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Corey Oswalt gives the 2018 Mets additional pitching depth

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Can the 2017 Mets Minor League Pitcher of the Year make an impact in the majors in 2018?

MLB: New York Mets-Media Day
Corey Taylor
Steve Mitchell-USA TODAY Sports

Despite being scouted by San Diego native Paul DePodesta himself and signing overslot out of Madison High School in the 7th round of the 2012 MLB Draft, Corey Oswalt has spent most of his minor league career flying under the radar. In addition to learning on the job, as the right-hander transitioned to the mound from the infield during his senior year to boost his draft stock, Oswalt spent a number of his earlier years in the organization dealing with various injuries. This past season, Oswalt finally broke through his glass ceiling, fully healthy and confident in his abilities as a pitcher. As the bulldog ace for the Binghamton Rumble Ponies, he posted a 2.28 ERA in 134.1 innings, allowing 118 hits, walking 40, and striking out 119.

Oswalt’s fastball sits roughly 88-93 MPH, with life and sink when he is able to fully extend his arm. The right-hander is still a bit inconsistent in that regard, and the pitch has a tendency to leak back over the plate as a result. He complements it with a slider and a changeup, both of which are currently fringe pitches that flash average. The slider, which sits in the low-to-mid 80s, has shallow break, and the changeup, which also sits in the mid-80s, lacks much fade or fastball velocity separation.

Despite the excellent numbers in 2017, Corey Oswalt still has an upward battle ahead of him. The lack of above-average stuff will give him very little margin of error against the upper echelon of hitters. Having spent the past season at Double-A Binghamton, Oswalt should begin the 2018 season with the Mets Triple-A affiliate, the Las Vegas 51s. While the Mets still have some pitching depth in front of Oswalt that has some degree of major league experience, should those pitchers be unavailable, Oswalt will likely be the first man to get the call to Queens.