Mets Minors: Franklyn Kilome is a step in the right direction

The Mets traded their veteran infielder Asdrubal Cabrera to their divisional rivals in Philadelphia for prospect Franklyn Kilome and the fanfare was not particularly huge. Essentially, the Mets have given up a rental on a player they were likely going to allow to leave in Free Agency in exchange for a pitcher with “Ace” caliber stuff. It is possible and even likely that he doesn’t reach the majors as a starter but one should never look a gift horse in the mouth and getting a 1st Tier prospect for Cabrera is nothing short of a gift.

The Good: An athletic 6’6” frame and a solid mid 90s fastball combine to give Kilome a powerful basic weapon against any hitter. Additionally, he has a well rated curveball and a slider that can be used to change the pace. He once through a knuckle curve but that seems to have been set aside in favor of throwing more strikes.

The Bad: Throwing strikes is not his best quality. Control has proven to be an issue for Kilome, particularly with his breaking pitches. To make matters worse, he lacks consistency with his changeup, which could be problematic if he wishes to hold onto his role as a starting pitcher.

The Outlook: The Mets now have two, similarly skilled starters in AA and that is exactly where the Mets needed to have their pitching depth. With Matt Harvey long out of town, Steven Matz looking completely lost and Zack Wheeler pitching himself into the front ranks of the trade market, the Mets need pitchers like Kilome to help fill out the future rotations behind the likes of Jacob deGrom and Noah Syndergaard.

Early Returns: In his first two starts for Binghamton Kilome managed to pitch solidly. His WHIP has stayed to a 1.11 level and he has limited his walks. The Mets will need to work with his control and develop a changeup quickly or else shift him into a relief role where he might be truly most effective.

MLB:

Jeff McNeil still looks great – Maybe it isn’t to last but 10 games into his first Major League experience and McNeil looks to be doing his best to lock up a 2019 starting job. (Batting Line: .320/.452/.480)

AAA:

Peter Alonso is winning the contest – Who looks better, Alonso or Dominic Smith? Smith is hitting .179 in his last 10 games, so you do the math. (Alonso is Hitting .310 in his last 10 games)

AA:

Will Toffey has been solid – He’s off to a good start with his new team as he looks longingly at the eternally vacant spot left by David Wright in the majors. (Batting Line: .273/.418/.432 with the Mets)

Andres Gimenez likes AA just fine – The Met top prospect has looked particularly good over his last 10 games for the Rumble Ponies. (Last 10 Games: .371 BA, 3 BB, 4 K and 2 SB)

Justin Dunn is locked in – With the Mets thinking about parting ways with Wheeler, Dunn gives me lots to hope for. (Last Start: 6.0 IP, 3 H, 1 ER, 2 BB and 9 K)

Tim Tebow is still relevant – He keeps hitting and despite my gut feeling that it’ll never matter in the big leagues he looks like a competent baseball player. (Last 10 Games: .297 BA)

Levi Michael needs to do this in AAA or The Majors – It’s great to see Michael succeed in AA but at 27 the time is past for him to tear through AA. (Last 10 Games: .303 BA)

A+:

Joe Cavallaro brings some heat – He’s not an upper echelon talent pitcher but he’s getting guys out in Port St. Lucie. (Last 2 Starts: 17 K)

A:

Tony Dibrell is the star of Columbia – He has some pretty spectacular strikeout numbers to boast about right now. (Last Start: 6.0 IP, 1 H, 1 ER, 2 BB and 10 K)

A-:

Wagner Lagrange looking good – He was one of a bevy of stars from 2017’s Kingsport squad but he’s one of the best performing of 2018. (Last 10 Games: .333 BA)

Jaison Vilera is ready for more – The Mets should think about testing Vilera in Columbia as he might be ready for Port St. Lucie in 2019. (Year Stats: 46.0 IP, 0.78 ERA, 0.83 WHIP and 56 K)

R2:

Luis Santana continues his brilliant season – The 19 year old prospect has been one of the best offensive stories in the minor leagues this year. (Last 10 Games: .394 BA and 4 SB)

Here comes Mark Vientos – A player that Mets360 typically ranks in the Top 10 of Met prospects, Vientos is on an incredible tear. (Last 10 Games: .429 BA, 4 HR, and 1 SB)

R1:

Ronny Mauricio slows down – For a player who has hit 19 extra base hits in his first 38 games (at 17 years of age) we can accept a little slump. (Last 10 Games: .256 BA)

16 comments for “Mets Minors: Franklyn Kilome is a step in the right direction

  1. TexasGusCC
    August 6, 2018 at 12:37 pm

    David, there’s also a write up of Kilome in the NYPost today. While all prospects can be developed into useful pieces theoretically, anytime you get a prospect that has a chance to develop into a top pitcher, you must be pleased. Also, the return for Familia wasn’t terrible, they should have netted another piece and it’s the rumors that the Mets could have done better by including cash that drives the fans into a frenzy.

