After a very slow start to the season for Triple-A Syracuse — a start that has his overall numbers looking not so great — Acuña has been on fire.

He turned it on in May, and is coming off a June where he was tremendous.

In 24 games last month, Acuña hit .298/.348/.413.

Source: Danny Abriano, SNY

Context is everything. Raw numbers don’t come close to telling the whole story. If I told you that a guy in the majors had a .326/.392/.477 line, you’d think that was pretty good. But once you were provided some context – this line was produced by Jeff Cirillo for the Rockies at the height of the Silly Ball era in 2000 – you’d be less impressed. And that .869 OPS was only good for a 100 OPS+.

Now, NBT Bank Stadium isn’t exactly Coors Field and we’re not in the age of random guys hitting 50 home runs in a season. But no way on this earth is a .761 OPS for a guy playing in Syracuse in 2024 “tremendous.”

For some context, the team OPS for Syracuse this year is .797 or 36 points above what Luisangel Acuna is doing in this “tremendous” stretch of his. And not only does the team number include stats from multiple guys with no hopes of ever sniffing the majors, it also includes stats for the month of April, which is typically the worst-hitting month of the year. So, let’s look at Syracuse numbers for the month of June.

There were 15 hitters to get ABs in June for Syracuse and Acuna’s .761 OPS ranked 11th. If we look at the 10 hitters with the most ABs, Acuna ranks seventh. Syracuse as a team in the month of June posted a .278/.347/.491 line for an .838 OPS. Anyone who’s being honest with themselves would recognize that Acuna’s .761 OPS is miles from “tremendous” when looked at in the proper context.

Without a doubt, Acuna is playing better in June than he did in April. But that’s a pretty low bar to clear, as he was awful to start the year. And with his speed and defense, Acuna will bring value beyond his slash line. But the old wisdom – “you can’t steal first base” comes to mind here. Also, we have to factor in that Acuna had a .349 BABIP in the month of June. What happens when the hits stop falling in for him? He’s not really doing a whole bunch at the plate besides hitting singles. That is, unless a .115 ISO gets you excited. For a comparison, Tomas Nido had a .133 ISO for the Mets before he was DFAd.

We should all be happy that Acuna did better in June than he did in April. But when we look at what he did in June in its proper context – it’s underwhelming. Acuna is young for his level and we have to keep that in mind. But while that means it won’t be terrible if he has to spend two full years in Triple-A – it does not mean in any way, shape or form that he’s ready for the majors right now.

Saying that Acuna is ready for a promotion now – even with the extremely wishy-washy qualifier of “consider” – is talk that should make you walk away from the drunk at the bar who said it. That it’s coming from the lead writer at the most popular Mets site on the internet is enough to make a single tear roll down one’s cheek.

14 comments on “Dumb Idea Department: Mets should ‘consider’ promoting Luisangel Acuna

  • TexasGusCC

    Rule #1 when looking at SNY’s website: If it’s written by Danny Abriano, don’t read it or expect something ridiculous. How Acuna tore it up for the Rangers’ AA team, I don’t know. But, the Mets got him for a shell of a pitcher so I am not upset.

    • Metsense

      First off, the Mets don’t need another second baseman. McNeil and Iglesias are platooning and the Mets are winning. Acuna hot streak isn’t better than Iglesias nor is he better than Iglesias at this point of Acuna’s career. In 2025 the depth chart for minor league second baseman will likely be Williams, Mauricio and then Acuna.
      Acuna definitely doesn’t need a promotion and there is nothing to warrant it.

      • Metstabolism

        Another overstated Williams projection… There is simply zero basis for saying where Williams will be next year. But given the slow start at AA, coupled with missing most – close to all – of the season, its pretty fair to say that Acuna will start the season in AAA, and Williams in AA. Acuna is also already on the 40-man. Williams is not and there is no reason for him to be added at this point.

        • Metsense

          Fangraphs lists Williams and Mauricio better than Acuna.
          MLB lists Williams better than Acuna. That’s two more than “zero” so there is a basis that Williams maybe promoted sometime in 2025.
          The 40 man roster doesn’t have a bearing to your point. If they want to promote a prospect they can easily put them on the 40 man roster. Williams didn’t need to be protected for the Rule 5 draft so he wasn’t on the roster.

