Top 31 Prospects: New York Mets by Eric Longenhagen and Kiley McDaniel January 10, 2020 Below is an analysis of the prospects in the farm system of the New York Mets. Scouting reports are compiled with information provided by industry sources as well as from our own (both Eric Longenhagen’s and Kiley McDaniel’s) observations. For more information on the 20-80 scouting scale by which all of our prospect content is governed you can click here. For further explanation of the merits and drawbacks of Future Value, read this. All of the numbered prospects here also appear on The Board, a new feature at the site that offers sortable scouting information for every organization. That can be found here. Top Prospects Team Lists 20202019ALBALCHWHOUBOSCLELAANYYDETOAKTBRKCRSEATORMINTEX NLATLCHCARIMIACINCOLNYMMILLADPHIPITSDPWSNSTLSFGALBALCHWHOUBOSCLELAANYYDETOAKTBRKCRSEATORMINTEX NLATLCHCARIMIACINCOLNYMMILLADPHIPITSDPWSNSTLSFG Mets Top Prospects Rk Name Age Highest Level Position ETA FV 1 Ronny Mauricio 18.8 A SS 2023 55 2 Andres Gimenez 21.4 AA SS 2020 50 3 Mark Vientos 20.1 A 3B 2022 50 4 Brett Baty 20.2 A- 3B 2022 45+ 5 Matthew Allan 18.7 A- RHP 2023 45+ 6 Francisco Alvarez 18.1 R C 2023 45+ 7 Thomas Szapucki 23.6 AA LHP 2021 45 8 David Peterson 24.4 AA LHP 2020 45 9 Franklyn Kilome 24.5 AA RHP 2020 40+ 10 Shervyen Newton 20.7 A SS 2022 40 11 Junior Santos 18.4 R RHP 2023 40 12 Josh Wolf 19.4 R RHP 2024 40 13 Endy Rodriguez 19.7 R C 2023 40 14 Kevin Smith 22.7 AA LHP 2021 40 15 Jaylen Palmer 19.4 R 3B 2023 40 16 Adrian Hernandez 18.9 R CF 2022 40 17 Robert Dominguez 18.1 R RHP 2024 40 18 Jordany Ventura 19.5 R RHP 2023 40 19 Carlos Cortes 22.5 A+ LF 2021 40 20 Joshua Cornielly 19.0 R RHP 2023 40 21 Jordan Humphreys 23.6 A+ RHP 2021 40 22 Alexander Ramirez 17.0 R CF 2025 40 23 Ali Sanchez 23.0 AAA C 2020 40 24 Will Toffey 25.0 AA 3B 2020 40 25 Freddy Valdez 18.1 R RF 2023 35+ 26 Ryley Gilliam 23.4 AAA RHP 2021 35+ 27 Desmond Lindsay 23.0 A+ CF 2020 35+ 28 Walker Lockett 25.7 MLB RHP 2019 35+ 29 Tylor Megill 24.4 AA RHP 2021 35+ 30 Joander Suarez 19.9 R RHP 2023 35+ 31 Michel Otanez 22.5 A- RHP 2022 35+ Reading Options Detail Level Data Only Full Position Filter All All C 1B 2B SS 3B OF LF CF RF LHP RHP 55 FV Prospects 1. Ronny Mauricio, SS Video Signed: July 2nd Period, 2017 from Dominican Republic (NYM) Age 18.8 Height 6′ 3″ Weight 166 Bat / Thr S / R FV 55 Tool Grades (Present/Future) Hit Raw Power Game Power Run Fielding Throw 25/50 45/55 20/50 50/50 45/50 55/60 Similar to the way Andres Gimenez skipped over short season ball (though, he also skipped over the GCL), the Mets pushed Mauricio to Low-A after he had spent just a year on the complex. He was three and a half years younger than the average Sally League player and was still hitting an impressive .283/.323/.381 before he had a lousy August. The exciting physical characteristics — a lanky, projectable frame, the sort you typically see on the mound, the hands, actions, feet, and arm strength for short, precocious feel to hit — shared by Mauricio’s franchise-altering shortstop predecessors, the stuff that had us deliriously excited about him before he even signed, are still present. The explosiveness and physicality of cornerstone, power-hitting shortstops still percolates beneath the surface, which is fine because Mauricio will be 18 until April and it isn’t reasonable to expect that he’d already have grown into impact power. When most players his age are either in the midst of their freshman season of college or getting ready to start Extended Spring Training, he might be in the Florida State League. Because he’ll be so young and in a pitcher-friendly league, it’s very likely that a year from now, we’ll be ignoring a pretty lousy statline for contextual reasons. With another full year of data to consider, we now know Mauricio is a little swing-happy and that, even if that explosion arrives, he either needs to develop feel for lift or tweak the swing if all the power is to actualize. Hopefully we’re not living in the timeline where Mauricio outgrows shortstop and those two things remain issues. Switch-hitting shortstops with power, uh, don’t really exist. That Mauricio has a chance to be one means