In the last full season under Wilpon/Katz ownership in 2019, the Mets had 15 players on their Opening Day roster who were originally signed or drafted by the team and two more who spent multiple years in the farm system. That team won 86 games.

Right now, 22 of the 26 spots for the 2023 Opening Day roster appear set, with only the final three relievers and one bench bat up in the air. Of those 22, only five – six if you count Kodai Senga – were originally drafted or signed by the Mets and another who spent multiple years in the farm system. It will be a disappointment if this team doesn’t surpass 86 games.

My preference is to give guys a shot from the farm system rather than signing a guy (cough, cough, Tommy Pham, cough, cough) who was last good on another team three years ago. But it’s also my preference to have Justin Verlander in the rotation rather than Tylor Megill. You need stars and if they come from the farm system – great! But it’s fine if they come from trades and/or free agent signings, too.

If we define a star as someone who posts at least one season with a 4.0 fWAR, here’s the list of current MLB players that came to the majors after spending time in the Mets’ farm system who became stars, listed by when they made their MLB debut:

2020 – Andres Gimenez
2019 – Pete Alonso
2018 – Jeff McNeil
2016 – Brandon Nimmo
2015 – Michael Conforto, Noah Syndergaard
2014 – Jacob deGrom
2013 – Zack Wheeler

Travis d’Arnaud just misses the list, as he had a 3.9 fWAR last season. If somehow Dominic Smith puts it together for the Nationals this year, he’ll fill the hole of 2017, as would Amed Rosario. We hope that Francisco Alvarez and Brett Baty will eventually fill in 2022 on this list. Megill is likely the best hope to have someone from 2021.

Can the Mets’ farm system get back to cranking out one star per year? That would be nice. Here’s hoping the org gives them the shot in the front end of their career and then pay them the money to make them career Mets, like it appears McNeil and Nimmo will be.

9 comments on “Wednesday catch-all thread (2/22/23)

  • TexasGusCC

    I saw a picture of Daniel Vogelbach and I had no idea who it was. Going into his free agent year, he means business. Vogelbach seems to have lost about forty pounds and looks lean. With Eppler completely insisting that Ruf and Vogey split the DH, it’s good to see the majority of the at bats are in an eager player’s hands. I don’t know much about Ruf yet, but my expectations are rather low.

    • Brian Joura

      Hey Gus – good to hear from you!

      Early news on Ruf isn’t good – he’s already taken a cortisone shot.

    • T.J.

      Vogelbach is in the best shape of his life. The one time that spring training statement may be accurate.

  • Steve Seidman

    I like the strategy that was used by the Dodgers!

    Not all our prospects will be successful for the Mets. Some won’t pan out; some will be traded. But I can see a Mets team in three years that looks like this:

    1B Alonso
    2B Mauricio
    SS Lindor
    3B Baty
    LF Nimmo
    CF Ramirez
    RF McNeil
    C Alvarez
    DH Ohtani

    SPs: Ohtani, Senga, Peterson, Megill, top FA (Wheeler?), Tidwell, Hamel
    RPs: Diaz, Smith, Nogosek, Reid-Foley, Ridings, FAs

    Bench: Parada, Guillorme, Vientos, FAs

    • Brian Joura

      Interesting that you see Mauricio as a 2B. He’s 6’3 and 220 pounds, which certainly isn’t your prototypical size for a 2B.

      I like Guillorme but I have a hard time seeing him on the Mets 3 years from now. Seems like he’ll leave in free agency looking for a chance to start.

      Finally, Reid-Foley is not good. My hope is he never throws a pitch for the Mets again, much less being on the team three years from now.

      • Steve_S.

        All good points, Brian.

        Mauricio would be a big 2Bmen—about the same as Vaughn Grissom, who played there for part of last year. He and Guillorme might very well be gone in a few years (along with Vientos).

        I do think that Reid-Foley is worth a bullpen spot. He’s a big, strong kid with a very good FB and he’s deceptive. And he’s got a couple of good slower pitches.

    • JamesTOB

      Why not simply switch McNeil and Mauricio? I’ve heard that Mauricio is quite fast. Perhaps a switch to the outfield, as has been noised about a fair amount, would make sense. If Cohen really isn’t concerned about money, I’d love to see Soto in the outfield in three years.

      • Steve_S.

        That might work, if McNeil hasn’t slowed down and if Mauricio can play the outfield.

  • Brian Joura

    Manny Machado, Padres agree to 11-year, $350 million contract extension

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