Name: Ryley Gilliam
Weight: 170 lbs.
Acquired: 2018 MLB Draft, 5th Round (Clemson University)
Ryley Gilliam lettered four times while playing baseball at Kennesaw Mountain High School, but went undrafted, partially due to his size and partially because of his commitment to Clemson University. He attended Clemson and made their baseball team, pitching as a starter and reliever as a freshman. In his first year there, he was fairly unimpressive, posting a 6.10 ERA in 31.0 innings, allowing 26 hits, walking 18, and striking out 16. He pitched completely out of the bullpen as a sophomore and his numbers got dramatically better. In 35.0 innings, Gilliam posted a 2.57 ERA, allowing 29 hits, walking 14, and striking out 50, notching 4 saves in the process. By his junior year, the right-hander had a firm grasp of the Tigers’ closer position. In 2018, he proved to be one of the best closers in all of college baseball. Through 36.0 innings, he posted a 1.41 ERA, allowing 22 hits, walking 22, and striking out 54, notching 11 saves in the process. He was selected by the Mets in the 5th round in the 2018 MLB Draft and the two sides agreed to a $550,000 signing bonus. He was assigned to the Brooklyn Cyclones for the remainder of the 2018 season and posted a 2.08 ERA in 17.0 innings there, allowing 11 hits, walking 13, and striking out 31. He began the 2019 season with the St. Lucie Mets, but by the time the season ended, was pitching with the Syracuse Mets. He was effective in High-A, was less effective in Double-A, and was shelled in limited innings in Triple-A. All in all, he posted a 6.05 ERA in 38.2 innings at all three levels, allowing 42 hits, walking 18, and striking out 56.
Gilliam is only 5’10”, leading to concerns about durability on a per appearance and entire season basis. He is athletic, but his delivery is violent and high-energy. He throws from a three-quarters arm slot, generating velocity from a compact, electric arm. The high-tempo delivery generates velocity, but it comes at the expense of command, as Gilliam often has trouble throwing strikes, though he generally is able to more often than not.
Throwing from a high-three-quarters arm slot, Gilliam’s fastball hovers in the low-to-mid 90s, sitting 91-94 MPH. It has some arm-side life to it owing to his arm slot, but because of his own size, the pitch does not have much plane to it. He has better command of the pitch out of the stretch than in the windup, as the abbreviated mechanics help cut down on ways he can become unbalanced and lose his release point. Gilliam complements his fastball with a curveball and a changeup. His curve is an above-average pitch, sitting in the high-70s with 12-6 break. The pitch has tight rotation and plenty of late break, eliciting plenty of swing-and-misses. He is confident with the pitch, and regularly doubles or even triples down on the pitch when he sees the need to. A holdover from his days as a starter, his changeup is also an effective pitch, as is the cutter that he began using in 2018, but he does not throw either pitch much, instead sticking with his fastball/curveball combination.
Name: Jordany Ventura
Weight: 160 lbs.
Acquired: IFA, July 25, 2018 (Santo Domingo, Dominican Republic)
Jordany Ventura was signed out of the Dominican Republic on July 25, 2018 for $20,000 and made his professional debut a few weeks later, getting assigned to the DSL Mets. The 17-year-old appeared in just three games that year, and his professional career began in earnest in 2019. He began the season on the DSL squad, but for a second season, his time there was extremely limited, as he made just four starts before being promoted to the GSL Mets. He spent the majority of the summer at the complex and posted a 4.36 ERA in 33.0 innings, allowing 27 hits, walking 8, and striking out 34. At the end of August, he was promoted to the Kingsport Mets in order to fortify their rotation and appeared in two games with them, giving up one earned run in 8 innings while allowing 3 hits, walking 6, and striking out 9.
Ventura is a lanky 6’, 160-pounder and as suggested by his broad shoulders, he may still be growing. Throwing from a high three-quarters arm slot with a simple, repeatable motion, the right-hander has average-to-above-average command. His fastball currently sits in the low-90s with a bit of cutting action. In addition, he throws an upper-70s curveball and a developing changeup. The curve is the more advanced of the two, with 11-5 shape and sharp bite. While the changeup lags behind, it already has potential as a usable pitch as it occasionally shows good tumble.
Name: Endy Rodriguez
Weight: 170 lbs.
