Two things to cover in this Wednesday update.

1. Kumar Rocker to undergo Tommy John surgery. The Mets were looked at askance when they used the 10th overall pick in the draft two years ago to select Rocker and then refused to even give him an offer after they saw his medicals. They were right that there was a big risk in signing him. But just because their concerns about his need for surgery were proven right – was it still the correct call not to sign him? People get TJ surgery all of the time and come back at a very high rate – apologies to Jeremy Hefner. There were also worries about Rocker’s shoulder.

But it’s difficult to think about the Rocker situation and not flash back to 2012 when the Mets passed on drafting Lucas Giolito because of the dual concern of injury and salary commitment. Giolito dropped to the 16th pick of the draft. And he did end up having TJ surgery, too. But he made the majors in 2016 and has been a reliable starter since 2019. And he’s one of the pitchers that the rumor mill has the Mets potentially interested in acquiring to shore up their own shaky rotation.

Instead of Giolito, the Mets took Gavin Cecchini with the 12th overall pick. That one didn’t work out at all for them. The hope is that the Mets did better with the compensation pick they received for not signing Rocker – which turned into Kevin Parada. Considered a potential top-five pick, the Mets got Parada at number 11 overall. After 124 PA at Hi-A, Parada has a .798 OPS, which is 180 points higher than Brooklyn’s team average in the category. It’s the second-best mark on the club, trailing only Stanley Consuegra and his .828 mark.

2. Mets to promote Mark Vientos. The club finally ran out of reasons not to promote a top prospect who was killing it at Triple-A while the big club had to scrounge to find offense. There’s still no clear path to playing time, unlike what was available for Francisco Alvarez and Brett Baty. But that doesn’t mean the Mets can’t find more playing time, if they only make it a priority.

Vientos is probably going to strike out even more than Alvarez, who sits with a 28.7 K%. He’s probably not going to produce a much-higher AVG than Alvarez’ .216 mark, either. But he’ll provide some more power than the .119 ISO of Daniel Vogelbach or the .090 of Jeff McNeil or the .033 of Luis Guillorme. The Mets haven’t announced the corresponding move to get Vientos on the roster but smart money has Guillorme being sent to the minors, with Eduardo Escobar taking over Guillorme’s role of playing 2B when McNeil moves to the outfield.

Tommy Pham and his .632 OPS (75 OPS+) overall and his 1-18 (.237 OPS) since May 4 gets a reprieve since the Mets didn’t call up Ronny Mauricio at the same time.

20 comments on “Wednesday catch-all thread (5/17/23)

  • David Groveman

    I’d like to thank the Academy… my agent and the fans. It’s is you that made all of this possible. Vientos’ promotion is clearly caused by my constant barrage of complaints every time the Mets start Canha or Pham as the DH and now… if Vientos fails to deliver you can all blame me.

    In all seriousness, expect some adjustment. Also, expect power. One part of Vientos’ game that will be present regardless of how hot or cold he is, is that when contact happens the ball goes places. With Fleming starting tonight it’s a great time to break out the vs LHP lineup.

    1. Brandon Nimmo – CF
    2. Fracisco Lindor – SS
    3. Pete Alonso – 1B
    4. Brett Baty – 3B
    5. Mark Vientos – DH
    6. Jeff McNeil – 2B
    7. Starling Marte – RF
    8. Francisco Alvarez – C
    9. Mark Canha – LF

    Unfortunately I foresee Buck doing this:

    1. Brandon Nimmo – CF
    2. Fracisco Lindor – SS
    3. Pete Alonso – 1B
    4. Tommy Pham – LF
    5. Starling Marte – RF
    6. Mark Canha – DH
    7. Jeff McNeil – 2B
    8. Mark Vientos – 3B (expect errors)
    9. Francisco Alvarez – C

    • Bob P

      I like your first lineup David but I also don’t see it happening. I will predict this:


      I’d be surprised if Vientos gets put out in the field right away. But who knows. We will see.

