We rank the Mets' top position prospects at each position from the Rookie League to Triple-A. The prospects are ranked in reverse order and each player's estimated arrival in the majors is listed, as well as a scouting report. Pictures are above each prospect, unless otherwise indicated.
25. EUDY PINA, RF, St. Lucie (A+) (6-3, 188) (not pictured)
BORN: April 12, 1991 | DRAFTED: Non-drafted free agent (2008) | BATS: R
BEST OUTCOME: Bench bat
Eudy Pina has average pop — 48 doubles and 19 home runs since 2013, all at Single-A. But his plate discipline needs work. He strikes out 2.6 times for every walk, and strikes out in 23.7 percent of his plate appearances overall. His first five seasons, Pina showed the makings of an excellent base stealer (91-for-117) but was just 5-for-11 in 2014.
24. IVAN WILSON, CF, Kingsport (Rk) (6-3, 220) (left)
BORN: May 26, 1995 | DRAFTED: 3rd round (2013) | BATS: R
BEST OUTCOME: Starting centerfielder
Baseball America called Ivan Wilson the best power hitter in the Mets’ 2013 draft class, even after he posted just a .300 slugging percentage in 47 games in the Gulf Coast League in 2013. Wilson moved to Kingsport in 2014 and that power started to show itself. In 58 games, Wilson hit 11 home runs and 17 of his 33 hits went for extra-bases. Still, he only batted .176 and struck out 99 times in 58 games. BA also selected Wilson as being the best athlete among the 2013 Mets draftees. He’s stolen 17 bases in 19 attempts.
23. BRANDON BROSHER, C/LF, Kingsport (Rk) (6-3, 225) (not pictured) BORN: Feb. 17, 1995 | DRAFTED: 36th round (2013) | BATS: R
BEST OUTCOME: Starting leftfielder
Baseball America praises Brandon Brosher’s raw power, though he may not have the defensive skills to stick at catcher. Brosher made his pro debut with the Gulf Coast League Mets in 2013, smashing three home runs and a double among his 11 hits in 22 games. In seven games with Kingsport in 2014, Brosher recorded 12 hits – including four home runs. But a broken right fibula ended his season.
22. VICTOR CRUZADO, RF, Savannah (A) (5-11, 178)
BORN: June 3, 1992 | DRAFTED: Non-drafted free agent (2012) | BATS: S
BEST OUTCOME: Fourth outfielder
Victor Cruzado has a superb 14.6 percent career walk rate and a .382 OBP. He played in 145 games in 2014, the first season he played more than 46. Cruzado hit .273 with 27 extra-base hits, showing decent pop for the South Atlantic League. He’s shown good skills batting from both sides of the plate but struggled against lefthanded pitching in 2014, hitting .214 with a .291 OBP.
Amed Rosario is the type of player who seduces scouts with his tools and potential. A dynamic defender, he has reportedly yet to display the kind of steadiness that would allow him to stick at shortstop as he reaches higher levels of the minor leagues.
19. WILFREDO TOVAR, 2B/SS, Binghamton (AA) (5-10, 180)
BORN: Aug. 11, 1991 | DRAFTED: Non-drafted free agent (2008) | BATS: R
BEST OUTCOME: Utility infielder
Considered one of – if not THE – best defensive infielders in the Mets’ system, Wilfredo Tovar has already seen limited time in the majors and is probably defensively capable of serving as a utility infielder right now. His bat is another story. Tovar is a career .260 hitter with a .324 OBP and 11 home runs in 662 minor league games. Baseball America is particularly cutting in their evaluation of his skills: “He’s a below-average hitter with practically zero power who will get the bat knocked out of his hands by the pitching elite.”
18. KYLE JOHNSON, LF/CF, Binghamton (AA) (6-0, 180)
BORN: Nov. 9, 1989 | DRAFTED: 25th round (2012) | BATS: R
BEST OUTCOME: Platoon/fourth outfielder
The Mets acquired Kyle Johnson in the trade that sent Collin Cowgill to the Angels. He doesn’t have much power (career .388 slugging percentage) and his lifetime .277 average is just that – average. But he has a career .367 OBP and has been particularly tough on lefthanded pitchers. In 2014, he batted .250 with a .321 OBP vs. righthanders and .277 with a .386 OBP vs. southpaws.
17. CORY VAUGHN, RF, Las Vegas (AAA) (6-3, 235)
BORN: May 1, 1989 | DRAFTED: 4th round (2010) | BATS: R
BEST OUTCOME: Bench bat
The Minor League Baseball Analyst notes that Cory Vaughn’s swing can get long and he struggles against offspeed pitches. That hole has been exploited as he’s advanced through the minors. He hit .210 between Double-A and Triple-A in 2014 and has a career .250 average. Vaughn has a good eye (career .351 OBP) and has slugged double-digit home runs in each of his five seasons.
