12/23: Winter League Update And a New Player of the Week

2014 Mets
Wilmer Flores (Bravos de Margarita – VWL) – Another week, and more of the same from the 22-year-old: more hits. He had multi-hit gamesWednesday, Thursday, and Friday and “slacked” Saturday by going 1-for-5 to extend his hitting streak to five games. He’s hit safely in nine of his last 10 games, and is hitting .429/.478/.714 with three doubles and three homers in his last 10 contests. In 20 games overall, he’s hit .385/.449/.551 with four doubles and three homers to go along with nine walks and nine strikeouts. He’s pretty batting average dependent (he owns a .166 isolated slugging) but he’s also hitting .385. If he had enough at bats to qualify, his .385 batting average would be second in the Venezuelan League and his on-base percentage would be tied for second.

Juan Lagares (Aguilas Cibaenas – DWL) –  Out of action since December 2. Still resting his knee, which was scheduled to keep him out for three weeks.

Can You Be the 25th Man in the Bullpen?
Joel Carreno (Escogido – DWL) – Carreno threw twice in the last week, with four strikeouts against one walk in 1.1 inning while allowing a run, his fifth in 17.1 innings to take his DWL ERA up to 2.08. He’s fanned 20 and walked six.

Jeurys Familia (Gigantes del Cibao – DWL) – Appeared in games on Monday and Wednesday, and recorded 10 outs, nine by strikeout. He walked one. Now in 6.2 innings in the Dominican, he’s running a 12/3 K/BB ratio.

Gonzlez Germen  (Toros del Este – DWL) – The 26-year-old has not appeared in a game since November 30.

 

See You in Sin City (Projected Las Vegas 51s on Opening Day 2014)
– C Juan Centeno
 – (Gigantes de Carolina – PWL) – The 24-year-old was 7-for-17 (.412) with no extra-base hits, no walks and two strikeouts. In 24 games in the PWL, he’s hit a batting average-heavy .309/.351/.397 with four extra-base hits and four walks.

- LHP Chase Huchingson (Aguilas del Zulia – VWL) – The 24-year-old made one appearance in the last week, giving up a run on two walks in 0.2 of an inning. In 5.1 innings over nine games in Venezuela, he’s walked eight and fanned five.

- OF Cesar Puello  (Toros del Este – DWL) – Puello was 3-for-15 with a double, a walk and two strikeouts this week in six games. The 22-year-old has hit a light .200/.252/.261 with a double, two homers and five walks against 30 strikeouts in 41 games in the Domincan this winter. He has cut down on the strikeouts in the last few weeks, but is certainly not hitting for much average.

- SS Wilfredo Tovar (Bravos de Margarita – VWL)  After 15 undistinguished games for Navegantes del Magallanes who apparently let him go, Tovar has joined Braves de Mararita, the same team that Wilmer Flores plays for. He was 5-for-15 this week with a double, two walks and a strikeout.

RHP Ryan Fraser (Leones de Ponce – PWL) – No appearances since November 17.

 

Bingo Bound/Hoping to break camp in AA
– INF TJ Rivera (Indios de Mayaguez PWL) – The 25-year-old was 1-for-3 with a homerun last Monday in Puerto Rico to push his winter line to .308/.357/.538 with a homer, a walk and one strikeout in nine games.
… The non-drafted free agent has worked his way up the Mets’ system in the last year culminating in a .289/.348/.351 line with two homers for St. Lucie while playing 111 games at second base and backing up 15 games at shortstop. He’s a pretty safe bet to begin 2014 at NYSEG stadium.

Xorge Carrillo (Aguilas de Mexicali – LMP) – The 24-year-old was 7-for-22 with a double and a homer in Mexico this week. In 50 games in the LMP, he’s hit .291/.353/.400 with nine doubles, three homers and 12 walks against 33 strikeouts. He’s an aggressive hitter, who has never played more than 36 games in a single US season. His nice winter should help him earn a job backing up Kevin Plawecki in AA in 2014 or maybe even Juan Centeno in AAA. One issue here: I think the LMP plays like an a-ball league, or lower.

- Jon Velasquez (Cangrejeros de Santurce – PWL) – The right-handed who the Mets just grabbed in the Rule 5 draft at the end of the Winter Meetings made a couple of outings last week. He’s pitched well in Puerto Rico with 20 strikeouts against six walks and just 17 hits allowed in 23.1 innings.

A-Ballers
-RHP Miller Diaz (Leones del Caracas VWL) – A starter in Brooklyn in 2013, Diaz will likely open 2014 in the Savannah rotation. He made two relief appearances this week, walking three and fanning two in 4.1 innings in Venezuela.

- TJ Rivera (Indios de Mayaguez – PWL) – No action since December 9.

- Juan Carlos Gamboa (Caneros de los Mochis – Liga Mexicana del Pacifico) – After hitting .195/.269/.271 in 32 games with Brooklyn in 2013 as a 22-year old while repeating the NYP League, Gamboa has bopped the Mexican Pacific League at a .340/.429/.472 clip in 21 games. He was 7-for-20 this past week with three walks and three strikeouts.

And Our Player of the Week…
Jeurys Familia
I like strikeouts and the Mets’ bullpen in recent years has been in general, a low strikeout group. Familia, if he can throw strikes could really help the big league team in 2014.

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