Despite the fact that it seems changes are imminent, Baseball America released their Mets top ten prospect ranking for 2013 yesterday -- as ranked by BA's Matt Eddy. The list goes as follows:
|1.||Zack Wheeler, rhp|
|2.||Gavin Cecchini, ss|
|3.||Brandon Nimmo, of|
|4.||Luis Mateo, rhp|
|5.||Rafael Montero, rhp|
|6.||Wilmer Flores, 3b/2b|
|7.||Michael Fulmer, rhp|
|8.||Jeurys Familia, rhp|
|9.||Domingo Tapia, rhp|
Cory Mazzoni, rhp
It's certainly an interesting list. Definitely not without it's conversation pieces.
My initial reactions:
- What first caught my eye was how low -- relatively speaking -- they placed Wilmer Flores despite his big 2012 in Double-A. Obviously they're dinging him for the lack of any positional value -- which I get -- I'm just not sure I buy one of the handful of best bats in all of minor league baseball as the third-best positional prospect in the Mets farm system. I don't get the continued apprehension about his power either; he's a big kid who was projected to grow into it -- and did in 2012.
- 1A, Luis Mateo at no. 4? Wow, I'm higher on Mateo than most and this is ambitious even for me. I guess it just goes back to what I've been saying in Mateo's defense: The guy already has a top 5 fastball in the system and a potentially plus, razor slider. And despite the advanced age (22) he's still got less than 150 pro innings under his belt. His change-up has a loooong way to go if he's going to start in the majors but it's not as if the development clock runs out at 23.
- I'm still not set on exactly where Montero fits in for me, but I have to say I don't dislike the ranking at no. 5. Though even at 7 I feel like Fulmer isn't getting full due for the debut season he just had at age 19. I mean there's a decent shot he's taking Wheeler's place atop the system at this time next year. Don't know if I feel comfortable saying the same about Montero. I'd likely switch those two.
- One I'd really love to hear an explanation about is Mazzoni in the top ten. I know the good velocity was still there and he repeats his delivery exceptionally well -- hence the very good command. But his results in 2012 still were just not very good. And not in the way that you can feel ok about; a mid-6 strikeouts per nine for a guy who's hitting the mid-90's is a bad sign. I like him as a fast-moving late reliever should he move to the 'pen, but I'm not sure that's a top ten profile -- at least not before the barn door opens. I'd have at least 3-4 guys I'd slot there before even thinking about Mazzoni.
But enough out of me, what are your thoughts?
*NOTE - For anyone wondering, percolations are imminent on the 2013 AA Top 50. However, don't expect a finalized product too soon with the face of the Mets farm system currently in flux...