he may one day be the top overall prospect in baseball, and several outcomes short of that ideal are still very, very good. 50 FV Prospects 2. Andres Gimenez, SS Video Signed: July 2nd Period, 2015 from Venezuela (NYM) Age 21.4 Height 5′ 11″ Weight 165 Bat / Thr L / R FV 50 Tool Grades (Present/Future) Hit Raw Power Game Power Run Fielding Throw 45/55 40/45 30/40 60/55 50/55 55/55 We now have what you could say is a softer 50 on Gimenez. Defensively, at either short or second, Gimenez’s wide array of skills, especially his range (it’s less important than it used to be because of improved positioning, but Gimenez can really go get it) is going to make him a strong middle infield defender. On offense, even though Gimenez spent 2019 all the way up at Double-A Binghamton, things are less clear. He looked physically overmatched against Double-A pitching, which is fine because he was only 20, but he was also chasing a lot and seemed doomed if he fell behind in counts because of it. The all-fields spray (lots of oppo doubles) that comes when Gimenez targets more hittable pitches is very promising. We’re not optimistic that any kind of impact power will ever come (he’ll golf one out to his pull side once in a while), but the hit tool and doubles would be plenty to profile everyday on the middle infield if Gimenez learns to be more selective. 3. Mark Vientos, 3B Video Drafted: 2nd Round, 2017 from American Heritage HS (FL) (NYM) Age 20.1 Height 6′ 4″ Weight 185 Bat / Thr R / R FV 50 Tool Grades (Present/Future) Hit Raw Power Game Power Run Fielding Throw 30/45 60/70 35/60 40/35 35/45 55/60 The way Vientos’ strikeout/walk rates trended in 2019 combined with continued skepticism regarding his ability to stay at third base led some of our sources to express trepidation about where we had him on our 2019 summer top 100 update. But he also put up an above-average statline in full-season ball as a teenager and he has some of the most exciting, frame-based power projection in all the minors. He’s tied for the highest average exit velo among hitters on this list and he has room for another 20 pounds on the frame, which is likely to come since Vientos was one of the younger prospects in his draft class and is younger than 2019 first rounder, Brett Baty. Because we’re talking about a corner bat with strikeout/walk rate yellow flags, Vientos is a high-risk bat but the power gives him middle-of-the-order potential. 45+ FV Prospects 4. Brett Baty, 3B Drafted: 1st Round, 2019 from Lake Travis HS (TX) (NYM) Age 20.2 Height 6′ 3″ Weight 210 Bat / Thr L / R FV 45+ Tool Grades (Present/Future) Hit Raw Power Game Power Run Fielding Throw 35/55 65/65 30/60 45/40 45/50 50/50 In an age when more and more teams are taking model-driven approaches to building a draft board, Baty’s age was such a unique trait that precedent couldn’t inform one much: he was 19.6 on draft day while some other Day One prospects were as young as 17.6. A player’s age relative to his peers is a predictive variable for pro success (younger is better) and Baty is older than a lot of 2018’s high school draftees, against whom we had pro performance to judge while Baty only had high school stats on draft day. Baty compares quite closely to Cardinals 2018 first rounder and top 100 prospect Nolan Gorman: he’s big, strong, and has huge power and advanced feel to hit. He may not be an athletic fit at third base, especially long-term, and is at risk of moving to first, but his quicker-than-expected feet (he’s a standout hoops player as well) could help delay that. Baty essentially held serve in his first taste of pro ball and his 2020 season will go a long way to dictating his value, as another half-season of pro performance will wipe out all the pre-draft considerations. 