          • Metstabolism

            Well then, you misunderstand what these rankings are and what they mean… Everyone ranks Williams a higher than Acuna. Higher. Not better right now. The rankings is a reflection of the player’s tools and talent, and are based on what his ceiling is perceived to be… not his arrival date. And not his major league readiness at this point in time. Those tools still need to be developed.
            If you want to suggest that Williams will need less total time in AA and AAA than Acuna, you could be right. If you want to say that Williams will go on to a better career and a bigger role (like starter vs bench player), that would be in line with what the rankings are saying. But with Williams missing almost all of this season, Acuna has a nearly two year head start on him. To say that WIlliams is ahead of Acuna on the depth chart right now.
            And yes,Williams is not on eligible for Rule 5 yet. That means there is no reason to add him >>> until <<< he is ready. but rankings or not, there is nothing to say he is that close yet.

  • Metstabolism

    Nothing Danny Abriano writes about prospects has any credibility. He’s purely a sycophant, all about hyping and promoting them. And he clearly does not actually follow the minors, he just checks out the stats once a month or so.

  • Jimmy P

    Good piece. Fiesty but in a respectful way. Contextualizing those numbers was helpful.

    The other part of that idea is who do the Mets drop to make room for him?

    I hope Acuna develops. He’s a very small guy. I’m more concerned that he’s been a free-swinger and hasn’t been taking walks. That must change. When you are the little fast guy, your value is on the basepaths and with the glove.

    • Brian Joura

      Thanks for the kind words!

      My issue with Acuna has always been that people give him so much credit/slack because of his last name. If he was Luisangel Sanchez, people would rate him much more accurately. Instead, they talk about him being this five-tool talent. Like you said, his talent is being the little fast guy, which means he needs to maximize his OBP.

      Acuna’s age makes him a better prospect but he’s essentially Nick Morabito and no one is considering him for the majors.

  • boomboom

    My only nitpick is – he can’t be worse than McNeil could he? Thought McNeil was turning a corner with 2 or 3 nice games in a row with some solid at bats and swings, and then the 3 run homer, but he’s been putrid in the Washington series. Iglesias is already the better defender at 2b and his bat has been speaking for itself. If Bader were to go on the injured list, for example (hit on the forearm and then crashed into the wall), do you go with McNeil, Nimmo, Taylor in the OF? Or Nimmo, Acuna, Taylor? Not sure, honestly, which is better, but I know Acuna at least would bring a dynamic speed and energy to the team.

    • Metstabolism

      Can’t be worse than McNeil?? Did we forget Joey Wendle so soon? Or Zack Short, Danny Mendick, Jonathan Arauz….

  • TexasGusCC

    I just found out

    • TexasGusCC

      Oops. Sorry. That was supposed to be a text to a co-worker

  • Dan Capwell

    Acuna should be the headliner in any deal they make for a reliever this month. Baty and any minor league pitcher not named Sproat or Tong should also be offered up.

    The Mets are approaching a real crossroads of an offseason. If they do continue to play well and punch their ticket to the postseason dance, do they bring back some of the main authors of this turnaround (Pete, JDM, Severino, Bader, Houser, and Iglesias)? They’ll almost have to

    On the other hand, if they fall short, do they cut bait on those guys and perhaps look for new homes for some other players as well. In that case, they’ll need to go the same route they did this year with the short deals for vets looking to restore some luster to their names. At the risk of sounding like a broken record–and I know I am dating myself with that reference–the Mets can’t expect much from their farm next year, so the stopgap will be in place again.

    This hasn’t been broached in a long-time (at least since Lindor’s 2021 season), but not all players can hack playing in the Big Apple. Many on the current roster seem to have overcome that issue. So, if they do manage to qualify, bringing most of the team back next year should be considered, if for no other reason than that they have proven they can play here.

  • NYM6986

    Acuna has the chance to be a part of the Mets future, but clearly that should not be this season. If the Mets are out of it and they’d like to call them up as part of a September call up, which is severely limited from past years, have no issue with that. There is no one at this point who he should replace on the current roster. Many are mesmerized by his last name, but if we went just that we would think Jose Iglesias would be a great singer- oh wait he can sing
    I am not suggesting that he be moved in any trade line deal or even at the end of the season, but clearly he belongs at AAA even if it’s an extended stay

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