    Further, a trade of DeGrom could have really infused the system, and I would have marketed him better but not pulled the trigger on less than I wanted. In their Metsonian ways, the Mets put their toe in the water but were hesitant to truly jump in.

    While the Sahara known as the Mets farm tries to replenish itself, my lone disappointment is Desmond Lindsey, who is slipping more and more into oblivion. That 2015 draft will forever be the most talked about gaffe of Alderson’s many gaffes. Unbelievable that a person of such intelligence would be more stubborn than a mule and keep repeating his free agent mistakes.

    • David Groveman
      August 6, 2018 at 2:45 pm

      Come on Gus,

      Get your rose colored glasses on and get back into that 1960s mentality. The Mets now have a Top 10 prospects on par with most solid farms and their Top 30 is beginning to look like one of the deeper groups in baseball.

      That isn’t the Sahara.

      • TexasGusCC
        August 6, 2018 at 6:49 pm

        Dave, I’m not sure if your messing around or not, but there isn’t a single blue chipper, including the two guys we wrap our dreams around. The top-30 is improportionally full of right handed relievers.

        Secondly, the Mets don’t have an outfielder (I’m not going to start printing Kelenic,HOF decals yet), a third baseman, or a catcher worth writing about. Ali Sanchez is probably a backseat to Nick Meyer now, and Vientos and Kelenic are both in Kingsport. In fact, Vientos repeated Kingsport for some reason without a promotion, and many guys in the 12-20 slots already look more AAAA than MLB, like Tomas Nido, for example. Looking at the top two levels of the minor leagues, the Mets recycle more prospects than DuPont recycles aluminum.

        The Mets need to bring in both Cubans (but I’d prefer a third Cuban that would really wake up the masses except the Coupons aren’t forced to sell) in order to add some athleticism and length to the top-10.

        • August 6, 2018 at 10:47 pm

          Let’s see – off the top of my head

          Dunn, Kilome, Peterson, Kay, Szapucki, Vilera, Humphreys, Dibrell, James, Viall, Crismatt
          Sanchez, Valdez, Uriarte
          Alonso, Vazquez, Chambers
          Santana, Michael, Rasquin
          Vientos, Moreno
          Gimenez, Mauricio, Carpio
          Kelenic

          That’s 26 guys without mentioning a righty reliever. And if I went and looked at lower levels, I could get more OFers, too.

          Vientos played all of four games at Kingsport last year. And he was converting full time to 3B from SS.

          It seems to me you want to bash the farm system on general principle without looking at what’s actually in the system.

          • TexasGusCC
            August 7, 2018 at 1:14 am

            Urarte? That boat hasn’t sailed? Vilera? Chambers, a first baseman in Brooklyn? LOLLLLLLL

            As for Moreno and Rasquin in Brooklyn, the 27 yo Michael in AA, or the Ruben Tejada-lite Carpio, come on!

            Brian, I know you keep an eye on the minors, but want to tell me why all the ones who get paid to do this have much different lists from yours?

          • TexasGusCC
            August 7, 2018 at 1:39 am

            Actually, Uriarte is not the player I was thinking of. I confused him with Urena.

            But, my point is even on your list, most of the players referenced are A- and below. Their chances are slim. If our lower minors were so stacked, why are they all around .500, which is a huge step up from the way below .500 of our upper minors?

            • August 7, 2018 at 9:39 am

              I’ll reply to both of your posts here.

              Coming into this year I had Mark Vientos as the second-ranked prospect in the org. No one else had him anywhere close to that high. Every list is subjective and the only way to grade them is years after the fact. I’ve had guys that I rated higher than others who went on to have more success than other people thought. I’ve had guys that I rated higher than others who went on to be busts. Every single person who’s been doing this for awhile will have the same line. So, why should I care that my list doesn’t match up with others?

              Moreno is dealing with learning new positions on the fly. He’s a SS who they have playing both 3B and the OF this year. He didn’t debut on time (injury?) and then got off to a slow start. But he’s a top athlete who’s shaken off a slow start to hit well.

              Rasquin is a hitter and his current placement is part punitive and part room-based. He was one of the best hitters on Columbia before the suspension. If you want to knock him for the meth use – that I understand. But his baseball ability?

              Michael is a former first-round pick given up by the org that drafted him. He’s had a terrific season this year. Sometimes things come together at age 21 and sometimes they come a little later. For Pete’s sake, we’re watching Jeff McNeil having a breakout year at age 26. No reason to be down on a guy for doing it a year later. If anything, be down on the Mets for not promoting him for more than a few days.

