future: Alvarez faces a long trek to the big leagues, but he could be worth the wait. With a chance for an above-average bat and above-average defense to go with a grinding, win-at-all-costs mentality, he has first-division potential behind the plate.
Track Record: Guillorme has started at least 50 games at shortstop for each Mets affiliate from Rookie-level Kingsport up to Triple-A Las Vegas. He completed his six-year trek to the big leagues in 2018, when he spent much of May and June in the big leagues filling in for the injured Todd Frazier. Guillorme played second base and third base in New York but not shortstop. Scouting Report: Guillorme is the best defensive infielder in the system, with quick reflexes and sure hands that make him reliable at second, third or short. He doesn't have classic range at shortstop or a cannon for an arm, but he is above-average in both regards. Guillorme is a rare sight in today's power-oriented game. The lefthanded hitter sprays the ball around and in particular likes to wear out the opposite field. Scouts who like him see a future plus hitter because of this trait and also his patient yet high-contact plate approach. He has virtually no power and isn't much of a runner or stolen base threat. The Future: Without power or speed, Guillorme will have to be a consistent .300 hitter to avoid being relegated to a utility infield or possibly even up-and-down role.
Track Record: Cecchini entered 2018 with a lot to prove after a lackluster 2017 he spent repeating the Triple-A Pacific Coast League. At spring training he popped two home runs in seven games before being sent to minor league camp. Cecchini kept hitting at Las Vegas through May 9, but that's when he was hit by a pitch in his right foot and sustained a bruise that cost him the rest of the season. Scouting Report: Cecchini has grown noticeably stronger since the Mets drafted him 12th overall in 2012. He improved his swing plane and softened his front-foot landing in 2018, and the early results were tangible in terms of a higher flyball rate and enhanced power production. Cecchini retained a high contact rate with the swing change and could approach fringe-average power to go with a solid-average hit tool. A fringe-average runner, he is a capable second baseman with above-average range but he is stretched at shortstop by sketchy throwing accuracy. The Future: Positional flexibility could be key to Cecchini's future with the Mets, especially after 2018 rookie Jeff McNeil made such a rousing debut at second base. He could begin his fourth straight season at Triple-A in 2018, with his bat determining if and when he is called to New York.
Track Record: Nido opened 2018 back at Double-A Binghamton after spending the entire 2017 season there--but that didn't last long. The Mets called him up in April when catchers Travis d'Arnaud and Kevin Plawecki both went on the disabled list. Nido didn't do much with the opportunity, hitting .158 with one extra-base hit through the end of May before being demoted. He returned to New York at the end of August. Scouting Report: If Nido fashions a big league career, it will be on the strength of his defensive skill. He has above-average all-around ability behind the plate. He blocks and receives well but draws the strongest raves for his ability to frame strikes for his pitchers. He records consistent plus pop times on throws to second base and has a plus arm. At the plate, Nido has shown strong bat-to-ball skills in the minors, but major league pitchers have enticed him to expand his zone and chase breaking balls in the dirt, leading to predictably poor results. He has some power to his pull side but isn't a significant home run threat. The Future: Nido will play all of 2019 at age 25 and still has time on his side, because catchers tend to develop later. He should get plenty of reps at Triple-A Syracuse.
Track Record: Tommy John surgery cost Humphreys nearly half of 2017 and all of 2018, but he is poised to resume his climb up the Mets' organizational depth chart in 2019. Prior to his August 2017 surgery, Humphreys had breezed through low Class A Columbia, going 10-1, 1.42 in 11 starts to reach high Class A St. Lucie. Scouting Report: Control was a major asset for Humphreys prior to his elbow injury. If he makes a full recovery, his strike-throwing ability could be a separator. He paints both sides of the plate with a low-90s fastball that bumps 94 mph, while showing precocious fastball command for a young pitcher. Humphreys has grown into his 6-foot-2 frame since turning pro out of the Florida high school ranks, and all his stuff has ticked up. His above-average, high-spin, high-70s curveball changes eye levels and allows him to work north with his fastball and south with his breaking ball. He still must develop feel for his changeup to round out his arsenal and profile as a No. 4 starter. The Future: Humphreys could move quickly if he regains the form he showed in 2017 and could reach Double-A by the end of 2019. That would be a boon to a Mets system thin in upper-level starting pitchers.
