Robert Carson LHRP – Carson has a reasonably good shot of making the roster as a lefty in the bullpen but he’s hardly alone in the field and could be slated to start the year in AAA with Josh Edgin and some of the veteran arms getting the nod. The key with Carson is that he looks like he’s run with the Met decision to switch him to relief and that he has a future as a bullpen lefty (maybe even high leverage). In Spring Training you will likely see him throwing against righties and lefties but if the Mets are truly considering him as the LOOGY expect him to start facing 85% lefties in short order.
Jeurys Familia RHSP (RP) – You will hear again and again that Familia’s future might be in the bullpen but in Spring Training Familia is getting stretched out to start in AAA. Now… I fully expect Familia to pitch only a few innings (maybe 6 total) in Spring Training games before he’s sent down. I think the Mets have enough arms that they only need to look at Familia a little bit before he’s sent to minor league camp. It’s not a bad thing, it’s what needs to happen.
Gonzalez Germen RHSP – We risked players who I think are pretty good to protect Germen. Apparently Alderson sees something. I assumed Germen would be the 5th or 6th starter in AAA but based on his presence on the 40-man roster I’m wondering if he’s auditioning for the LRP role with the Mets.
Darin Gorski LHSP – Gorski might only play in 1 or 2 games (2-4 innings) with the Mets but being that he wasn’t great in AA I don’t think he’s going to stick around with the Big League training camp for long.
Collin McHugh RHSP – McHugh doesn’t have a real shot to make the roster unless there is an injury but he and Jeremy Hefner are going to get LONG hard looks in the Spring but McHugh is the one much more likely to head down to camp. You should get the chance to see McHugh pitch a few times. I would love it if he followed up Gee because that is the starter he is most like.
Hansel Robles RHSP – I can’t imagine Robles spending much time with the MLB training camp once games begin but it’s interesting that out of Luis Mateo, Gabriel Ynoa, Rainy Lara and himself, he’s the one on the 40-man roster. Perhaps that says something.
Travis d’Arnaud [R] C – I would say I’m 80% sure that d’Arnaud is going to go to AAA but he’s going to stay with the MLB club a LONG LONG time. He needs experience with the pitchers and Collins will try to give that to his future catcher. Buck and d’Arnaud will probably see similar time in the Spring.
Wilmer Flores [R] 3B/2B – Flores will be a little bit of a lightning rod this Spring. d’Arnaud takes most of the attention but Flores and his position and future with the Mets will be debated. I would pay attention to his defensive innings. He’s been shown at second a few times. I’m getting the sense that Alderson might prefer to trade Daniel Murphy and promote Flores at 2nd then to trade Flores. The more you see Flores at 2nd and the less you see him at 3rd, the more likely that becomes.
Reese Havens [L] 2B – Havens is healthy (for Havens) which means his back is probably sore. I think you will start to see Havens skip around the infield and see him at 2nd, 3rd and maybe even taking a rep or two at short as he might be transitioning to a future on the bench sooner than later.
Zach Lutz [R] 1B/3B/“OF” – Lutz in the outfield will be bad. How bad? Probably only Duda bad, but still… How much of it will we see? I don’t know, I think Lutz is sent to the minor league camp in the final round of cuts.
Wilfredo Tovar [R] SS – Tovar will spend a good amount of time playing late innings with the Mets. Sure, Omar Quintanilla and Brian Bixler will get their reps at short but Tovar will stick around with the big-league camp because he’s defensively good at short and can replace Tejada or whomever late in games. Ruben Tejada LITE will be in AAA or AA to start the year.
Juan Lagares [R] OF – Lagares will get a hard look, but not necessarily a long one. He needs the confidence boost of Las Vegas to hopefully find a bit more power in his swing. I still hold out a slim hope that he could be a 15 HR hitter who hits around .300.
Cesar Puello [R] OF – Puello and PEDs is the topic right now, but Puello in big-league camp should last 1-2 games of late inning replacement work.
Jordany Valdespin [L] 2B/3B/OF – I’ve heard he’s focusing more on the infield. I feel like throwing my arms up in the air and asking “Why are the coaches so willfully stupid?” They likely know more than I do, but if Spin’s boost in OBP that we saw in the winter leagues was real then he’s potentially our best leadoff option and a thought for a starting OF role.
Cory Mazzoni RHSP – He struggled in AA and will likely repeat their but with people thinking his future is in the pen you might see Mazzoni stick around a bit longer than most AA people would because the Mets might look to toss him into a few extra 1 inning outings before stretching him back out in minor league camp.
Rafael Montero RHSP – There are whispers about Montero heading to the pen. I don’t understand that, but if that is the case he could be in the same boat as Mazzoni. I can’t explain why there would be the rush to shift him from a starting role so I expect him to get an inning or three and then move to minor league camp.
Juan Centeno [L] C – Centeno should stick around camp a while (with Anthony Recker). Ceteno is likely going to AAA but being a lefty and mixing with Buck or d’Arnaud might work out for Centeno who looked pretty good in 2012. I think he’s the future backup catcher (at least until Cam Maron and later Kevin Plawecki are ready).
Josh Satin [R] 2B/1B/3B – Poor Satin. He needs to get off this team but nobody made him a Rule V and he must toil one more year on a team that has no room for him. He’s staring up at Murphy, Turner, Lutz, Bixler, Quintanilla, Flores and Havens and while he might be a great pinch hitter, he’s unlikely to get the chance in Flushing.
Matt Den Dekker [L] CF – I think Den Dekker will get a long-ish look in center in the Spring and last until the final round of cuts are made. He’s the best defensive CF on the roster and he has a higher ceiling than any of the OF candidates (except maybe Valdespin, who is apparently not being considered…). Den Dekker will likely be headed for AAA where I expect him to succeed and then eventually as a call-up in the MLB where I expect him to flounder. I also expect him to rebound in 2014 and be our CF (barring a free agent signing).