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Top 25 Mets Prospects for 2024: Joander Suarez (21)

Next on our list is a right-handed pitcher.

Amazin Avenue Prospect List

Name: Joander Suarez
Position: RHP
Born: 2/27/2000
Height: 6’3”
Weight: 250 lbs.
Bats/Throws: R/R
Acquired: IFA, May 14, 2018 (Cumana, Venezuela)

2023 Stats: 21 G (19 GS), 90.1 IP, 83 H, 59 R, 51 ER (5.08 ERA), 45 BB, 118 K, .344 BABIP (High-A)/3 G (3 GS), 18.0 IP, 3 H, 0 R, 0 ER (0.00 ERA), 4 BB, 19 K, .083 BABIP (Double-A)

Signed in May 2018 to a $10,000 bonus at the end of the 2017-2018 international signing period window, Joander Suarez played for the Mets’ Dominican Summer League teams that year, posting a combined 4.35 ERA in 20.2 innings split between their two teams. The Mets brought him stateside in 2019, assigning him to the GCL Mets, and the 19-year-old posted a 1.79 ERA in 40.1 innings, allowing 27 hits, walking 16, and striking out 47.

The 2020 season was a lost season for the right-hander as the COVID-19 pandemic forced the cancellation of the season, but 2021 was unfortunately another one for Suarez. He was promoted to St. Lucie to begin the year but made just six starts before landing on the injured list and eventually needing Tommy John surgery in June. He returned to the mound a year later in mid-2022 and threw 10.0 rehab innings in the Florida Complex League and 11.1 innings in the Florida State League.

The 23-year-old right-hander was assigned to the Brooklyn Cyclones to begin 2023, and it was a tale of two seasons for Suarez. On the whole, with the Cyclones, he posted a cumulative 5.08 ERA in 90.1 innings, allowing 83 hits, walking 45, and striking out 118, which ended up being fifth-most in the South Atlantic League. It took the right-hander a few months to get his pitching legs back under him. Through the beginning of July, Suarez posted a 6.70 ERA in 45.2 innings over 12 games, with 45 hits allowed, 34 walks, and 55 strikeouts. From July until the end of August, he appeared in 9 games and posted a 3.43 ERA in 44.2 innings, allowing 38 hits, walking 11, and striking out 63.

At the end of August, Suarez was promoted to Double-A Binghamton. In his first start, he threw six scoreless innings against the Harrisburg Senators. In his second start, he threw a rain-shortened seven-inning no-hitter against the Hartford Yard Goats. In his third and final start, he threw five scoreless innings against the Reading Fightin’ Phils. All in all, he posted a perfect 0.00 ERA in 18.0 innings, allowing 3 hits, walking 4, and striking out 19. For 2023, the right-hander posted a combined 4.24 ERA in 108.1 innings, allowing 86 hits, walking 49, and striking out 137, the fourth-most in the system in 2023.

Suarez’s 6’3”, 225-pound frame is well proportioned and athletic. He throws from a high-three-quarters arm slot with a long arm action through the back. His pitching mechanics are simple and repeatable. Before Tommy John surgery, Suarez’s fastball sat in the low-90s, touching 93, 94 MPH, and since then, it has shown no real regression, sitting in the low-to-mid-90s, touching 95 MPH with rise thanks to its spin rate.

The right-hander complements his fastball with a curveball and changeup. Prior to his Tommy John surgery, his curveball was little more than a get-me-over pitch, but since returning, he has refined the offering into his best secondary pitch, high-70s-to-80 MPH offering with big 12-6 drop that projects as an average pitch. His changeup also projects as an average pitch, sitting in the mid-to-high-80s and featuring late fade and tumble. Both pitches are still developing, as his curveball loses its shape and his changeup gets firm, and he has periodically struggled to throw both for strikes consistently.

2024 Mets Top 25 Prospects

22) Nathan Lavender
23) Boston Baro
24) Layonel Ovalles
25) Nolan McLean