After a few years of working to bolster the farm system and build from within, the big league Mets may begin to reap the rewards of an influx of young position player talent in 2015. That's according to the team's assistant General Manager Paul DePodesta, who sat down with the Star-Ledger's Mike Vorkunov for a chat about the organization's minor league prospects.
While the current front office has had to point to the future for most of their tenure, DePodesta says that that future is finally set to arrive this year:
"You look at guys who at least could certainly be ready for Triple-A at some point in the course of this year just based on what they've done in the past. (Kevin) Plawecki and (Matt) Reynolds will both certainly be there. They finished the year there last year - most of the second half last year was in Triple-A. Dilson Herrera made the leap from Double-A straight to the big leagues. He certainly could play in Triple-A. Brandon Nimmo spent the second half of the season last year in Double-A. He could certainly be Triple-A ready. So those are four of our better guys."
Having a number of viable, young depth options at Triple-A only serves to make the big league Mets that much stronger. It's not only about what's at the top level of the farm, though. In speaking about how well the bottom rungs of the system are represented on Baseball America's team top 10 list, DePodesta says that the organization made it a point back in 2011 to focus on adding position player depth to an already strong base of pitching in the system.
"As we looked at it maybe 3-4 years ago, we felt we had some pitching. We certainly wanted to add to that pitching and make sure that continued to be a strength but we really wanted to focus on some position players. And we need we had to create another wave of players, not only through the draft but also through international signings."
When talking about that second wave of players, DePodesta specifically mentioned prospects like SS Amed Rosario and RHP Marcos Molina, both of whom are beginning to make a name for themselves on the national prospect scene.
With many prospect lists currently being released prior to the start of the season, DePodesta mentioned that the Mets don't rank their prospects like you would see on the internet. Instead, their internal evaluations focus on groups and categories based on potential outcomes for each of the players in the system.
"It's mainly based on what we think ultimately what their major league role is going to be. Whether or not we think they're going to be an everyday player, an above average major league player, or more role player, that type of thing.