5. Matthew Allan, RHP Drafted: 3rd Round, 2019 from Seminole HS (FL) (NYM) Age 18.7 Height 6′ 3″ Weight 210 Bat / Thr R / R FV 45+ Tool Grades (Present/Future) Fastball Curveball Changeup Command Sits/Tops 55/60 55/65 45/55 35/45 93-96 / 97 Allan was one of the top pitchers in the 2019 prep class over the summer, then took a big step forward in the spring, touching the high-90s in every start after peaking in the mid-90s over the summer. His fastball and breaking ball were both anywhere from 60 to 70 grade pitches during the spring depending on the day and scout, while his changeup was a 55 at times over the summer, when he also sometimes flashed average command. If you put together the best elements from both versions of Allan, there’s a potential ace, but the worry is that either one or the other will the the actual outcome, which is still a solid mid-rotation type. He’s not projectable and is an average athlete, so there are some limits on his upside. He had a rumored $4 million price tag in the draft, which many thought would push him to college, but he ended up changing his asking price and signing for $2.5 million in the third round after throwing a much higher number out to clubs that almost took him at multiple spots in the first. Mets brass are thrilled with their first draft under the new regime and some specifically think Allan is already the best prospect of the group. He could be a top 100 prospect by midseason if he continues his current streak of good health and performance, as his TrackMan figures are very strong. 6. Francisco Alvarez, C Video Signed: July 2nd Period, 2018 from Venezuela (NYM) Age 18.1 Height 5′ 11″ Weight 220 Bat / Thr R / R FV 45+ Tool Grades (Present/Future) Hit Raw Power Game Power Run Fielding Throw 25/55 50/55 25/50 45/40 45/55 55/55 Young catchers are notoriously slow to develop as they adjust to the physical and mental demands of the position, which often stymies their offensive production. But Alvarez’s first pro season was statistically impressive. He only played in 42 games, but he hit .312/.407/.510 (mostly in the Appy League) while playing very good defense and appearing more svelte and conditioned than he had as an amateur. His swing (his front foot is down very early) could stand to be a little more athletic to take advantage of his movement skills, but he rotates hard anyway and his hitting posture enables him to lift pitches in various locations. The receiving, lateral mobility, and arm strength are all promising on the defensive side, too. Teen catchers are risky and often take forever to develop, but Alvarez’s track record of hitting extends back to amateur play, so we’re a little more comfortable here. We view him very similarly to the way we viewed Miguel Amaya a few years ago, except Amaya’s frame was more obviously projectable. 45 FV Prospects 7. Thomas Szapucki, LHP Video Drafted: 5th Round, 2015 from Dwyer HS (FL) (NYM) Age 23.6 Height 6′ 2″ Weight 190 Bat / Thr R / L FV 45 Tool Grades (Present/Future) Fastball Curveball Changeup Command Sits/Tops 45/50 60/60 45/50 40/45 90-94 / 96 Working back from a year and a half of Tommy John rehab, both Szapucki’s in-game pitch count and velocity climbed as the summer burned on. He worked in 20 to 30-pitch stints for the first several weeks of the year before rounding into more traditional starter form late. His sinker and changeup have similar movement, which will benefit the change (which is just fine in a vacuum). The curveball, though, the pitch that enabled Szapucki’s earlier breakout, remains excellent. We’re hoping more mechanical consistency in season two back from TJ will yield better command, but even if this iteration of Szapucki is where things settle, that’ll still be a strong multi-inning relief piece if not a No. 4/5 starter. 8. David Peterson, LHP Video Drafted: 1st Round, 2017 from Oregon (NYM) Age 24.4 Height 6′ 6″ Weight 240 Bat / Thr L / L FV 45 Tool Grades (Present/Future) Fastball Slider Curveball Changeup Command Sits/Tops 45/45 50/50 45/45 50/55 50/55 89-91 / 93 Peterson was a known prep prospect as an underclassman in Colorado due to his 6-foot-6 frame and ability to touch 90 mph from the left side at an early age. Then he had two decent years at Oregon before he dominated as a junior, striking out 140 hitters and walking just 15 in 100 innings. He has never had a plus pitch, nor does he project to have one, and instead works in the low-90s with tough angle and great extension, and several other pitches. He doesn’t have high spin rates on his breaking stuff and pitches more to weak contact with a sinking, sometimes cutting changeup, looking like a