              Carpio took awhile to recover from his shoulder injury. Check what he’s been hitting the past six weeks. And that’s at age 20 in Hi-A.

              I wish that the Mets had their best players in the high minors. But that’s not reality. Reality is that they have some guys at that level and they have more guys in the lower levels. When you’re ranking a farm system, the thing you care most about is talent. The talent is not going to be distributed equally, whether by age or by position. Last year the Braves had the top-ranked farm system in the game. But when Freddie Freeman went down, they didn’t have a 1B to promote. They signed James Loney hoping he would work out and he didn’t. They ended up having to trade for Matt Adams. They also gave 13 starts to a guy with an 8.14 ERA because they didn’t have a SP ready sooner.

              Just because you have a top farm system doesn’t mean you have unlimited number of guys at every position ready to step in immediately. That’s pure fantasy.

              Keith Law is no fan of the Mets. That said, I like his prospect evaluation and his farm rankings. Coming into 2018, he had the Mets’ system ranked 21st. I believe when he does the ranking for 2019, they will move up and be in the top half of the majors and a top 10 ranking isn’t out of the question.

              Finally, nothing is less important than minor league win totals from the perspective of MLB clubs. You have to give lip service to the idea that winning in the minors is important. If not, why else would the people in Peoria come out and pay money to watch the games?

              The idea is to have a place where your prospects can play and get experience. You can have the team that wins and is filled with starters who are 5 years older than league average and not have a single prospect on the club. Shoot, that’s what the Buffalo owners wanted. They didn’t care about grooming guys for the majors. They wanted a club filled with Val Pascucci types. Are you going to care that Binghamton went under .500 this year if Peter Alonso, Nabil Crismatt, Justin Dunn, Andres Gimenez, Franklyn Kilome and Jeff McNeil end up as MLB contributors?

              I know I won’t.

              • TexasGusCC
                August 7, 2018 at 1:20 pm

                Brian, while there isn’t any debate over anything you wrote, my point is since an A Ball player has a 10% chance of getting to the majors, below that would obviously be slimmer and that’s where most players are for the Mets although they finally focused on adding some athleticism in the last few years. While you’re in a better position to “lay eyes on them” than I am, I try to follow their results in a nightly basis for the last six or so years and when you see players struggle for extended periods in the lower minors, like Medina has since his hot start in Brooklyn and thus being dropped to sixth in the order, that has to raise a red flag.

                As for the record, I have found that the better systems have more talent on their teams and usually have better records. However, since the goal is to feed the parent club, yes that is the priority.

                • August 7, 2018 at 1:59 pm

                  FWIW, my belief is that laying eyes on ballplayers is massively overrated, unless you can see someone multiple times during various points of the season and preferably in different venues. Name saw Keston Hiura earlier in the year when he couldn’t hit a lick. If someone saw him in June, they’d come away with a completely different opinion of him than Name. Or if you watched David Thompson in every home game last year in Binghamton, you’d have a completely different view of him than if you saw him all nine games in Erie.

                  • Eraff
                    August 7, 2018 at 5:24 pm

                    I believe the top “prospect guys” Are getting a good bit of exposure to the players, both directly and through their contacts with scouts who have seen players multiple times. Stats make us want to confirm the talent with our eyes,,,,our eyes make us want to look at the stats.

                    It is true that my eyes on experience with a player is less meaningful than his stats…..the same is not true of an experienced scout.

                    A big part of the developmental scouting process is to observe what a player may “have” that is not appearing in Games and Box Scores Consistently. When you see a Player do something, even once, it Means he Has It….somewhere. Power that hasn’t been produced in games and that never appears in a box score or advanced stat.

                    This remains a wonderful game…made even more wonderful with more and better stats..,,and it’s not all about stats.

  2. August 6, 2018 at 4:44 pm

    Alonzo is Smith

    • Chris F
      August 6, 2018 at 10:19 pm

      Nice to hear from you amigo.

    • TexasGusCC
      August 7, 2018 at 1:15 am

      🙂

  3. EB (Santa Monica)
    August 6, 2018 at 4:50 pm

    Isn’t Tebow on the DL?

  4. TC
    August 6, 2018 at 5:10 pm

    Dude – where do you get the idea Mets are going away from Wheeler and Matz? It’s exactly the opposite. Appreciate you being fair with the Kilome review.

  5. Mike Walczak
    August 6, 2018 at 6:35 pm

    I think Kilome was a good prospect to get for Cabrera.

    I think it is going to take 2-3 years for the Mets to get good. By then, they will be out of the really bad contracts and will have to invest heavily in retaining deGrom and Syndergaard followed by hopefully, young players who come up.

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