The best Mets position prospects I saw this year: #10 L.J. Mazzilli

Jessica Rudman

The countdown of the best Mets prospects we saw in 2013 continues as we kick off our top ten bats with Brooklyn second baseman, LJ Mazzilli

Disclaimer (because someone will ask why a player I didn't see isn't on this list): This is a ranking of the best Mets prospects I saw in person this year. This is not a comprehensive Mets prospect list. I did not see Las Vegas, St. Lucie or the GCL team this year. If a player is not on the list, it is most likely because I did not see him. Otherwise, all rankings are consistent with how I would order the players within the Mets system. Oh yeah, and I am not a scout.

10. LJ Mazzilli, 2B

6'0", 190 lbs

Bats/Throws: R/R

Age: (as of Opening Day 2014) 23.6

Acquired: 4th round, 2013

2013: 301 PA, .278/.329/.381, 53 K, 22 BB for Brooklyn (SS-A)

Date(s) seen: 7/7/13 vs. Lowell Spinners (BOS)

8/24/13 and 8/25/13 @ Vermont Lake Monsters (OAK)

The short of it: You want grission? Mazzilli has grission (also excellent cheekbones).

The long of it: I am willing to bet Mazzilli will get every ounce out of his tools, just don't know that there are enough tools here to make a major leaguer. Like the swing, short leg kick, high hands, quick and direct to the ball. Hard to see much more than gap power though, and he will cheat and start his hands early at times to make up for bat speed deficiencies. Can turn on inside fastballs in the Penn League, but I don't know if that will work as well against better stuff. Fringe-average runner, but smart on the bases. Fluid in the field, but arm probably limits him to the right side of the infield. Justin Turner is a lazy comp, but there are some similarities.

The projection: Utility infielder

Risk Factor: Medium-High. Polished baseball skills, but no track record in full season ball, athletic tools are a little short, was an older college guy against younger competition.

What’s next: I figured that the Mets would put Mazzilli on the Muno track and skip him to St. Lucie, but the trade for Dilson Herrera complicated things. Then again, they stuck Plawecki in Savannah for half a season, so maybe they will do that for Mazzilli as well.

What I'll be looking for in 2014: I expect that Mazzilli will handle full-season ball without too many problems. K-rate is worth watching, as he should see better breaking balls in the South Atlantic League, and like Turner, the hit tool will have to carry him.

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