Mets Minors: Jacob Rhame and the other new Mets

If I look at the 2017 season objectively, there is very little that I come away happy with. The Mets have suffered an absurd string of injuries that makes one wonder why Ray Ramirez seems to never be fired, they’ve underperformed and the team is beginning to look like it’s giving up on making a splash to compete in 2018.

One of the things that bothered me most this season is how little the Mets acquired when their fire sale began. The Mets began selling off pieces to make room for Amed Rosario, Dominic Smith, Brandon Nimmo and even Juan Lagares, but they didn’t seem to value the players they sold off too highly.

Drew Smith (Lucas Duda) – A relief pitcher who is 23 (going on 24) and currently pitching with the Binghamton Mets. Smith’s numbers aren’t bad but they don’t jump off the page as much of an “impact player”. A relief pitcher who’s K/9 hovers around 9.0 and WHIP sits around 1.000 isn’t something to sneer at, but is also not a “Hot Commodity”.

Stephen Nogosek (Addison Reed) – While many of the Mets “Acquisitions” are ho-hum pitchers who might eventually serve as middle relievers, Nogosek’s scouting suggests that he has some upside. The only problem is that this 22 year old prospect is currently struggling in Advanced A with severe control problems. Guess he and Justin Dunn can be good roommates.

Jamie Callahan (Addison Reed) – If you are to look for the silver lining of a player like this, it’s that he is close to contributing at the major league level. Callahan is in AAA (he just recently turned 23) and he will factor into the competition for the 2018 bullpen. The problem here is that he seems like little more or less than anything the Mets already had.

Gerson Bautista (Addison Reed) – Like Stephen Nogosek, he’s 22 years old and pitching for Advanced A. Unlike Nogosek, Bautista is pitching well. He’s also managed to improve his control and lower his WHIP since joining the team which might be an anomaly, considering the sample size.

Ryder Ryan (Jay Bruce) – The Mets traded a 30 home run outfielder who could seriously help Cleveland make a postseason run for a 22 year old pitcher who they sent to Columbia. If that doesn’t make you feel all warm and squishy inside, consider that he’s a former 30th round pick without any buzz.

Jacob Rhame (Curtis Granderson) – The prize of the bunch is a right handed reliever whom the Mets acquired from Los Angeles. Rhame is in AAA, has a proven track record in the minors and could develop into something of a high-leverage reliever. His K/9 sits comfortably over 10.0, his BB/9 is typically under 3.0 and his WHIP has hung around 1.200 for most of his minor league career. You can expect to see Rhame in the majors soon and he might be something that works out in the Mets favor over the long run.

AAA: Las Vegas 51’s

Jayce Boyd could be a valuable bench player – He’s had a solid year in the PCL, which has skewed his stats, but he’s likely to be versatile enough to be useful.

AA: Binghamton Rumble Ponies

Peter Alonso makes his debut – He’s reached AA and he’s hitting .350 in his first 5 games.

Patrick Mazeika hasn’t played since 8/23 – No injury news available.

P.J. Conlon is flourishing in relief – With the Mets set to have too many arms in the 2018 rotation this move with Conlon seems like a good one.

Corey Oswalt brings some fire – He mowed down 9 over 6 innings pitched.

A+: Port St. Lucie Mets

David Wright looks bad – He’s played 3 “rehab” games and looks like he will never be able to play in the majors again.

Wuilmer Becerra strikes out less – Only 5 in his last 10 games. That’s impressive for him.

A: Columbia Fireflies

Quinn Brodey flourishes after promotion – Out of Brooklyn and feeling fine, Brodey has a triple and a home run in his first 2 games.

A-: Brooklyn Cyclones

Wagner Lagrange enjoys promotion – He had 2 hits and a walk in his first game in Brooklyn.

R1: Kingsport Mets

Rigoberto Terrazas stumbes – He has a poor week but also racked up 7 walks in the last 10 games.

Juan Uriarte back on track – He looks like a catcher with some solid offensive upside.