steady, durable, No. 4/5 starter who we’ll see in the big leagues this year. 40+ FV Prospects 9. Franklyn Kilome, RHP Video Signed: July 2nd Period, 2012 from Dominican Republic (PHI) Age 24.5 Height 6′ 6″ Weight 215 Bat / Thr R / R FV 40+ Tool Grades (Present/Future) Fastball Curveball Changeup Command Sits/Tops 60/60 55/55 45/50 40/40 92-94 / 96 Tommy John surgery late in the fall of 2018 meant Kilome didn’t pitch at all last year, though he was throwing with effort in the bullpen late in September. He has shown a starter’s mix of pitches, especially during his brief time with the Mets (he was acquired from Philly for Asdrúbal Cabrera ahead of the 2018 deadline) when his strike throwing and changeup improved. Prior to that, he had been pretty raw for a pitcher his age and had begun to look like a bullpen arm, an outcome that became more likely due to the injury and his presence on New York’s 40-man. There’s a chance Kilome looks really good in the spring and the Mets decide to let him start while managing his workload, but we expect to see mid-90s heat and a great curveball out of the bullpen sometime in 2020. 40 FV Prospects 10. Shervyen Newton, SS Signed: July 2nd Period, 2015 from Netherlands (NYM) Age 20.7 Height 6′ 4″ Weight 180 Bat / Thr S / R FV 40 Tool Grades (Present/Future) Hit Raw Power Game Power Run Fielding Throw 30/40 55/65 30/50 50/50 40/50 55/55 As we sourced for this org list, we spoke with a scout who saw Newton play terribly for a week and still thought he belonged high on this list because his physical talent is so remarkable. This is an extreme risk hit tool prospect, the kind who sometimes tricks us into thinking relevant adjustments have been made and performs at upper levels only to flail at big league pitching (see: Brinson, Lewis), but also sometimes becomes Aaron Judge. Newton is built like an SEC wide receiver, he already has sizable power and will likely grow into more, while also staying on the left side of the infield. He has a shot to be what we have Mauricio projected to be; a switch-hitting shortstop or third baseman with impact power. But Newton has run two consecutive years of strikeout rates up around 32% and the quality of his at-bats is wildly variable. He’s still growing into his body, so perhaps more reliable bat-to-ball skills will arrive once he does. Even if he cuts the K’s down to the 25% range, we could be talking about a valuable everyday big leaguer. 11. Junior Santos, RHP Signed: July 2nd Period, 2017 from Dominican Republic (NYM) Age 18.4 Height 6′ 8″ Weight 218 Bat / Thr R / R FV 40 Tool Grades (Present/Future) Fastball Slider Changeup Command Sits/Tops 50/60 45/50 40/50 35/50 89-93 / 95 A slight dip in velo and a strike-throwing regression isn’t enough to slide Santos down the pref list at this point, not as his age, nor at his size, and especially not when you consider both. This is a giant teenager with a good arm and some breaking ball and changeup feel (for creating movement, not for locating) who was pushed hurriedly to an affiliate when he was still 17. The arm action looked a little less fluid and was a bit compromised last season, but we’re still on Santos as a long-term projection arm with an elite frame. 12. Josh Wolf, RHP Drafted: 2nd Round, 2019 from St. Thomas HS (TX) (NYM) Age 19.4 Height 6′ 2″ Weight 175 Bat / Thr R / R FV 40 Tool Grades (Present/Future) Fastball Curveball Changeup Command Sits/Tops 55/60 50/60 40/50 40/50 92-95 / 97 Wolf was a lower-end follow after the summer showcase circuit, then popped up during his draft spring as a high school senior. When making the rounds in Texas, Kiley ran into him with no background; Wolf sat 94-97 with plus life and a plus curveball while there were a couple dozen scouts in the house who were trying to double Wolf up with eventual first round pick Jackson Rutledge (both are based in the Houston area). Wolf’s frame and delivery aren’t ideal for a 200 inning type, but the stuff is loud, the arm is fresh, the velo is new, and there’s no track record of any trouble in the way of injuries, overuse, or walk rate, so at some point we’re just nitpicking. 