ESPN's Adam Rubin recently caught up with Mets Farm Director Paul DePodesta for what he billed as a 'state of the farm' interview. For those of us Mets prospect watchers, he did not disappoint. This was an excellent, highly in-depth look at some of the more interesting questions throughout the Mets farm system.
DePo hit on all phases, from guys currently contributing to the big league club all the way down to recent international signings who are still playing overseas. In short, if you want a good read on how the front office values many of the top players in the system -- with a surprisingly limited amount of close-to-the-vest nebulousness -- you'll want to read this interview.
Below you'll find snippets of some of the more interesting points from their chat:
"A guy like (right-hander) Jeurys Familia, he has a chance to be a big-time guy, and probably hasn’t gotten at least that type of attention...We moved Familia to Double-A before Harvey. Certainly part of that was for development reasons. He was just ready earlier. But I don’t know why his ceiling is different than those guys. He throws just as hard. He’s got a good slider. He’s generally in the zone. He’s awfully good too."
I felt the same way after our recent, lopsided poll...
Free Satin! Wait, they actually like him?
"I think at the Double-A level, a lot of the guys we had there weren’t necessarily ready to come here. But (infielder) Josh Satin had a terrific year and is now in Triple-A and hasn’t missed a beat...I think he’s a guy who can contribute here."
So much for him not being a 'DePo Guy'...
Possible 2012 Bullpen Support
"Both (right-handers Brad) Holt and (Josh) Stinson I think have pitched well now that they have been moved to the pen, which we all think is their ultimate roles...sometimes those guys can really come quick, because if they have the stuff, and they have the command, it almost doesn’t matter if it’s in A-ball or Double-A or in the big leagues. It plays and will continue to play at each level....In that respect, we’ll see what Stinson is able to do and we’ll see what Holt is able to do as they continue to adjust to that role. One other guy, and I hesitate to say it, because it’s a long way away, is Josh Edgin. He’s a left-handed reliever currently in St. Lucie. He started the year in Savannah. But he’s got major league stuff and he’s left-handed. Again, you just never know how quickly those guys can come."
Interesting to hear him confirm Holt's long-term move to the bullpen. I like the Stinson move -- as you've probably guessed -- and it's good to see they'll be aggressive with guys like Edgin who deserve it. I'm guessing Moore's the next one to make the transition.
Flores can play Little League Infield?
"I think with any of these guys, when we’ve considered position changes, it will be well-discussed. We have talked about it with (Wilmer Flores) at different times...We do think that the next move...and I think it’s probably likely at some point, it will be in the infield....He’s played some third in winter ball. There’s been some talk about second base. We’ll discuss this as we sort of wind down the season and head into the offseason. I think we feel like regardless his time at short has been well-spent, and will continue to be well-spent if he continues to stay there. To his credit, he’s really played it well."
I continue to expect a move to third for Flores.
Valdespin, Officially On the Radar
"(Middle infielder) Jordany Valdespin had a great year, and has actually played shortstop extremely well and has gotten better month after month and is now, I think, absolutely a viable major league shortstop...and one thing I think we feel strongly about organizationally, is that one of the things that improves dramatically with repetitions is infield defense...there are just a lot of stories of guys who made 30, 40, even 50 errors in the minor leagues and went on to become very solid defensive infielders in the major leagues."
Interesting Pitching Talent at the Lower Levels
Maybe this time next year we’ll be talking about (second-round pick) Cory Mazzoni...or (44th overall pick Michael)Fulmer right behind those guys...We’ve actually got a lot of good arms in short season that were here before I got here that are young, young kids, but with power arms and have a chance to come quickly. Guys like (U.S. Virgin Islands native) Akeel Morris, Miller Diaz, Domingo Tapia, there are a handful of them....Rafael Montero is a right-handed pitcher. He’s a little older....But he has a good arm, a good feel and it’s a legitimate three-pitch mix. It’s low- to mid-90s. Good body. Good command. He’s an interesting package....There’s another pitcher named Luis Mateo, who is also a little older. He’s 21. He has really good power stuff."
Interesting to hear that Tapia is regularly hitting 100 mph. We recently discussed both Mateo and Montero as guys putting up crazy numbers in the DSL. A little odd that he didn't mention Urbina.
To fill in the rest of the gaps, read the rest of Rubin's story here.