Phillip Evans could be in the third base mix for the Mets

With a few exceptions, most notably the David Wright era, third base has been a traditional trouble spot for the Mets. With Wright’s future as a third sacker a huge question mark, to say the least, that position is up in the air. Third has been mostly manned by Jose Reyes and Asdrubal Cabrera this season. Neither player likes the position, both are long in the tooth and may not even be back with the Mets next year. One September call-up, Phillip Evans, has shown a bit of production so far in his very small MLB sample.

Evans is a 25 year old who the Mets drafted in June of 2011. His draft pedigree does not jump out at you, he was just a 15th round selection. He worked his way through the the Met’s system, and in 2016 he had a big year at Binghamton. In 96 games he had a slash line of .335/.374/.485, good enough to win the batting title in the traditionally pitcher-friendly AA Eastern League. He earned a promotion to Las Vegas for 2017.

Evans started off slowly in the PCL, and his slash line for the season was just .279/.341/.418. He was batting in the low .200s in the first part of the season, so he did significantly improve as the season went on. With the Mets, Evans has a .276/.323/.345 slash line in 15 games as of this writing. He has yet to hit a homer, and he has been more of a line drive hitter so far as evidenced by his .381 BABIP.

In the field Evans has been shuffled around in September, with games played at third, second and outfield. He has not yet made an error.

What can we look for in Evans going forward? Although he has not shown a whole lot of power to date, that could change. Batters often add to their power as they get into their late 20’s. Evans is listed as 5’10” and 223 pounds, so the frame is there to provide more power. Mets batting coach Kevin Long has had success in tweaking swings and stances to provide more power, and perhaps he can do the same with Evans.

Most scouting reports project Evans as kind of a utility player, able to play second, third and corner outfield respectably, and that could well end up being his role. But his upside is higher than that, if he can increase that OBP and SLG a bit, he might be able to hold down third base full time for the Mets for a few years.

9 comments for “Phillip Evans could be in the third base mix for the Mets

  1. Eraff
    September 26, 2017 at 9:06 am

    An elevated BABIP….. a mid 600 OPS…. in September AB’s??? Rule 5

  2. September 26, 2017 at 10:24 am

    The Mets can use a super sub akin to a Ben Zobrist. Don’t change his role just yet. The team is better off signing a FA or via trade for a third base man. You need proven power production from your corner infielders. I’m not yet sold on Smith hitting 25-30 home runs to replace Duda’s numbers. So that will be an additional pressure on the youngster.

  3. Eraff
    September 26, 2017 at 10:55 am

    Flores is a super sub

  4. Jimmy P
    September 26, 2017 at 11:11 am

    The Mets specialize in developing utility players.

    One point: Evans was drafted late, but signed well over-slot, so he was actually an important pick for the club.

  5. Pete from NJ
    September 26, 2017 at 12:24 pm

    Sometimes you just get lucky finding a player who becomes an effective starter. I would love for that lucky person in Phil Evans. AA batting champ but obviously the team didn’t think too much of him by not being on the 40 man roster.

    Lucky also means no Jose or Cabrera which frees money for a quality starting FA pitcher. Of course it wishful thinking and too much of a gamble but who knows?

  6. September 26, 2017 at 1:16 pm

    Since 1987, the Mets have had 34 players with at least 10 PA play 3B. In that same time frame they’ve used 57 guys at 2B and 72 in RF.

    I know some people like what they see with Evans. Me, I’m totally indifferent. I think he’s a fine bench guy but I’d say something similar about Matt Reynolds. I don’t believe either one is a starter but a guy to play multiple positions and get 100 PA or so a year would be okay.

    In fact, I can’t see a single reason to have both Evans and Reynolds on the 40-man. Pick whichever one you think has more upside and trade the other for an A-ball reliever, since that’s the only thing we trade for these days.

    • Chris F
      September 26, 2017 at 1:31 pm

      Ill take Evans over Reynolds. He managed to hit at some point and I think he is decidedly better on defense. Solid arm/glove. Not much to lose sleep over though.

    • Jimmy p
      September 26, 2017 at 2:29 pm

      If Mets get #6 pick, Sandy will go for a RH reliever!

      • John Fox
        September 26, 2017 at 2:46 pm

        Maybe he’ll get creative and go for a LH reliever.

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