R2: Gulf Coast League Mets

Wilmer Reyes making a mark in GCL – He’s a 19 year old shortstop from the Dominican Republic and he’s crushing it in his rookie debut.

Mark Vientos continues to surge – He’s making up for a slow start and showing his hitting potential.

30 comments for “Mets Minors: Jacob Rhame and the other new Mets

  1. David Groveman
    August 28, 2017 at 10:05 am

    In the end, Jacob Rhame, Drew Smith and Jamie Callahan are likely to be in the mix to see some time as soon as rosters expand.

  2. Jimmy P
    August 28, 2017 at 10:38 am

    Hey, they saved $12 million.

    If payroll was $150 to start season, about 12th in MLB, and they saved $12 million over the course of the year, I think payroll should be at minimum $162 next season.

    But then given the dire situation facing this organization — that without an influx of outside talent we are looking at a total rebuild and a virtually lost decade (if not for 2015) — I think payroll must go to $170. Which is still not a crazy number, bringing the Mets just barely into the Top Ten. Nationals is at $167 million, Orioles at $163 million, Giants at $172 million.

    The Mets play in much, much larger media market.

    Farm system will be ranked bottom third come Spring Training.

    It could be — we have to consider this — that Sandy Alderson has done to the Mets what he did to the Padres in San Diego.

    Despite the endless accolades, we have to consider that maybe he’s done a poor job. Professional, dignified, competent: just not very good.

    At same time, expanded playoffs has .500 Orioles only 2 games out of the playoffs. The Marlins, who started 17-30, are now 4.5 out. It doesn’t take much to keep the fans hopeful when losing Game 163 is considered an accomplishment. So many teams can now play meaningful games in September. Two-thirds of teams are within 6 games of playoffs. Four good weeks, that’s all it takes.

    Maybe next year!

    • David Groveman
      August 28, 2017 at 11:00 am

      The sad thing is that the Mets could be considered a top team for 2018 with a healthier season and a few key signings.

      The Mets need more offensive production out of 3rd base then they are getting and they need their hitters to produce.

      If Noah Syndergaard and Co are all healthy in 2017
      If Michael Conforto isn’t out for a whole season
      If Ray Ramirez could finally find his way to unemployment
      If the Mets signed Mike Moustakas
      If the Mets could just get out of their own way…

      • Chris F
        August 28, 2017 at 11:43 am

        All things considered, that doesnt seem like “The Mets Way” David.

        Im not sure how much Ramirez controls the training. He seems like a triage manager more than anything.

        Id like to see the end of the Barwis experiment. Baseball players play outside on a big grass field. They need to be limber. Any chief trainer that does not see the value in running and substantially more CV work along with yoga is blind. Ces looked like a side show freak. So did Noah. The one thing I wont hang on the training team is Conforto, who’s injury is just a wild freak occurrence.

        • TexasGusCC
          August 29, 2017 at 12:51 am

          Chris, I read that th Mets will look into having a kinesiologist, ala Pittsburgh and Seattle, two teams that had very few injuries. In fact, the Pirates have only used six starting pitchers this year, and we know from our past articles that the Pirates are big on monitoring fatigue.

      • Jimmy P
        August 28, 2017 at 11:55 am

        I agree that being a very good team in 2018 is within striking distance given a normal financial commitment from ownership and smart, creative decisions from management.

        I’m not expecting either.

        But any team that has Thor and Jake at the top of the rotation has a shot.

        With Conforto questionable in the first half of ’18, I think Mets regular lineup has Rosario and Cespedes as plus pieces.

    • mikeyrad
      August 28, 2017 at 3:56 pm

      I think that Alderson’s best days as a GM were when he was with Oakland in the ’90s, but that was 20 years ago. The game has simply passed him by.

  3. John Fox
    August 28, 2017 at 10:41 am

    discouraging, but not unexpected, to see the description of David Wright’s play

  4. August 28, 2017 at 11:23 am

    Got to see Columbia last night. My impression of their guys:

    Andres Gimenez – Had a body type closer to Asdrubal Cabrera than Amed Rosario. Generally looked good in the field but did have one ball clank off his glove. Hit the ball hard a couple of times but took an 0-fer

    Luis Carpio – Nothing really stood out.