      • David Groveman

        1. Brandon Nimmo – CF
        2. Eduardo Escobar – 2B
        3. Fracisco Lindor – SS
        4. Pete Alonso – 1B
        5. Tommy Pham – DH
        6. Starling Marte – RF
        7. Mark Canha – LF
        8. Mark Vientos – 3B
        9. Francisco Alvarez – C

        I am not happy with Buck

        • BoomBoom

          It’s against the Rays so hopefully this lineup was set to gain platoon advantages (does it even matter though) later in the game when the Rays go to the pen.

  • JimO

    Lets go Vientos!

  • Woodrow

    Vientos is a DH,accept it. No need for him to play 3B. A DH who can hit 20-25 HRs has a lot of value.

  • Woodrow

    How long till they give Mauricio the call? I can’t see why they’re waiting.

  • Name

    I’ll go on record to say I think Vientos will suck. Expecting a sub 600 ops

    • David Groveman

      I hope you are wrong but know that it’s certainly a very possible outcome here.

    • Woodrow

      Sub 600opd is pretty bad but who knows. ML pitchers are a lot better than Triple A. It’s the Ks that worry me,remember ID Davis that last year.

    • Brian Joura

      Tommy Pham has 81 PA and a .632 OPS. My expectation is that when Vientos has that many PA this year, he’ll exceed Pham’s mark.

  • David Groveman

    Guillorme was sent down.

  • Woodrow

    Escobar,Pham at DH,Vientos at third! What is Showalter thinking? Is this panic?

    • David Groveman

      Escobar has a slash line of .429/.467/.857 in his last 7 games and .282/.326/.590 over his last 15

      Baty has been scuffling a bit of late and there is a lefty on the mound.

      In my mind you start Alonso, Lindor, Nimmo, McNeil and Baty every game you can and you pray that Marte bounces back to belong on that list but I’m not managing the Mets.

  • Footballhead

    Wow; Pham as DH? I thought Vientos “sucked” as a fielder? So Buck puts a (near) rookie in a potentially embarrassing spotlight…., and remind me why Pham is still on this team? Where is Mauricio?

  • Metsense

    Last night’s the come from behind win just the thing that this team needed. Can they sustain the momentum and turn their season around?
    The starting pitchers need to have length. Scherzer, Verlander and Senga should provide that. Megill and Carrasco I’m not so sure.
    The power hitting department has struggled this year except Alonso. Alvarez and Vientos should help but they need to have the playing time.
    The hitting, in general, needs to improve also. Nido, Pham, Marte, Canha and Escobar are playing way below their career numbers. In the last week, Canha has shown some life and Escobar, for the last month, has really hit well (1.000+ OPS). Canha and Escobar would make good bench veterans. Something has to give. Mauricio and Gary Sanchez need to be promoted to supplement the hitting. Nido and a underperforming outfielder needs to be traded. Mauricio should be starting at second base and McNeil in the starting outfield. Baty should get the majority of the third base at bats. These changes would improve the lineup and the bench.
    The bullpen will be fine if the starters have length because the middle relief is suspect. The late innings relief is very good.
    I think that they can sustain their momentum and turn the season around with these changes and make it to the playoffs.

  • AgingBull

    What a great win last night. What an opportunity to regain some momentum and win a series from the hottest team in baseball. What a disappointment to see both Pham and Vogelbach in today’s lineup. Alvarez and Vientos made last night’s win happen. Let’s put them on the bench. Gotta give Pham enough ABs so that he can regain the form he’s not shown in several years. Why not Alvarez at DH, Vientos at 3B, and Baty in LF? At least Canha isn’t starting but how much do you wanna bet that he’s the first PH used today.
    I’ve been a Buck fan from the beginning and always defer to the expertise and information these people have over us fans, but c’mon dude. This lineup just doesn’t cut it.
    Sorry – had to vent.

    • deegrove84

      Let me suggest another view of Pham’s inclusion here. This could be the Mets getting their final proof that their plan to release Pham and bring up Mauricio is justified. Vientos and Vogelbach will split things regularly and you may see Vientos used off the bench this game.

      • AgingBull

        I like your scenario and hope that this is the plan!

  • Mike W

    Gary Sanchez – so, do the Mets call up Sanchez?

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