13. Endy Rodriguez, C Signed: July 2nd Period, 2018 from Dominican Republic (NYM) Age 19.7 Height 6′ 0″ Weight 170 Bat / Thr S / R FV 40 Tool Grades (Present/Future) Hit Raw Power Game Power Run Fielding Throw 25/60 35/45 20/40 45/40 45/60 50/50 Rodriguez lost some time to a hamstring strain last year and it may have masked his real athleticism for a while during an otherwise stellar first summer in the states. This is a very athletic, switch-hitting catcher with advanced feel for contact, and a few of the sources we spoke with about Rodriguez were actually most excited about his defense. The movement, receiving, and catch-and-throw skills are fine, but Rodriguez has also seen time at first base and in the outfield, so he might be a very interesting, multi-positional player. We have him valued where we had Rafael Marchan and Gabriel Moreno at the same stage. 14. Kevin Smith, LHP Drafted: 7th Round, 2018 from Georgia (NYM) Age 22.7 Height 6′ 5″ Weight 200 Bat / Thr R / L FV 40 Tool Grades (Present/Future) Fastball Slider Changeup Command Sits/Tops 45/45 50/55 45/50 45/50 87-90 / 92 Smith was a seventh rounder in 2018 out of Georgia. He’s a big lefty who sits around 90 with a three-pitch mix, but he was used in a number of roles in college, so nobody was really pounding the table for him. Well, maybe they should have been: he carved up Low-A after being drafted, then did the same to High-A and before pitching well at Double-A as a 22-year-old in his first full season. The stuff still isn’t great, but his slider flashes above average, his fastball has a solid spin rate and overall characteristics to go along with some deception and the feel to get the most out of his stuff. The intangibles seem to be driving the success here and the tools aren’t bad, so a big league look in 2020 or 2021 now seems likely. 15. Jaylen Palmer, 3B Drafted: 22th Round, 2018 from Holy Cross Academy HS (NY) (NYM) Age 19.4 Height 6′ 3″ Weight 195 Bat / Thr R / R FV 40 Tool Grades (Present/Future) Hit Raw Power Game Power Run Fielding Throw 20/40 50/60 25/50 50/40 40/45 55/55 This is one of, if not the highest variance prospects in the entire system. Unearthed in the Mets’ backyard as an overslot Day Three pick, Palmer surprised the industry by going to Kingsport and performing well above what was expected of him. We think there’s a gap between the contact performance (Palmer hit .250) and actual skill at this point, but that’s okay for such a lanky, cold-weather, out-of-nowhere high school prospect. The measurable power Palmer generates on contact is shocking. He’s tied with Mark Vientos and Brett Baty for the highest average exit velo on this list and he’s arguably more physically projectable than either of them. His long-term defensive profile is still unclear, and Palmer’s ability to make contact and recognize offspeed stuff is raw. It’s possible he becomes a whiff-prone corner outfielder and falls off the list in two years, but he may also stay on the dirt and develop passable feel to hit and huge raw power. 16. Adrian Hernandez, CF Signed: July 2nd Period, 2017 from Dominican Republic (NYM) Age 18.9 Height 5′ 9″ Weight 210 Bat / Thr R / R FV 40 Tool Grades (Present/Future) Hit Raw Power Game Power Run Fielding Throw 20/45 50/55 25/50 50/55 40/50 50/50 Like Desmond Lindsay, who is a ways down this list, Hernandez is muscular, explosive, tightly-wound, and suffered a severe soft-tissue injury (a torn hamstring) that cost him most all of 2019. And so, the scouting report remains the same as it did on last year’s list: Hernandez runs well enough to stay in center field and he has sizable raw power for a teenager. The cement on the bod is pretty dry, and while we think that means limited power projection, it also probably means Hernandez stays in center. The exit velos on THE BOARD for both Hernandez and Lindsay are from the 2018 season, when they were healthy enough to generate sufficient data. 17. Robert Dominguez, RHP Signed: July 2nd Period, 2019 from Venezuela (NYM) Age 18.1 Height 6′ 4″ Weight 200 Bat / Thr R / R FV 40 Tool Grades (Present/Future) Fastball Curveball Changeup Command Sits/Tops 55/60 50/60 40/45 35/50 93-96 / 99 Dominguez was a known, and not all that highly-regarded, pitching prospect at the beginning of 2019. He was then a 17-year-old