Track Record: Drafted out of high school and then as an eligible Vanderbilt sophomore in 2016, Toffey didn't sign until after his junior year in 2017, when the Athletics drafted him in the fourth round. Oakland traded him to the Mets a year later, along with reliever Bobby Wahl and $1 million in international bonus pool money, for closer Jeurys Familia. Toffey was 23 during his 2018 full-season debut, so in light of his age, the Mets promoted him to Double-A Binghamton after acquiring him. Scouting Report: Toffey recorded a career-best .179 isolated slugging percentage at Double-A after the trade but faces questions about his power potential. The Mets hope offseason shoulder surgery will free up his swing to get to his solid-average raw power. Toffey has an outstanding batting approach that helped him run a 16 percent walk rate in 2018 and a .375 on-base percentage in pro ball. His ability to work counts and wait for his pitch should help him access his power. He makes consistent hard, line-drive contact that equates to an average hit tool with gap power. Toffey profiles at third base with above-average range and arm strength. The Future: Toffey's lefthanded bat sets him apart at third base, and if he can get to more power, he could develop into a second-division regular with strong on-base skills. He should reach Triple-A in 2019.
Track Record: The Brewers drafted Hanhold, who worked primarily as a reliever at Florida, in the sixth round in 2015 and intended to develop him as a starter because of his 6-foot-5 frame, repertoire and track record working in the rotation in premium college summer leagues. Milwaukee abandoned the idea in 2017, the same year they traded him to the Mets in an August waiver trade for Neil Walker. Scouting Report: Everything Hanhold throws is hard. After pitching in the low 90s early in his pro career, his four-seam fastball velocity bumped up to 94-97 mph in 2018 and tickled triple digits. He wasn't able to throw his fastball by big league hitters in a small sample, and even in the minors he tended to be too hittable. Hanhold's plus-plus 88-90 mph slider could be an equalizer. It has devastating late break and wipeout potential in and out of the strike zone. He also throws a changeup occasionally. The Future: Hanhold made his major league debut as a September callup in 2018 but appeared in just three games before a left oblique strain ended his season. He should see plenty of big league work in 2019 as an up-and-down reliever who has a chance to pitch himself into higher leverage work.
Track Record: Mets scouts were convinced of Cortes' hitting potential despite his stocky, 5-foot-7 frame and no true defensive home. He signed for $1 million and received one of just three seven-figure bonuses in the third round of the 2018 draft. Cortes is fully ambidextrous. He throws lefthanded while playing outfield and righty at second base, the only position he played during his pro debut. Scouting Report: Cortes may be short, but he's no slap hitter. He has a powerful, disciplined hitting approach that enabled him to rank top 10 in the Southeastern Conference in home runs (15) and walks (43). Cortes has the above-average raw power for double-digit home runs and the low swing-and-miss rate to hit for a decent average. He plays a workmanlike second base but doesn't stand out for his range, and his fringe-average arm is short for the left side of the infield. He is a below-average runner. The Future: Cortes' body type has led scouts to speculate that he would fit at catcher. The Mets haven't worked him out behind the plate and for now are committed to developing him at second base.
Track Record: Ryan showed promise as a hitter in high school, but when he hit 96 mph off the mound as a senior, he became a draft prospect as a pitcher. He played third base sparingly for two years at North Carolina before leaving the team. He made only one pitching appearance at UNC. Regardless, the Indians drafted Ryan as a pitcher in 2016 and signed him for $100,000 as a 30th-round pick. Cleveland traded him to the Mets a year later in an August waiver trade for Jay Bruce. Scouting Report: Because he was relatively new to pitching, Ryan moved slowly in his first full season of 2017, which he spent as a reliever at low Class A. As he wore down, he ran up a 6.27 ERA and .304 opponent average in his final 25 appearances. Ryan showed more stamina in 2018 by reaching Double-A Binghamton at the end of May. He throws a pair of high-spin pitches and shows good feel for the strike zone. His fastball sits 94-96 mph and has touched 98 from a low three-quarters arm slot. The pitch misses bats up in the zone with riding life and plus spin. His slider has improved in pro ball and flashes above-average potential with 81-85 mph velocity, tight spin and depth. Ryan throws a changeup occasionally. The Future: The Mets have toyed with the idea of moving Ryan to the rotation or at the very least using him as a multi-inning reliever. He is on track for a big league debut in late 2019 or 2020.
Track Record: The Pirates drafted Zamora out of Stony Book in the 40th round in 2015, eight picks before the Angels made the final pick of the draft. A starter in college, he worked exclusively as a reliever in the Pirates' system before Pittsburgh traded him to the Mets prior to the 2018 season for Josh Smoker. Zamora pitched well enough at Double-A Binghamton in 2018 to earn an August callup. Scouting Report: Zamora is effectively a one-pitch pitcher who threw his 76-80 mph slider nearly 80 percent of the time in a big league debut spanning 16 appearances and nine innings. No other reliever threw a slider (or curveball) more frequently than Zamora. It's a plus pitch with elite spin and significant vertical drop delivered from a near sidearm arm slot. His slider generates swings and misses from batters on both sides of the plate. He throws a fringe 88-90 mph fastball mostly to keep batters off his slider. The Future: Zamora is the heir apparent to Jerry Blevins as the Mets' matchup lefthander, a role he is ready to assume in 2019.