    Dash Winningham – Made a couple of nice scoops at first base.

    Jay Jabs – Made a very nice running/jumping grab to take away a homer.

    Quinn Brodey – Had a nice swing.

    Jose Medina – After two good starts in the SALLY, he got hit around in this one. Other team had a lot of solid contact against him.

    Matt Blackham – Looked good closing the door. Had a nice little breaking ball.

  5. Pete from NJ
    August 28, 2017 at 12:05 pm

    I’m still fixated on last year’s Yankee trade off of veterans and their haul of prospects. Yes, different year and perhaps different circumstances. Yet Im still jealous of their strategy not mention this year’s success.

    Change of subject: I know Travis Traijeron’s ability and strengths have been hashed over but I would love to see him succeed and be in the mix for next year. Dreaming?

    • Jimmy P
      August 28, 2017 at 2:18 pm

      Such different circumstances for Yankees last season, but they definitely played it perfectly.

      I think you are dreaming on Taijeron. Don’t see it, and definitely don’t look for that type of player: terrible glove, high K, bad BA, big power.

  6. Jimmy P
    August 28, 2017 at 2:22 pm

    Here we are August 2017 and I don’t know if Wilmer Flores can play a passable 2B or not.

    I mean, I realize there are opinions.

    But can he play a Murphy-like level at 2B?

    I’d like to know, not guess, and I just haven’t seen enough of him over there to judge.

    • Eraff
      August 28, 2017 at 4:06 pm

      Jim… I think the reality is that he has value as what he Is. I think people just don’t want to embrace him with his limitations. Personally, I like Him and he’s very useable in the correct spots,
      on the right roster—probably a lot more valuable in the AL.

      It’s a heck of a demand to build a roster around a limited, backup player—it’s easier when your 1 dimensional guys are major Boppers. He’s not quite that.

      • Jimmy P
        August 29, 2017 at 7:17 am

        I am not advocating one way or the other, beyond expressing the POV that I don’t believe we’ve gotten a good look at him at 2B — his last, best shot as a starter in the NL.

        On a team with so many holes, it would be significant to fill one with a cheap player who very probably is still improving.

        The Mets discarded Turner and Murphy, and both are now Top 5 in NL BA. Hate to make a similar mistake with Flores.

        If he can play at a Murphy-like level at 2B, maybe that allows the team to address other issues. If he fails that test defensively — very possible! — then it’s not a solution.

        I am impressed with how he’s hit this season. Would like to see him at 2B this year.

    • DED
      August 29, 2017 at 10:31 am

      I think that Flores is in general a better fielder than Daniel Murphy, though you are right, there’s not enough Second Base in his resume to feel comfortable in handing him that position.

      I see Flores and Murph as fielders with similar range ability. Where I would give Flores the edge would be in the Derek Jeter skill bits: Flores usually has a good idea of where the play is, and what to do next on the field. Murphy seemed to suffer from brain-freeze, a little too frequently for my taste. Anyone who watched him play 20 games or so will remember what I’m referring to here.

      • August 29, 2017 at 11:17 am

        I disagree with this. My opinion is that Murphy was super into the game and always wanted to make the great play but for the most part he didn’t have the physical capabilities to do so. Murphy thought he could do the super plays that Derek Jeter did but he just needed to be happy making the play.

        Flores is part new-born deer who hasn’t figured out how his feet and legs work and part beginning dancer who’s too busy counting his steps trying to be in the right place at the right time. He can’t conceive of making a highlight Jeter play because he’s too busy trying not to trip over his feet or not throw the ball into the ground.

        Maybe the solution for both is to take a Valium and relax. Maybe one’s more likely than the other to get it. But I see their problems being completely different.

        • Jimmy P
          August 29, 2017 at 12:39 pm

          Funny comparisons and I agree with your takes on Murphy & Flores.

          Accepting that Wilmer would lack range, my concern is with him around the bag, his consistent (safe) feeds to Rosario, and the arm strength to finish the DP.