Venezuelan righty with some effort who sat 90-93, which is typically a $10,000 to $25,000 bonus pitcher. He was then 94-97 at an event in the summer, and teams sat up straight to reconsider him, but some clubs wanted to see it another time or two to make sure it wasn’t an anomaly. The Mets moved quickly, though Dominguez’s bonus, which we were told was $95,000, reflected that level of uncertainty. Between when Dominguez was waiting for his contract to be approved and the end of Dominican instructs, he continued to sit in the mid-90s and hit 99, flashing a plus breaking ball at times. A scout who saw him during this period told us he would “blow the doors off” of the GCL this time next summer. He’s only thrown a handful of times since the velo spike and not even all of the Mets upper level decision makers have seen him yet, but the talent level is on par with a compensation or second round pick. There’s just significantly more uncertainty and less track record than even later-developing players taken in that range, like Josh Wolf. 18. Jordany Ventura, RHP Signed: July 2nd Period, 2017 from Dominican Republic (NYM) Age 19.5 Height 6′ 0″ Weight 165 Bat / Thr R / R FV 40 Tool Grades (Present/Future) Fastball Slider Changeup Command Sits/Tops 45/55 50/55 40/50 40/50 91-94 / 95 Ventura began the summer in the DSL but had reached Kingsport by August. He doesn’t have the big frame to dream on but he’s very athletic, can spin it, his fastball has life, he already throws pretty hard, and he’ll show an occasional plus slider. You can go kind of wild projecting on his command because of the athleticism, but realistically he could be a No. 4/5 starter. 19. Carlos Cortes, LF Video Drafted: 3rd Round, 2018 from South Carolina (NYM) Age 22.5 Height 5′ 8″ Weight 200 Bat / Thr L / S FV 40 Tool Grades (Present/Future) Hit Raw Power Game Power Run Fielding Throw 30/45 60/60 35/55 40/40 40/45 45/45 Cortes is unique in that he’s a switch-thrower who stood out early in his high school career and pitched along with playing all over the diamond, including an attempt at catching. He had plus bat control at that stage but his body has thickened and he’s lost some of his athleticism as he’s aged, though he still has good feel for the bat. He’s played a passable second base and otherwise would fit in left field or maybe at first, but the defensive value is minimal regardless. The calling card is plus raw power and feel to hit from the left side. There isn’t much else there, so a role as a Frank Catalanotto/Matt Stairs style platoon player or bench bat seems to be the most likely outcome. 20. Joshua Cornielly, RHP Signed: July 2nd Period, 2017 from Venezuela (NYM) Age 19.0 Height 6′ 2″ Weight 175 Bat / Thr R / R FV 40 Tool Grades (Present/Future) Fastball Curveball Changeup Command Sits/Tops 40/45 40/50 45/55 40/55 88-93 / 95 While he isn’t your typical, huge-framed teenage arm, Cornielly has a lot of starter traits. He’s a plus athlete with a squeaky clean delivery, and advanced changeup feel and fastball command. The breaking ball needs work, but it’s a shape problem more than a raw spin one, and we think Cornielly is athletic enough to develop in this area. He has a realistic shot to be a No. 4/5 starter down the line, and a non-zero chance to develop a premium change, command, or both, and be more. 21. Jordan Humphreys, RHP Video Drafted: 18th Round, 2015 from Crystal River HS (FL) (NYM) Age 23.6 Height 6′ 2″ Weight 223 Bat / Thr R / R FV 40 Tool Grades (Present/Future) Fastball Slider Changeup Command Sits/Tops 45/50 55/55 45/50 45/50 91-95 / 96 Humphrey’s Tommy John rehab started and stopped (more of the latter) last summer before he threw during the Fall League, where he sat in the low-90s on about a week’s rest. He showed a rare changeup but mostly worked off an 82-85 mph slider otherwise. He looked like a potential backend starter before the UCL blew out and all the setbacks started, but looked more like a “maybe” reliever in the fall. We like his chances of bouncing back but he’ll need to show it early in the spring and stay healthy. 