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Most Intriguing Mets Prospects in 2012

By Joe DeMayo ~ January 7th, 2012. Filed under: Digest Contributors, Mets Minors.

In the past we have done a Top 50 Prospect list for the Mets and Yankees. With the explosion of online content, everyone seems to have a “list” and ranking to the point where it all blends together. After all, what’s the difference between prospect number 38 and 45? Does it matter who #1 really is? In most cases it’s fairly obvious. Maybe the best debate is who makes the Top 10.

That’s why I am taking a new twist here at the site. Instead of a Top 10, 25 or 50, I asked my contributors to suggest the most intriguing prospects going into the year. They don’t have to include any of the top names, but the top players aren’t disqualified either.

Joe Demayo has stepped up to the plate and elected to give me his thoughts on the most intriguing prospects in the Mets system this coming season. Joe researches and consumes a huge amount of minor league information. He also has been able to interview scouts, players, and industry experts over the years. When I have a Mets prospect question I call Joe to get his perspective. Earlier this offseason he produced his personal Top 25 Mets prospects for his site, St. Lucie to Flushing, and discussed the Mets farm system with Matt Eddy of Baseball America

The purpose of this exercise is to generate debate and discussion. As always, I am looking forward to your feedback.

I hope you enjoy!

- Mike Silva 1/7/2012

1) Reese Havens (2B) – If not for constant injuries he would already be entrenched at second base. Average defender with a short and powerful stroke at the plate. Also possesses good strike zone knowledge. If healthy, he will be the second baseman in Queens by the time 2012 is over.

2) Akeel Morris (RHP)– Love his stuff. Strikes a ton of batters out, but even though the walks are high he doesn’t give up hits. Will get his first taste of full season ball. Control won’t be fixed overnight, but if it can be harnessed some while still striking guys out and continuing to induce the weak contact, he could be a top-10 prospect in the system next year.

3) Kirk Nieuwenhuis  (OF) Another guy that, if not for injury, would likely be penciled in to start in center field for the Mets to open 2012. Had shoulder surgery on his non-throwing shoulder. Average tools across the board. Could be a 15HR/15SB type talent. If healthy, should be in Queens around mid-season.

4) Josh Edgin (LHP) – Sandy Alderson talked about Robert Carson as someone who could be an option in the pen as a lefty, I would watch out for Edgin. He was beyond dominant in Low-A, and pretty dominant in High-A. Expect him to go to Double-A and potentially make it to Queens this year. Lefty has a fastball that reaches the mid-90’s and a very nice slider.

5) Wilmer Flores (SS) - The time is now for Flores. He probably gets a look at Double-A and he needs to show that his improved plate discipline in the VWL this winter was legitimate. He also HAS to start showing some power. If he doesn’t develop the power that was expected of him he’s going to be a bust. He cannot stick at shortstop, but will probably continue to play it for the time being.

Joe DeMayo is a lifelong resident of Connecticut. He has been covering the Mets for almost 6 years. He started off as a writer for RoundingThirdKnight, which eventually in time would turn into SheaBaseball.com where Joey served as the Editor-In-Chief of SheaBaseball until early 2007. Joey then moved on to GothamBaseballMagazine.com where he wrote for a short period of time, and then was brought on as a correspondent and Mets minor league “guru” for NY Baseball Digest. Joe’s claim to fame is that he had the Johan Santana accurately portrayed since day one and broke the Omar Minaya extension. Check out Joe’s Mets minor league reports and Rumor Mill each week at nybaseballdigest.com He also has his own personal blog called St. Lucie to Flushing.
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14 Responses to Most Intriguing Mets Prospects in 2012

  1. Tommy2cat

    Hi Joe:

    Agree with your list and your analysis. Havens & Niewenhuis could make a big difference this year, not only through their on-field contributions, but also in how the roster will be constituted once they settle in.

    I think the Mets should toy with the idea of moving Flores behind the plate as a catcher. Wish they had done that with Daniel Murphy 3-4 years ago.