16. DANIEL MUNO, INF, Las Vegas (AAA) (5-11, 190)
BORN: Feb. 9, 1989 | DRAFTED: 8th round (2011) | BATS: S
BEST OUTCOME: Role player
Daniel Muno has advanced one full level every year since 2012, and he’s kept the same basic offensive profile while doing so – great plate discipline with passable power. In 384 minor-league games, he has 245 walks to 271 strikeouts and a .395 OBP. His .276 career average and .419 career slugging percentage are nothing special, but they play for a middle infielder. He had great success stealing bases in 2012, going 19-for-22. But he’s just 24-for-40 since. He played 69 games at second base, 24 at third base and 21 at short in 2014.
14. CESAR PUELLO, LF/RF, Las Vegas (AAA) (6-2, 220)
BORN: April 1, 1991 | DRAFTED: Non-drafted free agent (2007) | BATS: R
BEST OUTCOME: Platoon outfielder
Hamstring and wrist injuries limited him in 2012, but Cesar Puello put together what looked to be a breakout campaign in 2013, batting .326 with a .403 on-base percentage and 16 home runs by early August. As Puello was opening some eyes, however, Major League Baseball had its eye on Puello, and the slugging outfielder was suspended 50 games for his involvement with performance-enhancing drugs as part of the Biogenesis investigation. The Mets promoted him to Triple-A Las Vegas, a hitting heaven, at the start of the 2014 season. But Puello’s power, and overall production, was lacking. He hit .252 with a .355 OBP and .393 slugging percentage in 105 games. Puello did do damage against lefthanders, however, hitting .312 with a .409 OBP and .532 slugging percentage in 109 at-bats. His success against southpaws is a career trend.
13. JAYCE BOYD, 1B, Binghamton (AA) (6-3, 185)
BORN: Dec. 30, 1990 | DRAFTED: 6th round (2012) | BATS: R
BEST OUTCOME: Bench bat
A very good defender, Boyd also appears to practice the organizational hitting philosophy to a “T”. “He emphasizes contact, doing an expert job of working pitchers for a fastball he can hammer to the gaps,” according to Baseball America. The Minor League Baseball Analyst says he has “below-average power potential” for a first baseman — he has a career .425 slugging percentage. But he’s hit .299 in three seasons and walked (138) nearly as often as he’s struck out (158).
11. L.J. MAZZILLI, 2B, St. Lucie (A+) (6-1, 190) BORN: Sept. 6, 1990 | DRAFTED: 4th round (2013) | BATS: R BEST OUTCOME: Starting second baseman ETA: 2017 L.J. Mazzill is the son of ex-Met Lee Mazzilli. The Minor League Baseball Analyst calls L.J. a “solid defender with good range.” He hit .293 with a .350 OBP in 201 games, playing just one game above Single-A so far. Mazzilli has shown a knack for stealing bases, going 17-for-21 in his two seasons.
10. JHOAN URENA, 3B, Brooklyn (A-) (6-1, 200)
BORN: Sept. 1, 1994 | DRAFTED: Non-drafted free agent (2011) | BATS: S
BEST OUTCOME: Starting third baseman
Jhoan Urena possesses raw gap power, though the Minor League Baseball Analyst says that could translate into home run power as he gets stronger. Urena launched 20 doubles and five home runs in 75 games with Brooklyn in 2014, also posting a .300 average and .356 OBP. He was 16-for-20 in stolen base attempts over his first two seasons but 7-for-16 in 2014.
9. CHAMP STUART, CF, Savannah (A) (6-0, 175)
BORN: Oct. 11, 1992 | DRAFTED: 6th round (2013) | BATS: R
BEST OUTCOME: Starting centerfielder, leadoff hitter
Baseball America labeled Champ Stuart the fastest runner in the Mets’ 2013 draft class. The publication also mentions him as one of the best athletes selected by the Mets in that draft. He’s certainly shown the speed tool in each of his first two seasons, going 40-for-46 in stolen base attempts and scoring 76 runs in 124 games. He batted a respectable .256 with a .341 OBP for Savannah in 2014.
7. MATT REYNOLDS, SS, Las Vegas (AAA) (6-1, 198)
BORN: Dec. 3, 1990 | DRAFTED: 2nd round (2012) | BATS: R
BEST OUTCOME: Super-sub infielder
Who is Matt Reynolds, really? During his first two seasons playing on Single-A teams, Reynolds batted .234, producing 139 hits in 594 at-bats. In 2014, playing for Double-A Binghamton and Triple-A Las Vegas, Reynolds hit .343, with 164 hits in 478 at-bats. The answer is probably somewhere between the two. He started his minor-league career at Single-A Savannah, never getting the introductory at-bats that most experience at lower-level affiliates such as Kingsport or Brooklyn because the Mets’ brass wanted him to get defensive seasoning at shortstop. Despite the polar-opposite batting averages, his approach at the plate has remained consistent. Reynolds walked 48 times and struck out 106 times from 2012-2013. In 2014, he had 50 walks and 101 strikeouts.