22. Alexander Ramirez, CF Video Signed: July 2nd Period, 2019 from Dominican Republic (NYM) Age 17.0 Height 6′ 3″ Weight 175 Bat / Thr R / R FV 40 Tool Grades (Present/Future) Hit Raw Power Game Power Run Fielding Throw 20/50 40/55 20/55 55/55 40/50 50/55 This Alexander Ramirez and the Angels recently-signed Alexander Ramirez are going to be conflated with one another for the next several years because they have almost identical builds. They’re each classic, big-framed, power projection outfielders. This Ramirez runs well enough to try center field for a while, though we expect he’ll move to a corner eventually due to his size. Lever length may be an issue here. 23. Ali Sanchez, C Signed: July 2nd Period, 2013 from Venezuela (NYM) Age 23.0 Height 6′ 0″ Weight 196 Bat / Thr R / R FV 40 Tool Grades (Present/Future) Hit Raw Power Game Power Run Fielding Throw 45/50 40/40 30/30 30/30 55/55 55/55 Added to the 40-man during the offseason, Sanchez projects as a glove-oriented backup. 24. Will Toffey, 3B Video Drafted: 4th Round, 2017 from Vanderbilt (OAK) Age 25.0 Height 6′ 2″ Weight 205 Bat / Thr L / R FV 40 Tool Grades (Present/Future) Hit Raw Power Game Power Run Fielding Throw 40/50 50/50 30/40 50/50 50/55 70/70 Toffey was a notable player on the national stage all the way back to high school and has been a similar guy for those last seven years. He’s got solid feel to hit and works counts with mediocre raw power and ordinary bat speed. He’s made offensive adjustments at each level but has excelled only once he’s been on the old side for prospects at each level, so the low-end regular chance has mostly dried up now. He’s a solid defender with a plus arm who probably fits best as a lefty platoon corner bat and is still on schedule to be that at some point in 2020 or 2021. 35+ FV Prospects 25. Freddy Valdez, RF Signed: July 2nd Period, 2018 from Dominican Republic (NYM) Age 18.1 Height 6′ 3″ Weight 215 Bat / Thr R / R FV 35+ Tool Grades (Present/Future) Hit Raw Power Game Power Run Fielding Throw 25/50 50/55 20/55 40/30 40/45 45/45 Valdez got a big bonus as part of the 2018 class and is a beefy power guy who we were a little skeptical of athletically, but he performed in the DSL and was pushed to the GCL last summer. The exit velos are a little lower than we expected given how big and strong Valdez is already. 26. Ryley Gilliam, RHP Video Drafted: 5th Round, 2018 from Clemson (NYM) Age 23.4 Height 5′ 10″ Weight 170 Bat / Thr R / R FV 35+ Tool Grades (Present/Future) Fastball Curveball Command Sits/Tops 55/60 55/55 40/45 92-94 / 96 Gilliam was the ace starter for one of the most prospect-laden prep teams in the country in 2015, Kennesaw Mountain High School, which also had current top 100 prospect Tyler Stephenson (Reds) and center fielder Reggie Pruitt (Blue Jays), who got a $500,000 bonus in the 24th round. Gilliam could’ve received a low-to-mid six figure bonus out of high school, but instead went to Clemson, where he mostly relieved, a role that agreed with his aggressive approach and fastball/curveball combination. He has two above-average offerings rather than a true plus out pitch, which is why he’s in this tier rather than the 40 FV one. 27. Desmond Lindsay, CF Video Drafted: 2nd Round, 2015 from Out of Door Academy HS (FL) (NYM) Age 23.0 Height 6′ 0″ Weight 200 Bat / Thr R / R FV 35+ Tool Grades (Present/Future) Hit Raw Power Game Power Run Fielding Throw 30/40 60/60 40/50 60/55 45/50 50/50 A torn hamstring cost Lindsay virtually all of 2019, a familiar refrain in an injury-riddled pro career, which has included several hamstring issues. Lindsay has big tools, but he struggles with contact and hasn’t had the in-game reps to remedy it. 28. Walker Lockett, RHP Drafted: 4th Round, 2012 from Providence HS (FL) (SDP) Age 25.7 Height 6′ 5″ Weight 225 Bat / Thr R / R FV 35+ Tool Grades (Present/Future) Fastball Curveball Changeup Command Sits/Tops 45/45 50/50 55/55 45/45 90-93 / 95 A slight velo dip (92-95 in 2018, 90-93 last year) now has Lockett projecting as more of a spot starter or swingman rather than a sinkerballing No. 5. 