Last week, in the Arizona Fall League, in a move that has felt inevitable for a year now, Reese Havens began the move from shortstop by lining up at secondbase for the first time. Havens, who, as a member of the taxi squad, only gets to play twice a week, played second in both of his games. He’s hitting a modest .200/.294/.267 (3-for-15) with six strikeouts in four games. As he prepared for his AFL debut, Havens told Adam Rubin, in a piece for Baseball America:
“That’s one of the main things I’m working on out here—trying to move over and get comfortable on the other side.”
“I think the biggest thing is just footwork around the bag. You’ve got to get a bunch of repetitions under your belt.”
While Havens learns a new position, Nick Evans will also try to relearn a position that of “baseball player” that Jerry Manuel wasn’t interested in determining whether he could master at the MLB level. Evans is DHing for Surprise Monday afternoon and thus far is 0-2.
Meanwhile, at Baseball Prospectus, in his Monday Morning Ten-Pack, Kevin Goldstein writes about the struggling Jenrry Mejia:
It might just be the sheer number of Mets fans, or maybe it’s that in a
weak system there’s so little on the prospect front to root for, but
for some reason Mejia is one of the most talked-about players in the
AFL. Everyone wants to talk about the velocity, which is unquestionably
excellent, as he sat at 93-97 mph on Friday while touching 99, but what
about the 12.91 ERA after four games that includes 14 hits and nine walks in just 7 2/3
innings? Yes, at 20, he’s very young for the league, but he’s also much
more of a thrower than a pitcher, even for his age group. His arm is a
special one, but it’s also a bit of a spectacular mess.
Emphasis added. This doesn’t mean Mejia’s not a prospect, he certainly it, but his struggles in AA and the AFL definitely point to the fact that he needs more minor league seasoning.