Acquired: IFA, July 2, 2018 (Santiago, Dominican Republic)
The Mets signed Endy Rodriguez on the very first day of the 2018-2019 international signing period, inking him to a deal with a signing bonus worth less than $10,000. He was assigned to the Dominican Summer League a few weeks later, where he combined to hit .261/.369/.400 in 35 games for both the Mets squadrons. He began the 2019 season in the DSL, but was promoted to the GCL Mets after appearing in 12 games and hitting .296/.457/.667 with four doubles and two homers. He appeared in 31 games for them at the complex, losing roughly a month of the season from the beginning July to the beginning of August thanks to a hamstring strain. All in all, the 19-year-old catcher hit .294/.411/.510, hitting .343/.455/.486 in 11 games before the injury and .250/.333/.425 in 11 games after it.
The switch-hitting Rodriguez stands open at the plate, wrapping his bat behind his head with his hands held high. He swings with a pronounced leg kick and has shown an advanced feel for making good contact, showing the ability to hit to all fields with authority from both sides of the plate. He drives the ball better from the left side than the right, but as is the case with young switch hitters, platoon splits and trends often change as the batter becomes more experienced. Most evaluators agree that Rodriguez will always be a hit-over-power player but will grow into usable in-game power.
An athletic 6’, 170-pound frame, Rodriguez has logged playing time at first base and in the outfield in addition to behind the dish, but given his catching prowess, should be given every opportunity to continue developing behind the plate. He has been praised for his defensive abilities, showing a lot of mobility and excelling at receiving and throwing. Should he be moved off of the position for whatever reason, he runs well enough and shows enough range to play a corner outfield position and has the receiving abilities to play first base.
Name: Stanley Consuegra
Weight: 170 lbs.
Acquired: IFA, July 2, 2017 (Santo Domingo, Dominican Republic)
Signed out of the Dominican Republic for $500,000, Stanly Consuegra was one of the better quick-twitch athletes in the 2017-2018 international free agent class. He began the season in the Dominican Summer League but impressed enough organizational evaluators to promoted him to the GCL Mets after only a few weeks. While Consuegra didn’t exactly dominate in his stateside debut, he held his own as a 17-year-old, posting an 84 wRC+. He entered the 2019 season with a knee injury and eventually had surgery on it, ending his season before he was able to play in a single game.
At 6’2”, 170 pounds, Consuegra has a long, projectable frame. His swing gets deep, but he has strong wrists and displays excellent barrel control, allowing him to make a lot of contact. His contact is currently line drive loud, but with more muscle, he should add additional in-game power. Like many young Dominicans, he played as a shortstop and was initially billed as being one, but has since transitioned to playing the outfield. Thanks to quick reaction times and average speed, Consuegra covers a lot of ground. Because of his history as a shortstop, he possesses a very strong throwing arm, with evaluators ranging from above-average to plus. If he is able to improve on his reactions off the bat and routes, Consuegra may be able to play center, but if he is not, his arm is strong enough to fit in right.
Name: Adrian Hernandez
Weight: 210 lbs.
Acquired: IFA, July 2, 2017 (Santo Domingo, Dominican Republic)
Considered one of the better players to be available during the 2017-2018 international signing period, Dominican outfielder Adrian Hernandez was signed in July 2017 by the Mets and given a $1.5 million signing bonus. He made his professional debut in 2018, playing 63 games for the Mets’ Dominican Summer League team. In those 63 games, he hit .261/.351/.386, slugging 5 home runs, stealing 9 bases in 14 attempts, and walking 17 times to 52 strikeouts. He was sent stateside, assigned to the GCL Mets for the 2019 season, but only appeared in four games before injuring his leg and missing the rest of the season.
Standing 5’9” and weighing 210 lbs., Hernandez is built like a running back and his profile centers around that strength. His bat speed, which was considered among the best in the 2017-2018 international rookie class, is explosive. When combined with his physical strength, Hernandez boasts plus raw power. His ability to hit is currently raw, with a swing that has too much of an uppercut and moves out of the zone too quickly, and a shows a vulnerability to spin. Once his pitch recognition and barrel control develop further, and his hit tool improve, the outfielder could develop above-average to plus in-game power as well.
In the outfield, Hernandez is equally raw. He has above-average speed and can turn the afterburners on very quickly, but his ability to read the ball off the bat and run the most efficient routes are still developing. His arm is only average, but if he is able to stay in center field, a non-plus arm strength can be minimized. Evaluators are split as to whether or not he will be able to stay in center, as his developing frame may put on enough weight that he loses the necessary speed and range to handle the position.