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Mets Minor League Players of the Week: Week Twenty Two

What minor league players put up the best numbers this past week, August 29th to September 3rd?

Daniel Palka
Steve Sypa

Daniel Palka

Week: 6 G, 22 AB, .364/.417/.864, 8 H, 2 2B, 0 3B, 3 HR, 2 BB, 5 K, 0/0 SB (Triple-A)

2023 Season: 6 G, 22 AB, .364/.417/.864, 8 H, 2 2B, 0 3B, 3 HR, 2 BB, 5 K, 0/0 SB, .357 BABIP (Triple-A)

After hitting an underwhelming .233/.309/.410 in 79 games for the Wooster Red Sox, Daniel Palka was released at the end of July. He signed with the Mets on August 26th and added to the Syracuse roster the next day. He got into his first game with them on the 29th, their first game against the Lehigh Valley Iron Pigs and proceeded to reintroduce himself to Mets fans- he played for Syracuse last year- by going 8-22 with three home runs. The burly slugger spent the majority out of baseball after he was released by the Worcester, but the last time he had 8 hits in a series was way back in early May, when he went 8-23 against the Buffalo Bisons and at no point this season has he hit three homers in a single series.

Palka hit .263/.344/.506 with 26 home runs in 109 games last season, and he can add 8 more hits, two doubles, and three home runs to that tally. Clearly, the man likes playing in the Salt City.

Douglas Orellana

Week: 1 G (1 GS), 6.2 IP, 2 H, 0 R, 0 ER, 1 BB, 8 K (Single-A)

2023 Season: 22 G (18 GS), 85.1 IP, 71 H, 49 R, 44 ER (4.64 ERA), 49 BB, 104 K, .295 BABIP (Single-A)

Joander Suarez

Week: 1 G (1 GS), 6.0 IP, 0 H, 0 R, 0 ER, 1 BB, 6 K (Double-A)

2023 Season: 21 G (19 GS), 90.1 IP, 83 H, 59 R, 51 ER (5.08 ERA), 45 BB, 118 K, .344 BABIP (High-A)/ 1 G (1 GS), 6.0 IP, 0 H, 0 R, 0 ER, 1 BB, 6 K, .000 BABIP (Double-A)

Saying that Douglas Orellana a Jekyll-and-Hyde season would not be accurate, but there are times when the right-hander looks very good and other times when he does not. This past week, the right-hander was on, throwing a career-high 6.2 innings and striking out a career-high 8 batters.

At this point, there does not seem to be much rhyme or reason as to why Orellana has struggled in certain starts and shined in others. With the exception of one successful outing, his pitch usage in his good starts reflect the same patterns in all of his other starts. The velocity bands of his pitches have all been the same. The spin rates of his pitches have all been the same. The strength of competition ranges from sub-.500 teams to above-.500 teams, so that is not an explanation either.

Sometimes guys are just feeling it more than other days, I guess.

The same can be said about Joander Suarez. On the whole, his 2023 season hasn’t exactly been masterful or anything, but at times, he has looked pretty good. That was the certainly the case on Thursday, when he made his first Double-A start and blanked the Harrisburg Senators for six no-hit innings, allowing a single baserunner on a walk. When he has his curveball and changeup working and is able to locate them, Suarez has three solid average pitches to work with, three pitches that register their fair share of strikeouts. He isn’t always able to do so, as evidenced by his 4.5 BB/9 rate this season with Brooklyn, but when he is, he can be extremely effective. The right-hander struggled in that regard early on, but since midseason, he has really righted the ship. In his first eleven appearances, from April 12 until June 20, he has a 6.85 ERA in 44.2 innings, with 45 hits, 34 walks allowed, and 55 strikeouts. In eleven appearances since then, Suarez has a 2.96 ERA in 51.2 innings, with 38 hits allowed, 12 walks, and 69 strikeouts.

Players of the Week 2023

Week One (April 4-April 9): Ronny Mauricio/Jose Butto
Week Two (April 11-April 16): Ronny Mauricio/Joey Lucchesi
Week Three (April 18-April 23): Mark Vientos/Jordan Geber
Week Four (April 25-April 30): Mark Vientos/Nathan Lavender
Week Five (May 2-May 7): DJ Stewart/Mike Vasil
Week Six (May 9-May 14): Jose Peroza/Mike Vasil
Week Seven (May 16-May 21): Matt Rudick/David Peterson
Week Eight (May 23-May 28): DJ Stewart/Jose Chacin
Week Nine (May 29-June 4): Luke Ritter/Layonel Ovalles
Week Ten (June 5-June 11): Luke Ritter/Douglas Orellana
Week Eleven (June 12-June 18): Luke Voit/Joey Lucchesi
Week Twelve (June 19-June 25): Kevin Parada/Tyler Stuart
Week Thirteen (June 26-July 3): Jonathan Arauz/Blade Tidwell
Week Fourteen (July 4-July 9): Jefrey De Los Santos/Dominic Hamel
Week Fifteen (July 13-July 16): Abraham Almonte/Felipe De La Cruz
Week Sixteen (July 17-July 23): Stanley Consuegra/Christian Scott
Week Seventeen (July 24-July 30): Luke Voit/ Dominic Hamel
Week Eighteen (July 31-August 6): JT Schwartz/Tyler Stuart
Week Nineteen (August 7-August 13): Ronny Mauricio/Mike Vasil
Week Twenty (August 14-August 20): Jett Williams/Felipe De La Cruz
Week Twenty One (August 21-August 27): Ronny Mauricio/Tyler Stuart & Joander Suarez