29. Tylor Megill, RHP Drafted: 8th Round, 2018 from Arizona (NYM) Age 24.4 Height 6′ 7″ Weight 230 Bat / Thr R / R FV 35+ Tool Grades (Present/Future) Fastball Slider Command Sits/Tops 50/50 55/55 40/45 90-93 / 95 Megill has a similar profile to his older brother, Trevor, who was a recent Rule 5 pick by the Cubs from the Padres. They’re both giant and throw hard and pitched at Loyola Marymount, while Tylor later ended up at Arizona. Tylor has made notable improvements in pro ball to his breaking ball after going in the eighth round as a senior sign in 2018. One source described Tylor as a potential Robert Gsellman or Seth Lugo due to his high-octane stuff, spin rates, and multi-inning potential. Given his age, he could get to the big leagues in 2020 with continued refinement. 30. Joander Suarez, RHP Signed: July 2nd Period, 2017 from Venezuela (NYM) Age 19.9 Height 6′ 3″ Weight 180 Bat / Thr R / R FV 35+ Tool Grades (Present/Future) Fastball Slider Changeup Command Sits/Tops 45/50 50/55 40/50 40/50 91-94 / 95 There are some elements of Suarez’s delivery that need to be ironed out if he’s going to locate consistently enough to start, but he’s strong of build, has a loose arm, and can spin a two-plane slider from his current three-quarters arm slot. He’s an interesting developmental follow for now. 31. Michel Otanez, RHP Signed: July 2nd Period, 2016 from Dominican Republic (NYM) Age 22.5 Height 6′ 3″ Weight 215 Bat / Thr R / R FV 35+ Tool Grades (Present/Future) Fastball Slider Command Sits/Tops 55/60 45/50 35/40 90-97 / 99 Just a body/arm strength lottery ticket for now, Otanez should continue starting for a bit in order to refine his breaking ball. If that comes along, he’ll be a middle reliever. Other Prospects of Note Grouped by type and listed in order of preference within each category. Younger Developmental Types Stanley Consuegra, RF Blaine McIntosh, CF Sebastian Espino, SS Federico Polanco, 2B Robert Colina, RHP Benito Garcia, RHP Consuegra would be above Valdez on the main list on tools and long-term physical projection but he missed all of 2019 with a torn ACL. McIntosh was a multi-sport high schooler committed to Vanderbilt who the Mets got done on Day Three of the 2019 draft. He’s toolsy, but raw. Espino is a contact-oriented shortstop who lacks bat control when he takes big hacks, and bat speed when he’s under control. Polanco was a DSL All-Star; he’s a little more compact but twitchy. Both will need to have contact-driven offensive profiles since they lack power projection. Colina is a loose teenage arm up to 93 with positive spin axis traits. Garcia is the oldest player in this cluster at 19.8 (McIntosh and Espino are the youngest at 18.6) and sits 90-93 with above-average spin. Depth Arms and Luis Carpio Reyson Santos, RHP Dedniel Nunez, RHP Tony Dibrell, RHP Christian James, RHP Santos, 21, has been up to 96 but the breaking ball is still a work in progress. He’s a relief-only sort. Nunez is older (23) but also up to 96 with nearly pure backspin. He had a 15% swinging strike rate on his heater last year, but it was at lower levels. Dibrell and James are spot starter types. System Overview This group is a bit thinner at the top because of Pete Alonso’s graduation and the Marcus Stroman trade (and, of course, there’s no Jarred Kelenic or Justin Dunn), but a tier of teenagers (mostly arms) in the lower levels of the system have emerged to make it deeper. Both recent agents-turned-GM, the Mets’ Brodie Van Wagenen and ex-Diamondback Dave Stewart, were a little cavalier with dealing away prospects early during their tenures. If you care about surplus value, then the Robinson Canó deal was instant highway robbery for Seattle. If you don’t, it’s probably starting to look that way. But the Keon Broxton trade, in which the Mets surrendered three prospects for a player who was DFA’d by Baltimore less than a year later, was another, almost immediate example. Decision-makers deserve time to adjust the same way players do. The Mets beefed up the analytics department last year. We’re still waiting to see if they start scouting the lowest levels of the minors, but if their goal is to compete right now, then they’re not likely to acquire that type of player anyway. How the international department sustains its recent level of excellence in the absence of departed Chris Becerra will be a key to continuing to stock a system that looks better than we anticipated when we began sourcing.