Please note: This article was written before/during the games played on June 29th, 2013, and all statistics are through games played on June 28th.
Hello there, new people. For those who don’t know, I’m Tejesh Patel, the co-founder and writer for MetsProspectHub, where I post daily minor league reports, occasional commentary, and daily Gameday Links for every level in our system. I’ve agreed to do minor league recaps for The Daily Stache for the remainder of this season, so here goes.
The hottest team in the system, and one of the best in minor league ball, we have the Binghamton Mets, who are 48-28, 9 games up on second place Trenton (about to be 8 as they are playing as I am writing this, Binghamton trails 3-2 top 7 in Game 1 of a doubleheader). Managed by Pedro Lopez, the Mets haven’t been very prospect laden, more relying on AA veterans Allan Dykstra (.318/.477/.601/1.078) and Josh Rodriguez (.306/.432/.440/.872) to carry their offense.
However, probably the biggest, best, and most important breakout in the entire minor league system has occurred in Binghamton, under the watch of hitting coach Luis Natera, and that is the sustained breakout of outfield prospect Cesar Puello, who is rocking a line of .335/.402/.606/1.009 coming into today’s play (6/29/13).
Puello, who has long been a toolshed who never put it together, is doing just that this season. He has already set a career high in HRs with 14 (4 better than his 2011 season in the FSL where he hit 10 in 441 ABs).
In comparing Puello’s 4 seasons in fullseason ball, this season, he has the second lowest strikeout rate of his career (20.33%), the second highest walkrate of his career (6.03%), and easily the highest XBHAVG (SLG minus singles), and IsoP (isolated power, SLG-AVG) of his career.
His highest plate discipline marks came in his age 19 season with Savannah, with a 17.9% Krate and a 7.51% walk rate, but with no power, a 67 IsoP and .126 XBHAVG. I would conclude therefore that the breakout is real, but he still needs to work on his approach and discipline, as a 6% walk rate is still pretty poor. However, he’s just 22 years old, so time is very much on his side.
Other semi-prospects (offensively) in Binghamton include Cory Vaughn, who, when health has been solid, hitting .288/.370/.447/.817 with a 19/48 BB/K in 170 ABs, 7 2b and 6 HRs, however, we have not heard word on his elbow, and there exists a possibility he needs TJS.
I’ll mention him more in the St. Lucie overview, but Travis Taijeron was hitting .250/.311/.643/.954 coming into play today for Binghamton with 4 2b and 6 HR, providing a huge spark in the outfield as well. Binghamton is second in the Eastern League in runs scored with 385 in 76 games (5.06 per game) trailing only Bowie, they are also second in team OPS with a .262/.348/.406/.754 team slash line, again trailing Bowie.
Pitching is where the BMets have been excellent, they have the second best staff ERA in the EL at 3.70, have walked the second fewest, struck out the second most, and allowed the second fewest hits in the league, leading a 1.31 WHIP, second in the league to Harrisburg.
Oh, they’ve also allowed the second fewest HRs in the EL (47), and roughly 1/3 of those are courtesy Logan Verrett, who allowed another today in Binghamton’s 4-2 loss during Game 1 of their doubleheader. Unquestionably, they were being led by Rafael Montero, who is MPHs #4 prospect. Montero, before being permanently promoted to Las Vegas, was pitching to a 2.43 era/1.88 FIP in AA, with a 10/72 BB/K ratio in 66.2 innings, and a WHIP of 0.91.
The BMets have also received solid pitching from others. Logan Verrett (8-3, 3.97, 93 ip, 83 h, 21/77 bb/k, 1.12 WHIP), Erik Goeddel (7-2, 3.72, 77.1 ip, 74 h, 28/76 bb/k, 1.32 WHIP), and Cory Mazzoni (4-2, 4.04, 55.2 ip, 58 h, 15/64 bb/k, 1.31 WHIP) have all made solid contributions in the Mets rotation.
Also in Binghamton’s rotation now is MPHs #2 prospect, Noah Syndergaard, who had a great first start in AA, and looks to build on that tomorrow. The Mets bullpen has been special, starting with the-now-in-AAA Jack Leathersich, who departed Binghamton with a 1.53 era and an absurd 55 Ks in 29.1 innings.
Jeff Walters, their closer, has a 2.51 era in 32.1 innings with an 11/34 bb/k and a 1.11 WHIP. Adam Kolarek and Chase Huchingson, two lefties, have 1.51 and 2.15 eras respectively.
In Binghamton, the move is simple, drop Mark Cohoon from the rotation, insert Matt Bowman. I would also like to see, and we will see after the AA ASG, Cesar Puello and Allan Dykstra promoted to AAA Las Vegas.
Don’t forget to check out my own site for daily minor league recaps and minor league Gameday links, www.metsprospecthub.com.