Track Record: The Mets acquired seven minor league relievers in a series of 2017 trades, and Smith was one of four to reach the big leagues in 2018. He was also the most effective, recording a 3.54 ERA in 27 appearances. The Mets acquired him when they traded Lucas Duda to the Rays near the trade deadline. Scouting Report: Smith sat 95-97 mph with an average velocity of 96 and peak velocity near 99 in the big leagues. That made him one of the top 40 hardest-throwing major league relievers in 2018. His curveball keeps the same company in terms of spin rate. It's a 78-82 mph breaking pitch with tight, top-to-bottom rotation. But despite impressive raw inputs, Smith needs to tighten command of his primary weapons for them to truly play as plus. He also throws a fringe changeup that surprises batters. The Future: Smith has the raw weaponry to dominate, but unless he takes another step forward at age 25 in 2019, he probably fits best in a medium-leverage relief role.
Track Record: A college pitcher with a 4.80 ERA and walk rate of 6.5 per nine innings in three years of Pacific-12 Conference play might not seem worthy of a sixth-round pick. But most college pitchers aren't Viall, a 6-foot-9, 250-pound Stanford righthander with a high-90s fastball. Scouting Report: Viall had ulnar transposition surgery that delayed the start to his 2017 season and a shoulder strain and triceps injury in 2018 that limited him to 15 starts at low Class A Columbia. He sported one of the highest swinging-strike rates in the SAL in 2018 with a 91-95 mph fastball that touches 99 and plays up thanks to the incredible extension in his delivery. His low-to-mid-80s slider is an above-average weapon he still needs to command and show batters he can throw for strikes. A below-average changeup rounds out his arsenal. Like most ultra-tall pitchers, Viall struggles to coordinate the long levers in his delivery and sync them to repeat his foot strike and arm slot. His control suffers as a result. The Future: Because of his fastball-heavy approach and dubious control, Viall probably fits best in the bullpen. But for 2019 he needs innings, which he will accrue in the high Class A St. Lucie rotation.
Track Record: Drawn to Dibrell's athleticism, projectable frame and quick arm, the Mets drafted him in the fourth round in 2017. He advanced to low Class A Columbia in 2018 and tied for the South Atlantic League with 147 strikeouts in 131 innings. Scouting Report: Dibrell pitches at 90-91 mph but has reached 95 on occasion, while the extension in his delivery increases his effective velocity. His above-average fastball is true, so he has to be precise, but scouts who like him project him to add a tick or two to his average fastball velocity. Dibrell throws a slider and changeup that flash above-average potential. His change is the better of the two, and he uses it to rack up swings and misses in both advantage and disadvantage counts. His slurvy breaking ball doesn't feature much power or spin but its big break catches hitters off balance. The Future: Dibrell has to throw more strikes to reach his ceiling of No. 5 starter or swingman, but he has the potential for three above-average pitches and thus has "overachiever"written all over him.
Track Record: The Mets don't typically invest heavily in 16-year-old international pitchers, but they made an exception for Santos, who they viewed as the steal of the 2017 international signing class when they inked him in September of that year for $275,000. He pitched effectively in the Dominican Summer League in 2018 as a 16-year-old in his pro debut. Scouting Report: Santos was 6-foot-6 when he signed but quickly grew another two inches. Despite his height, he shows the plus body control and athleticism to throw consistent strikes. He pitched at 93-95 mph for much of 2018 before wearing down late and pitching more at 91-93, albeit with plus extension and spin. He muscled up to 97 mph in side sessions and could sit in the mid-90s consistently when he matures. Santos needs to improve the power and break on his high-70s slider by keeping his fingers on top of the ball as he delivers it. The pitch features promising spin and movement. He also throws a promising mid-80s changeup with two-seam fastball action. The Future: Santos is driven to improve and has outstanding makeup, making him one of the most intriguing pitching prospects at the lower levels of the system.