    Good job.

  2. NCMetFan

    I’m ready to see Havens impress at spring training and come up to NY after he gets his bat going at AAA or AA. I’m a bit less confident that Nieuwenhuis will be more tha a solid 4th outfielder. One guy I would add is the lefty Gorski. This is a big first half for him. If he goes to AA and picks up where he left off then the Mets may have a solid lefty to add to the Harvey, Wheeler, Familia, Mejia lot of pitchers that should reach NY within a few years.

  3. bebop

    How about the kid they drafted last year, Fullmer?

  4. Chuck Johnson

    Nice job, Joe.

    Havens is probably my favorite prospect in the entire organization, he’s one of those players with no stand-out tools but always seems to find a way to make a play.

    I don’t like making comparisons, but he reminds me of Dustin Pedroia.

    Not saying Havens will ever win an MVP (if you thought Pedroia would your a liar), but, health permitting, I see no reason why he can’t be a solid everyday second baseman, in the Danny Espinosa mold.

    I like Nieuwenhuis too, he reminds me of the Sheirholtz kid in San Fran…lefty OF who can play all three positions, good defensive player with some pop.

    I think he can play everyday, he’s better than Lucas Duda right now, and probably Martinez, too.

    Keep an eye on Taylor Whittenton, the reliever. I was really impressed by him in the AFL and I think he’ll see time in the Mets’ bullpen this year.

  5. Daler

    Who r 4 guys who will never play for Mets?

  6. Pablo

    I agree Joe on Akeel Morris for the same reasons you cited. In both years he’s been in the system, albeit short season ball, he’s held opponents to a batting average well under .200 while striking out more than a batter per inning. The walks are a concern but he’s very raw. I think he’s got great upside.

    The other guy in the system I’m really looking forward to seeing progress is Cesar Puello. This is a big year for him. If he can carry over the power display from the second half last year, and take some more walks, he’s gonna be a problem.

  7. Jeff Robins

    I wish people would get off the “power” kick when it comes to Wilmer Flores. Look, instead, to his RBIs as evidence of his production. He had 81 at St.L. last year. The next had 55. Flores played most of the year while still only 20. Give the kid a break, the power could very well come later. And hitting HRs in the FSL has never been easy.

  8. Anonymous

    Florez can hit, he just needs to be more selective at the plate. He makes contact and his strikeouts are where they need to be but he needs to be more selective, choose the right pitch, and the power will come. Valdespin is ready to make the big club right now and I would not be surprised if he comes north this year out of spring training.

  9. Andrew

    On Edgin, dominating as a 24-year-old in A ball means absolutely nothing. Guess he could turn out well as a situational lefty.

    Valdespin is NOT ready to make the Mets, especially as a shortstop. His defense is horrendous. Maybe he could play second, but I think he still needs more seasoning.

  10. jeff

    jeff robbins - actually flores played most of the year as a 19 year old. even better.

    i love how this article says ” the time is now” regarding flores. lol. ok, he’s 20

    they should keep him at short anyway. thats where the team need is. the need isnt at first or third. flores has a strong enough arm to play short and a good enough glove to play short. actually those tools are above average for him there.

    so his feet arent great for the postion and he wont have great range. so what? if he’s a big bat at short, you live with that

  11. NormE

    Thanks for the insight, Joe. We need more of this in our winter of discontent.

  12. Thomas Condito

    This team has a horrible future, so why just talk about guys to watch, bring them to the so called big team. We need all the help we can get right now.

  13. Piazza


    Why do they need all the help they can get? They aren’t going to contend this year if things so as expected, so why waste valuable development time by bringing prospects up to the bigs when they definitely aren’t ready?

    And you wonder why the Mets haven’t been good in a while.

  14. Serge

    I really think that this blog is undervaluing a stud NY Mets player Fernando Guerillo Juan Pedro Berstein at AA. Hit field and everything but needs to wear two jerseys to fit his name.

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