Before 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.