Track Record: The Mets committed more than 80 percent of their nearly $5 million bonus pool to two players--Venezuelan catcher Francisco Alvarez and Dominican outfielder Freddy Valdez--on the first day of the 2018 international signing period. Then New York added an additional $1 million in pool money when they traded Jeurys Familia to the Athletics on July 21, granting the international scouting department the funds to sign Dominican third baseman William Lugo for $475,000 on Aug. 23. Scouting Report: Lugo puts an aggressive, confident swing on pitches in the zone and lays off borderline pitches, hitting lasers all over the field. His well-developed 6-foot-3 body gives him present plus power potential with a chance to add more. Despite a 215-pound frame that will only continue adding weight, Lugo is agile enough to stay on the infield, possibly at third base, where he has average upside as a defender. His below-average speed and body type could make first base a possibility in a few years. The Future: Lugo’s hitting aptitude gives him a shot to bypass the Dominican Summer League and earn a roster spot in a U.S. Rookie league.
Track Record: Megill worked as a reliever in his junior and senior seasons at Arizona, and the Mets inked him for $50,000 as an eighth-round senior sign in 2018. He made two starts among his 10 appearances for short-season Brooklyn in his pro debut, and the Mets plan to develop him as a starter. Scouting Report: While his rÃ©sumÃ© may be short, Megill checks a lot of boxes the Mets look for when scouting amateur pitchers. He generates extension in his delivery thanks to a 6-foot-8 frame and imparts a high spin rate on his pitches. Megill ranged from 92-96 mph in 2018 and shows starter traits with a relatively clean delivery and feel for three pitches. His power mid-80s slider flashes plus potential but tends to flatten out. He hasn't had a chance to develop his below-average changeup while working shorter outings the past two seasons. The Future: Megill will work as a starter in pro ball if for no other reason that to sharpen his fastball and slider for a potential future bullpen role. He heads to low Class A Columbia in 2019.
Track Record: Valdez stood out in the 2018 international signing class for his physical 6-foot-3 stature and immense raw power. The Mets signed him for $1.4 million based on his prototype right field tools, but they know his development will take time. Scouting Report: Valdez has a mature body for a 16-year-old, but his thin ankles and better-than-expected agility could allow him to begin his pro career in center field. Scouts project him to right field ultimately, and Valdez packs enough thunder in his bat to profile there. His loose, whippy swing and bat speed allow him to impact the ball for 70-grade raw power. Valdez will need to learn the strike zone to access plus power in games, because like many young sluggers he tends to be overaggressive and too pull-oriented. His lack of hitting rhythm and swing-and-miss rate will translate to low batting averages. He is a below-average runner but solid fundamental outfielder with a plus arm. The Future: The Mets will take it slow with Valdez, who should make his pro debut in the Dominican Summer League in 2019. He will advance as far as his bat takes him.
Track Record: Gilliam ascended to the role of closer as a Clemson junior in 2018 and led the Atlantic Coast Conference with 11 saves. The previous summer he pitched for USA Baseball’s Collegiate National Team, totaling nine strikeouts in 8.1 innings while not allowing an earned run. He struck out 16.1 per nine innings over 17 appearances in his pro debut at short-season Brooklyn. Scouting Report: Gilliam combines big stuff with a smaller, 5-foot-10 stature. His 12-to-6 curveball with tight rotation was one of the best breaking pitches in the 2018 draft. He commands his 78-82 mph curve for called strikes and as a chase pitch. Gilliam sits in the mid-90s and bumps 97 mph with a high spin rate that generates swings and misses up in the zone. He throws from a high arm slot and tends to work north and south. The biggest thing holding Gilliam back is control. He issued 13 walks in 17 pro innings after walking 5.2 per nine innings at Clemson. The Future: With two plus swing-and-miss pitches, Gilliam has a chance to advance rapidly in pro ball as a power reliever, especially if he can find a way to work ahead of batters more frequently.
Track Record: Smith floated between starting and relieving in three years at Georgia, but the Mets see enough starter traits to envision the lefthander in that role in pro ball--at least initially. He cruised through the short-season New York-Penn League in his debut, recording an 0.76 ERA in 23.2 innings while striking out 28, walking six and allowing just 12 hits. Scouting Report: Smith doesn’t pitch with big stuff, but he knows how to get the most out of his three pitches and low arm slot. His 6-foot-5 stature, long arm action and plus extension in his delivery afford him deception that helps his stuff play up. Smith pitches at 88-92 mph with a high-spin fastball that runs in on the hands of lefthanded batters, while his big-breaking slider features late break as it sweeps across the strike zone. Same-side hitters managed to go just 2-for-24 (.083) against Smith in his pro debut. He also throws a fringy changeup on occasion. The Future: Given his low arm slot, slider-oriented approach and early indicators against lefthanded batters, Smith might ultimately fit best as a matchup reliever. He has a chance to move quickly in that role.
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