It’s time to give up on Reese Havens

Reese HavensBefore the 2013 season, Mets second base prospect Reese Havens‘ stock was at an all time low. Entering the season at 26 years old, he was no longer viewed as a legitimate prospect and realistically 2013 was make-or-break for him. There were still reasons to not give up on the offense-oriented second basemen, though. Specifically, and despite his age, his power, patience, and contact ability led to hopes of an above-average second baseman.

It was important for Havens to put his abysmal 2012 season, in which he hit .215/.340/.351 with a 29% strikeout rate, behind him. Although his injury woes were a fact of life, his incredibly poor performance that season was a new development. Besides just being injury-plagued, he was no longer producing. Despite that, the Mets continued to push him through the system.

Unfortunately for Havens, his poor performance and injuries continued in 2013. In just 38 games and 109 plate appearances with the Las Vegas 51s, Havens put up a triple slash of .237/.312/.330 with one home run and eight RBIs. A silver lining here is that his strikeout rate was way down at 13.8%, but obviously it’s a small sample size. Even when he was healthy, he continued to lose playing time to better prospects like Wilmer Flores.

There was a time when Havens was really the only second base prospect in the Mets system, including at the major league level. That’s changed, though, as the Mets currently have two legitimate starting options on the major league team in Daniel Murphy and Flores. In the minors, the recently acquired Dilson Herrera is now the top second base prospect and the system itself is pretty flush with utility-infielder types that have so far performed better than Havens.

The combination of injuries, poor performance, and age means that the 27 year old Havens is no longer a prospect. He will probably open the 2014 season in Las Vegas, but for the first time be viewed simply and absolutely as organizational filler. Those are harsh words, but the fact remains that Havens has not fulfilled all that potential he showed back when the Mets drafted him in the first round in 2008.

That draft, in which the Mets had three first round selections, seemed to hold so much promise. The Mets selected Ike Davis, Havens, and Brad Holt in the first round that year. Holt is no longer with the organization, and there remains a good possibility that both Davis and Havens aren’t with them much longer either. My, how times have changed.

9 comments for “It’s time to give up on Reese Havens

  1. October 27, 2013 at 12:47 pm

    That last paragraph is a sobering thought. My recollection is that everyone was pretty happy with those three guys at the time they were drafted. Now it looks like two whiffs and Davis is at the plate with an 0-2 count.

    As for Havens, here’s what I said about him in July of 2012 (link available in the last Related Post above):

    Unfortunately at this point in time Havens is nothing more than an org solider. In my opinion, he is no more likely to have 1,000 PA in the majors than Brad Emaus, Josh Satin or Zach Lutz – to name three older infielders currently in the Mets’ farm system.

  2. Joe Vasile
    October 27, 2013 at 2:53 pm

    I honestly had no idea anyone still had hope for Havens.

    • TexasGusCC
      October 28, 2013 at 1:19 am

      LOL, he had nothing else to write about just yet.

    • October 28, 2013 at 6:51 am

      This is a followup to an article I wrote back in January (as linked in the above story) in which I argue NOT to give up on him.

  3. tom
    October 27, 2013 at 3:34 pm

    Danny Muno had an excellent 2nd half – some power and speed, great on base %, and lots of lead off RBIs. He is another who is way ahead of Havens and should at least be a major league utility guy. And Mazzili is about to leapfrog Havens. His time has come and gone.

  4. steevy
    October 27, 2013 at 7:40 pm

    Just saw on NFL Redzone,Kevin Burkhart doing the Cardinals-Atlanta game.

  5. AV
    October 28, 2013 at 9:29 am

    Nice writeup. I commented on the piece back in January that I’m not ready to give up on him either. The fact that you used the same picture of Havens is telling, because if he did anything this year you would have had a new picture to use.

    Just goes to show that the baseball draft is the hardest one to predict. As you mentioned, the 2008 first round looked solid at the time and now looks like a bust. Havens looked good the first couple of years in AND he was considered an advanced bat being a college draftee. For all the fans judging the Nimmo and Cecchini drafts now, it’s still too early.

  6. Gonzo
    October 28, 2013 at 5:01 pm

    Ike… I can’t get over how much it sucks what happened to him. And given every opportunity in the world to show the Mets what he’s capable of…

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