          Lot of holes to fill this off-season. Now it’s all about gathering data, news we can use.

        • Chris F
          August 29, 2017 at 1:04 pm

          I completely agree. I think Flores’ lack of baseball instincts represent one of his biggest obstacles. Murphy wanted to be Jeter, and even had glimpses, like the crazy stolen 3B against the dodgers in 2015. Occasionally he had a gem of grab, spin, throw that didnt end up in the dug out. Flores seems like he sets hoping no traffic comes his way. The other day hes playing in for a bunt, and the bunt goes at him and he runs to 3B letting the ball die in the grass. When the game is fast, he does not see the right move. I do worry about bad feeds to Rosario exposing him to injury and of course wild throws to Smith. Murphy is different to me, good instincts but limited by physical ability in the field.

          As for Turner…I just dont know how anyone sees that coming. Hes from Socal, so maybe that helps? (Go Cal State Fullerton Titans!)

          • Jimmy P
            August 29, 2017 at 2:29 pm

            Sorry to comment so much on this feed, but!

            I’ve been thinking about Turner, and I’m not willing to write that free pass to those in the organization for missing it.

            Sure, no one knew he’d become an MVP candidate.

            But my fundamental point is that Rule Number One an organization should know its own players better than any other organization in baseball. A guy like Turner was with the Mets for years. They saw him daily, worked with him, watched him, should have known him cold. And obviously they missed something.

            Fans reply, “Hey, none of us knew.”

            And I’ll say, “We’re not in the clubhouse. We’re not working him out. We’re not talking to him. We’re not paid to know.”

            Turner claims that he began to turn it around in the second half of 2013. He befriended Marlon Byrd, remember? Changed his approach some. And if you look at his statistics, month by month, sure enough something was different in 2013. He makes a leap. A step, an advance. Now a stathead might say, “Oh, that’s BABIP-driven, he will likely return to the mean, blah, blah.”

            But maybe a baseball guy, who sits on the bench, who is paid to watch these players closely, maybe that guy sees something. Or talks to Turner. Sense that maybe this player is putting it together.

            Clearly — without a doubt — there was a shift and the Mets missed it.

            What we heard was that Byrd was criticized for “coaching” players. Maybe Hudgens was saying one thing — hunting strikes! — and Byrd was saying something else. Also, as some might remember, Jeff hated Turner and badmouthed him on his way out the door. It was ugly and unprofessional and totally Jeff.

            The professionals in the Mets organization didn’t see what was happening with Justin Turner. None of us did. But those are the guys who are paid to know — and they missed it.

            I won’t kill the Mets on it, but I’m not handing out the free pass either. I will kill them on Murphy, a horrible call by Sandy, because that’s more than enough from me for today. Couldn’t wait to get rid of Pagan, too. These are the guys we should know.

            • Chris F
              August 29, 2017 at 3:41 pm

              Turner was blocked at the time. Alderson didnt like his clubhouse schtick apparently. I was sad to see Turner go, but didnt imagine what he would become. Remember neither Murphy nor Turner played like they did as a Met. Murphy had years of full seasons and Turner was a great bench guy. That both would become MVP caliber was off the radar IMO. Pagan? He couldnt leave town fast enough for me. Never liked him, never will.

              The one thing in common is that these player performed better outside a Mets uniform. I think thats a big deal. Different teams, players, structure etc. And of course different management and ownership. No GM would give the boot to a a legit MVP talent. Not even the mess in Queens!

              • Dan S
                August 29, 2017 at 8:01 pm

                Or, you know…the Dodgers could just be on steroids.

                It’s not just Turner, after all. Cody Bellinger hit one home run as a senior in high school and it’s not as if Clay’s DNA gave him a particular boost. He claims he got “mentored” into “launch angle” and that sort of thing at Rancho Cucamonga, but who’s to say he wasn’t simply introduced to 1990s-quality needle work?

                Chris Taylor, 1 HR in 120 ML games before this year.
                Chris Taylor, 17 HR in 110 ML games this year. “Coaching”? Yeah, surrrrrre.

