Mets de-facto ace Mike Pelfrey is struggling, but the farm system continues to get excellent outings from its most highly regarded prospects.
Jenrry Mejia allowed no runs and three hits with three walks and five strikeouts in 6 2/3 innings in a win for Class AAA Buffalo at Scranton-Wilkes Barre last Wednesday.
The righthander was his worst enemy, committing two errors, one on a dropped throw while covering first base in the fifth and the other on a throwing error in the sixth.
After allowing just one runner to reach second in the first four innings, he got the final out of the fifth with runners on the corner and left the bases loaded in the sixth. Mejia departed with a runner on first and two out in the seventh.
“I was able to throw all of my pitches for a strike,” Mejia told MILB.com. “I was able to pitch ahead and change speeds. My changeup was my most consistent pitch in any count.”
The 21-year-old is 2-0 with no runs, seven hits and five walks allowed and 11 strikeouts in 12 2/3 innings in his first two starts this season.
“I’ve been able to recognize the importance of being a pitcher and not a thrower,” Mejia said. “I’ve been able to mix the changeup with the curveball, and that’s been key. The key has been able to mix my pitches and throw them for a strikes.”
Mejia loved his time with the Mets last season but admitted he feels more comfortable as a starter and is waiting for his next chance to start in the big leagues.
“For sure, I’ve prepared myself and I can’t wait for it to happen,” he said. “But I want to be 100 percent ready for when that happens.”
Further down the chain, Matt Harvey finally allowed a run – albeit an unearned run – in his third start of the season Sunday at Class A St. Lucie. The 2010 first-rounder allowed just two hits with two walks and three strikeouts over five innings for a 4-1 win against Fort Myers.
The 6-4, 210 pound product of North Carolina followed five scoreless innings on Opening Day with six scoreless frames last Wednesday in a 3-1 win at Fort Myers. He allowed three hits and two walks with eight strikeouts. He retired the first 10 and got a double play to escape a bases-loaded jam in the fifth.
The righthander is 3-0, 0.00 ERA in his first three starts, yielding 10 hits and six walks with 20 strikeouts in 16 innings. He is one of three minor leaguers with three wins.
Harvey’s teammate Jeurys Familia has been just as impressive in two starts.
The 21-year-old allowed a run and a hit with two walks and six strikeouts Wednesday in a no-decision at Fort Myers. The right-hander walked the leadoff hitter in the first but retired him on a double play, and no other Miracle player reached until a leadoff walk in the sixth . A double and a ground out produced the run.
Familia opened his season allowing one hit over seven scoreless innings April 8 against West Palm Beach. He allowed just a third-inning single but the next batter hit into a double play. The 21-year-old struck out seven and faced the minimum during his first outing.
That pitching tandem has led St. Lucie to a 10-1 record, best in the minor leagues, including its last nine straight
INTRODUCING Sam Honeck: The first baseman at low Class A Savannah, Honeck is batting a South Atlantic League-best .500 (19-for-38) with a homer and 11 RBI in 10 games. He is an amazing 9-for-10 with runners in scoring position.
In his last two games against Greenville, Honeck went 6-of-9 with four doubles, a homer and six RBI.
Honeck played just six games last season due to a compound fracture in his right tibia and fibula suffered in a collision at home plate last May 5 while playing for Savannah. That cost Honeck, already 23 and old for the South Atlantic League, a year of development, but he’s doing his best to play catch-up.
The 6-2, lefthanded hitter was an 11th-round draft pick out of Tulane in 2009 and hit .250 with a homer and 29 RBI at Brooklyn of the New York Penn League that summer.
AROUND THE MINORS: Two Mets prospects were taken down by right hamstring injuries and placed on the disabled list last week: Savannah OF Darrell Ceciliani and Buffalo OF Fernando Martinez. … Savannah 3B Aderlin Rodriguez, a 19-year-old prospect, is off to a 3-for-35 start with 10 strikeouts. Rodriguez hit .312 with 13 homers and 48 RBI at rookie level Kingsport last season. … Buffalo 3B Zach Lutz, who opened the campaign 2-for-13, has gone 9-for-19 since with five doubles, a homer and four RBI in five games. The 24-year-old right-handed hitter has a 1.417 OPS in 12 at-bats against lefthanded pitchers. Teammate CF Kirk Nieuwenhuis has hit in seven straight, going 10-for-25 with four doubles and two RBI. … Binghamton has just two everyday players hitting over .200 and nobody hitting over .250 through nine games. Allan Dykstra, the former Padres first-round pick acquired just prior to the season, is 0-for-7. However, starting pitchers Mark Cohoon, Brad Holt and Robert Carson have ERAs under 1.00 in two starts apiece.