The future in the present: Five potential September call-ups

Noah SyndergaardThis summer is drawing to a close very quickly. In just a few weeks it will be football season and the leaves will be changing as the temperatures turn a little more chilly. This is the time of year that baseball fans turn to the future in the present season; September call-ups.

It’s that special time of year when a team that is fading fast in their respective pennant races can get a glimpse of the talent that is on the cusp of breaking into the big leagues when the teams expand their rosters on September 1st. For teams that are in the hunt or running away with their divisions, it’s a time to reload of sorts and rest their veterans a little more often than normal.

It’s also a time where teams add much needed depth to their bullpens after a long, tiring summer. With this wonderful time of the season just a mere two weeks or so away, here’s five potential players the Mets might bring up to cure what ails them.

Noah Syndergaard: This is a name almost every Mets fan has heard or knows by now. He was acquired along with Travis d’Arnaud when the team traded Cy Young winner R.A. Dickey and catcher Josh Thole to Toronto. There have high expectations on this young man ever since. It was thought that he may be called up as early as this past week to make a few starts for the suddenly injured Jacob DeGrom but he stayed in AAA Las Vegas instead.

With the rosters expanding, it is almost a certainty that he will get the nod and experience his first taste of the MLB. With a 4.76 ERA and a 8-6 record in the minors, it’s tough to argue for him as ready for the next level, but with 119 strikeouts in 113 innings pitched, it’s even harder not to bring him up.

John Lannan: While this is a name that may make some Mets fans cringe, with the rosters expanding, a veteran spot starter or long reliever is an asset to a team like the Mets in September. Even if it is John Lannan. Early this season he had a stretch of five games where he pitched four innings and gave up seven runs.

Not good numbers. They’re almost reminiscent of Oliver Perez, but he is a veteran presence that the team could use on a situational basis. That’s something that the Mets always seem to utilize this time of year. Whether it’s to mop up, come on for a batter or two or start the first half of a make up double header, he could prove his usefulness in several ways next month.

Omar Quintanilla: This is a name Mets fans know well. He’s been a spot starter for the last few seasons in Queens, including as recently as the beginning of this season. He has a solid glove to make up for his .232 AVG in AAA. That alone is the most likely reason he will be called up.

In addition, he knows the team and the league. Late inning defense in a close divisional game will be a crucial key that the team will be looking to utilize. If nothing else, Quintanilla offers more security in a tight game.

Andrew Brown: As much as I’d like to say the team will bring up a young outfield, power bat to spark the offense like a Cory Vaughn or Cesar Puello, it’s far more likely they will bring up Brown. He has experience with the team and the coaching staff, plays solid defense and has a decent bat coming off the bench to pinch hit. He had eight hits including two home runs in 19 games earlier this season for the Mets.

He’s a player that has enough experience to benefit a team like the Mets if they’re fighting for any kind of playoff spot. He plays all three outfield spots well. His defense will help in late innings and he is a good pinch running candidate as well as pinch hitter type. The type of player that Terry Collins can use a lot.

Gonzalez Germen: The Mets will need bullpen relief. They have the starters that can handle mop up patrol and spot starts but what about the pitchers that can shoulder the late inning pressure load that Mejia and Familia have to endure? Germen is a viable option for that.

He, like most of this list, has been with the Mets at one point this season. He knows the coaching staff and clubhouse, he was sent down to work on some things and has shown tremendous improvement since and he has learned a little about closing out games this year. While with the Mets, he had one blown save with a 4.78 ERA in 21 games and giving up 11 walks and 14 runs in 26 innings pitched.

Since working his way through AAA, he has five saves, a 0.59 ERA, one run given up, five walks and 23 strikeouts in 20 innings pitched. In addition, lefty hitters are battling just .080 against him. In a lefty heavy NL East, he could be a tremendous asset if he holds to that trend.

Fans and media alike will be hoping for the recognizable names like Allan Dykstra, Kevin Plawecki or some of those I’ve named earlier for the sheer name value and curiosity of what they can do if given the chance. If the team is in contention, however, they would rely more on role players and experience as opposed to entirely handing over the reigns to untested minor league players simply because they put up good numbers in AAA.

It will be far more likely that names like those listed in addition to a Josh Satin or a Taylor Teagarden will be the ones we’ll have to live with for another autumn. If the team is playing meaningful baseball, though, I think we would all be happy to.

18 comments for “The future in the present: Five potential September call-ups

  1. jdrnym
    August 14, 2014 at 8:56 am

    Quintanilla is injured, out for season

    • Frank
      August 14, 2014 at 12:46 pm

      Right you are. I’ve just noticed that myself. That’s what I get for writing at 3am. My apologies for that one. With no veteran infielder in the minors, I doubt they’ll call up an infielder unless the team is out of it.

  2. August 14, 2014 at 8:58 am

    What do you think are the chances that we see Matt Reynolds up in September as well? We all know Ruben Tejada and Wilmer Flores aren’t the answers at SS (nor is Quintanilla)…

    • August 14, 2014 at 10:16 am

      Ordinarily, I’d say none because he’s not on the 40-man. But the Mets have two open spots on their roster right now. That should give hope to fans of both Reynolds and Syndergaard.

    • Frank
      August 14, 2014 at 12:48 pm

      I’m doubtful they call up any infielder unless they’re out of it. If they are, there’s a decent chance for Reynolds as Brian pointed out. He has been a standout.