                One power-hitting “miracle” I’ll accept. Two I’ll raise an eyebrow at. Three, I’ll start to wonder if Dave Roberts has Barry “Needles” Weinberg on speed-dial

                Just saying.

                Editor’s Note – Please do not capitalize words in your post, as that is a violation of our Comment Policy.

                • TexasGusCC
                  August 29, 2017 at 11:57 pm

                  It’s been mused around MLB…

  7. Eraff
    August 28, 2017 at 4:01 pm

    Most of the Broken Pieces are Pitchers…and it’s impossible to project from solid ground with low stability of Health and Performance.

    I want to challenge the asertion that “They” didn’t value their trade pieces highly enough—it’s plainly a charge that Alderson has no idea of Market valuations for the players he traded. Based on the numerous transactions made during this trade deadline, I’d say that it’s You who lack a proper valuation of players in this Market. The Contract Specifics…The High Qualifying Offer Requirements…. The Lower Level of Compensation for Lost Free Agents—these provide us with some of the explanations of why the valuations were begging….and there is no doubt that the valuations throughout baseball were very low during this trade period in comparison to past years.

  8. Metsense
    August 29, 2017 at 8:12 am

    The 2018 upper minor league system is pretty barren with Oswalt possibly being a replacement starter later in the year like Flexen was this year. They may also get a few relief pitchers from the summer trades but in 2018 they probably will not be impact relievers in their first year in the majors ( but with relief pitchers you can never know for sure.) The Mets have some former #1 draft choices on the 2017 roster that look more like backups than starters. Free agency looks like the best way to go and it will be expensive but necessary if they want to compete for a playoff spot in 2018.

  9. IDRAFT
    August 29, 2017 at 2:28 pm

    Jose Altuve
    Daniel Murphy
    Jonathan Schoop
    Brian Dozier
    Kevin Baez

    That is the entire list of MLB second baseman with a higher OPS than Wilmer Flores. Now add in the fact that Wilmer is only 25 and has shown nothing but steady improvement as a hitter. For me, I don’t even think there is a question that Flores should play 2B every day. And unlike the GM, I value defense, but that bat will play well, and there are a lot of other bigger issues.

    If the Mets want to be competitive in 2018 they need all of the above from the outside (as I see nothing internal of use for these issues) in no particular order:

    – Starting centerfielder
    – Starting first baseman (this is not a typo)
    – Starting third baseman
    – Starting and backup catcher
    – Two starting pitchers who aren’t useless
    – An entire bullpen!
    – A new manager
    – A revamped training program

    Good luck with anyone getting all of that right, especially this crew. Thank God for expanded playoffs, I guess.

  10. Jim OMalley
    August 29, 2017 at 7:23 pm

    So maybe we hire Byrd as the next manager!

  11. joe
    August 29, 2017 at 8:22 pm

    How many of the new players are rule 5 eligible? A few of them seem to be right around that age.

    • TexasGusCC
      August 30, 2017 at 12:03 am

      Joe, since you asked, The Entire List for this upcoming offseason of players I feel should be considered and are eligible:
      Callahan
      McNeil
      Roseboom
      Urena
      Bashlor
      Guillorme
      Knapp
      Oswalt
      Peterson
      Uceta
      Bautista
      Sanchez – a stretch but he’s a catcher

      Four candidates to come off are Becerra, Taijeron, Pill, and Milone.

      Syndergaard and Wright are currently on the 60 day DL, but the Mets only have 38 on the 40-man, so we don’t have to worry about making space.

      This may not be so easy this coming winter. The credit for the research goes to:

      http://tpgmets.blogspot.com/p/rule-5.html

  12. TexasGusCC
    August 30, 2017 at 12:22 am

    Again I’m in moderation? Is this because I back Wilmer Flores?

    • August 30, 2017 at 7:45 am

      It’s pretty simple – for whatever reason whenever you include a link, it goes to moderation. It’s not anything I’m doing, I promise you. So, you have two choices:

      1. Don’t include links
      2. Patiently wait until it clears

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