Danny Abriano, SNY.tv | Twitter |
The bulk of the Mets' impact prospects are in the lower levels of the minors -- highlighted by Brett Baty, Matthew Allan, and Josh Wolf, all selected in the 2019 MLB Draft -- but they do have a handful of prospects who should be ready to contribute this coming season.
While the state of the Mets' farm system is less than ideal due to most of their blue chip prospects being further away and recent trades that saw Jarred Kelenic, Justin Dunn, Anthony Kay, and Simeon Woods Richardson shipped off, there are five interesting players to keep an eye on who could make an impact in 2020...
David Peterson, LHP
The 24-year-old Peterson, who profiles as a back of the rotation starting pitcher, was the Mets' top pick -- 20th overall -- in the 2017 MLB Draft.
He has yet to turn heads in his two full seasons in the minors, but Peterson reached Double-A Binghamton in 2019, where he had a 4.19 ERA and 1.35 WHIP with 122 strikeouts in 116 IP (24 starts). Peterson also had a solid showing this year in the Arizona Fall League.
Whether Peterson opens 2020 back with Binghamton or opens in Triple-A Syracuse, he should be one of the Mets' main options for the starting rotation as the season goes on.
Ryley Gilliam, RHP
Gilliam, who has plus stuff and legitimate setup man potential, might be the least known of this group.
A 23-year-old reliever the Mets selected in the fifth round of the 2018 MLB Draft, Gilliam started the 2019 season with High-A St. Lucie and ended it with Triple-A Syracuse, combining to strike out 56 batters in 38.2 innings.
Gilliam struggled once he made the leap to Triple-A, so he'll almost certainly open back there this season with the possibility of receiving a call up and some point during the season. With the way Gilliam has advanced since being drafted, that call up could come quickly.
Andres Gimenez, INF
For Gimenez in 2019, it was a tale of two seasons -- the disappointing one he had for Double-A Binghamton and the eye-popping one he had in the Arizona Fall League.
As one of the youngest players in Double-A, the 20-year old Gimenez hit just .250/.309/.387 with 22 doubles, five triples, and nine homers in 117 games. But he dominated in the AFL while competing with some of the best prospects in baseball.
Gimenez won the AFL batting title, hitting .371/.413/.586 with five doubles, two triples, and two homers in 75 plate appearances over 18 games.
If what Gimenez showed in the AFL is a sign of things to come, he should quickly advance to Triple-A in 2020 (if he doesn't open there). At that point, he's just a phone call away from the Mets, but he could be blocked on the middle infield.
Franklyn Kilome, RHP
Kilome is the pitcher the Mets received from the Phillies in the trade that sent Asdrubal Cabrera to Philadelphia in 2018. Shortly after the trade, Kilome underwent Tommy John surgery and missed the entire 2019 season.
Mets GM Brodie Van Wagenen said at the GM Meetings that Kilome should be fully healthy and ready to go in 2020.
A Top-100 prospect before his injury, Kilome's innings will be managed closely as he ramps back up after having Tommy John surgery, but he's a pitcher to keep an eye on.
Kevin Smith, LHP
The 22-year-old Smith, who the Mets selected in the seventh round of the 2018 MLB Draft, had a strong season in 2019, posting a 3.15 ERA and 1.26 WHIP while striking out 130 batters in 117 IP (23 starts) split between High-A St. Lucie and Double-A Binghamton.
Smith could be a No. 4 or No. 5 type starting pitcher or a good bullpen piece, SNY's Joe DeMayo noted in his Top 20 Mets Prospects for 2020.