6. GAVIN CECCHINI, SS, St. Lucie (A+) (6-1, 180)
BORN: Dec. 22, 1993 | DRAFTED: 1st round (2012) | BATS: R
BEST OUTCOME: Starting shortstop
Health issues (broken finger, sprained ankle) have slowed Gavin Cecchini’s development some. Scouts love his defensive tools and offensive potential, however. He’s only just starting to show glimpses of what he can do with the bat. Cecchini hit .190 with a .256 OBP in his first 35 games for St. Lucie, following a June promotion. But in his final 33 games, Cecchini was 32-for-112 (.285) with 21 walks and 14 strikeouts.
5. DOMINIC SMITH, 1B, Savannah (A) (6-0, 185)
BORN: June 15, 1995 | DRAFTED: 1st round (2013) | BATS: L
BEST OUTCOME: Starting first baseman
Baseball America labeled Dominic Smith the best pure hitter and best defensive player in the Mets’ 2013 draft class. It notes Smith’s ability to hit “with authority to his pull side and straight away.” He’s projected to develop above-average power without hindering his ability to hit for average. Smith has excellent, advanced plate discipline. He hits in a tough home ballpark for batters, so his depressed power (one home run) in 2014 shouldn’t cause concern. Only 10 players in the Single-A South Atlantic League hit more than 12 home runs in 2014, and Matt Oberste led Savannah hitters with eight home runs. The Minor League Baseball Analyst says Smith can “square up any pitch.” Smith hit .271 with a 9.8 percent walk rate. He struck out in 14.9 percent of his plate appearances.
4. MICHAEL CONFORTO, OF, Brooklyn (A-) (6-1, 211)
BORN: March 1, 1993 | DRAFTED: 1st round (2014) | BATS: L
BEST OUTCOME: Starting left fielder
Michael Conforto hit .331 with a .403 on-base percentage for Brooklyn in 42 games during his debut season. He probably could have advanced to Savannah at some point, but it was later revealed that Conforto was working on his swing mechanics with the Cyclones. Even so, Conforto was promoted to Savannah for the Sand Gnats’ playoff run and didn’t look overmatched in a small sample, going 3-for-9 with two doubles and no strikeouts. He has a mature bat and is projected to be a fast riser through the Mets’ system.
3. BRANDON NIMMO, CF, Binghamton (AA) (6-3, 205)
BORN: March 27, 1993 | DRAFTED: 1st round (2011) | BATS: L
BEST OUTCOME: Starting corner outfielder
Baseball America rates Brandon Nimmo as fairly good at just about everything, though none of his tools stand out as being elite. He produces plenty of line drives, but Nimmo hasn’t shown signs of being anything more than an 8-10 home run bat. Baseball America rated his strike-zone discipline as the best in the Mets’ organization. The Minor League Baseball Analyst says he has “decent” range in center and needs to improve his reads, but with defensive savant Juan Lagares likely the long-term centerfielder in New York, Nimmo probably will have to play a corner in the majors no matter what. Nimmo batted .322 in 62 games with Single-A advanced St. Lucie, but his average fell to .238 during 65 games with Binghamton in 2014. He still showed an above-average walk rate at both levels. Nimmo walked in 17.9 percent of his 279 plate appearances with St. Lucie and in 12.9 percent of his 279 Binghamton plate appearances. After producing just two extra-base hits in his first 35 at-bats (11 games) at Double-A, Nimmo began hitting the ball with more authority, too, slugging .420 in his final 53 games.
2. KEVIN PLAWECKI, C, Las Vegas (AAA) (6-2, 225)
BORN: Feb. 26, 1991 | DRAFTED: 1st round (2012) | BATS: R
BEST OUTCOME: Starting catcher
A position change has been mentioned for Kevin Plawecki, who is blocked at the major league level by Travis d’Arnaud. Baseball America notes Plawecki “receives the ball well” and has enough agility to limit passed balls, though his arm is only average. It also rated Plawecki the best hitter for average in the Mets’ system. After lighting up the Eastern League with a .326 average, Plawecki was promoted to Las Vegas where he struggled initially, going 2–for-23 in his first eight games. But then something clicked because he ended his year batting .317 in 35 games.
1. DILSON HERRERA, 2B, Binghamton (AA)/Mets (5-10, 150)
BORN: March 3, 1994 | DRAFTED: Non-drafted free agent (2010) | BATS: R
BEST OUTCOME: Starting second baseman
Dilson Herrera was acquired with reliever Vic Black in the deal that sent Marlon Byrd and John Buck to the Pirates in August 2013. The Minor League Baseball Analyst notes that he “works to hit everything back up the middle” and “has the speed to do damage on the basepaths.” Despite being one of the youngest players in the Eastern League, Herrera hit .340 with a .406 on-base percentage and .560 slugging percentage in 61 games with Double-A Binghamton. He earned a promotion to the majors at the end of August when Daniel Murphy went down with an injury and Herrera continued to hit, batting .265 with a .342 OBP and .500 slugging percentage in his first nine games. Herrera went 4-for-25 (.160) in his next nine games, however, before his season ended with a quad injury on Sept. 20.