So, I started to do this as a mid-season prospect review, then got derailed by a few other projects. Instead this will become a piece of the post-season wrap of 2012 around here.
#21 – Philip Evans
What I Thought: After the Mets signed him for the third-largest bonus in their 2011 draft class, he was a worthwhile middle infield prospect.
Reality: He’s a worthwhile middle infield prospect. Evans clearly made use of his winter, and spring, by the time he reported to Brooklyn, the 19-year old’s arms were huge by minor league or middle-infielder standards anywhere. I saw him make solid contact, but nearly everything was yanked in the direction of left-center field. He’s already patient for a young hitter. However, he’ll need to learn to go the other way at least a little bit to keep his average up at higher levels. I’m not sold that Evans’ has the range to play shortstop everyday (see also: only two stolen bases in 73 games in Brooklyn), or the arm.
On the Next Top 41? Yup.
#22 – LHP Juan Urbina
What I Thought: He was a projectable left-hander.
Reality: He’s a rail-thin 6’2″ with little strength and no stuff. The night I saw him in Brooklyn, he topped out at 86 mph with his fastball that he had trouble locating, and mixed in a lousy, slurvy breaking ball.
Stock: Gone. (As an aside, ranking him at #14 two years ago looks awful.)
On the Next Top 41? No chance.
#23 – RHP Chris Schwinden
What I Thought: He had a chance as a fifth starter/long man type.
Reality: He was designated for assignment and claimed four different times in a month, passing from the Mets to the Jays to the Yankees, to the Indians and back to the Mets. That’s pretty funny. Certainly funnier than his 0-1 record and 12.46 ERA with 13 runs on 15 hits allowed in 8.2 innings in the big leagues this year. Returned to AAA, he was a capable AAA starter.
Stock: Nearly zero.
On the Next Top 41? No
What I Thought: He was going to be a big league utility guy.
Reality: Satin picked up one big league plate appearance, was designated for assignment, cleared waivers and then served as a everyday guy in AAA, rotating between first base (79 games), second (36) and third (9) over the course of 131 games.
Stock: Priced at only a penny
On the Next Top 41? Nope. He’ll be 28 by Opening Day 2013. He’ll play in AAA for a few more years but will never be a valuable big league roster piece.
What I Thought: Marte’s walk and strikeout rates showed improvement in an otherwise quiet 2011 in St. Lucie. Concerns about his defense and eventual ceiling kept him down the list.
Reality: More of the same, but just a little bit better all the way across the board at a higher level in the season in which he turned 21. His strikeout rate ticked down, his walk rate and extra-base hit rates ticked up, and his isolated slugging all rose. His 16 errors were his fewest over a full season.
Stock: Quietly, up.
On the Next Top 41? Yes.