  3. August 14, 2014 at 9:01 am

    I’m sorry Frank but there is zero chance that Lannan gets called up. What’s the point? If the Mets are out of playoff contention then you give those innings to the kids.You think this cheap organization is going to spend any unnecessary monies just to have a veteran hold the kids hands? I thought that was why they signed Colon? Lannan sealed his fate when he bombed out of the pen. I see this frugal organization bringing up 2 maybe 3 kids at most. Depending on the current state of pitchers and their health. Quintanilla had his chance. Can we at least turn the page and look at the future instead of rehashing the past?

    • Frank
      August 14, 2014 at 12:20 pm

      If they are out of it, they can justify bringing someone younger up. If they’re in it, they’ll be tempted to call Lannan up just for mop up relief and/or batter matchups. As I explained, I see him coming up, but I’m not happy about it. Depends on where the team is at the time.

      • Chris F
        August 14, 2014 at 12:41 pm

        Frank, this team hasnt been above 500 since there were flowers on my trees. They are not “in it” and havent been for quite a while. Despite crazy grandpa Terry’s proclamations of having to win, the only way games will be meaningful in September is to see what kids may surprise us and get ST15 invites. We are only 180ish days to pitchers and catchers reporting. Despite Q’s injury status, Im not sure why he would need to be called up? We already have the best SS in our system that is capable of major league play on the bench. Does Tejada need a back up? And of so, why wasnt Q already here?

  4. Name
    August 14, 2014 at 9:41 am

    My guess is that 3 guys will be called up right away.
    Catcher-Either Centeno or Teagarden, likely Teagarden.
    Bullpen arm-Germen, should be no-brainer unless Backman convinces the Front office that winning the PCL championship is important.
    Lefty-Lannan or Leathersich. Hard for me to guess which one, gut tells me Lannan because our FO loves old crappy veterans.

    I agree that all the other names you listed will likely get a shot in September. Q will allow TC to do more defensive replacements at the SS position. Brown will be here off the bench, but i hope TC isn’t tempted to start him as we have 4 other guys more deserving.

    Here are also the current minor league rankings, which may play into when guys are called up. We have 3 clubs that have near 100% shots of playing in the playoffs.
    Vegas is almost 100% guaranteed of making it, being 11 games ahead and 18 left to play.
    Binghamton is also 100% guaranteed of making it, being in 2nd place but 12.5 games ahead.
    St. Lucie is somewhat in it, they are 5 games out but behind 3 other teams.
    And the Gnats have already made it in.

  5. Chris F
    August 14, 2014 at 11:23 am

    I cant envision Syndergaard being called up given all weve heard recently.

    • Frank
      August 14, 2014 at 12:59 pm

      I can see it for all the reasons I mentioned in the article. They have the roster spots open, they can use a spot starter and the hype that surrounds him can pressure the team to call him up.

  6. blaiseda
    August 14, 2014 at 12:47 pm

    This post talks about the future but aside from Syndergard and possibly Germen none of the other players mentioned are expected to be future starters but rather are being retained in AAA for organizational depth. So if these players are the future, then its looks very bleak. At the very least September will be an attempt to get a higher draft slot.

    • Frank
      August 14, 2014 at 12:55 pm

      As I explained in the last few paragraphs, who they will call up is contingent entirely upon how close they are to any race. If they’re close, they’ll go with guys that have been there before. If not close at all, they’ll give a few younger guys a shot. I’m hopeful that they’re in contention but still give the kids a chance but I doubt that.

  7. James Newman
    August 14, 2014 at 1:11 pm

    I’d like to see Noah called up. The stuff is definitely there, and I’d like to see how it works in the majors. I hope Reynolds gets a look as well, and although I agree with where you’re coming from with Andrew Brown getting called up, I’d like to see what Puello has to offer. Puello, Reynolds and Syndergaard are likely to be impact pieces for the Mets next season, then the other veterans. Nice article Mr. Gray.

  8. Steve L
    August 14, 2014 at 2:12 pm

    I agree the Mets aren’t really in it now, 7 games back of the last WC spot and 6 teams they’d have to jump to get there (we’re now behind the surging Padres, yea!). I doubt much changes between now and September 1, even if they go 11-5 they’d still be a game under .500.

    I think Syndergaard gets the call regardless, and probably Montero too. I’d like to see Puello and Plawecki get a call up, so they can taste a little MLB action (not that either has thrived in LV this year). Normally I’d want to see Reynolds too, but Flores is blocking him at SS at the moment.

    Hate to say it, but it’s hard to care much about which veterans they’ll call up. I mean, I care in a “I never want to see Lannan in a Mets uniform ever again” kind of way, not in a “I hope veteran X gets called up” kind of way.

    • Chris F
      August 14, 2014 at 2:31 pm

      Hate to say it, but it’s hard to care much about which veterans they’ll call up. I mean, I care in a “I never want to see Lannan in a Mets uniform ever again” kind of way, not in a “I hope veteran X gets called up” kind of way.

      Priceless Steve. Priceless.

  9. Metsense
    August 14, 2014 at 9:31 pm

    Who on the current roster is the starting shortstop in 2015? If Murphy gets traded this winter is Flores the 2015 starting second baseman? This is the reason Matt Reynolds needs to be a September call up.
    Noah should not be brought up from a selfish, financial point of view. Promote him in May 2015 and get another year of control. A business decision.

  10. Eraff
    August 15, 2014 at 6:53 am

    Is Syndergaard a compulsory 40 man addition for next year? If not, I believe they’ll leave him at Vegas for the full year and reserve flex on the roster spot.

    As for those 5 guys addressing what ails the Mets…Huh!!!!!????

    Lannan will probably get some starts to address some innings limits for Degrom and others.

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