Kevin Plawecki, Jayce Boyd and Bret Mitchell have all been promoted to advanced-A St. Lucie.
Plawecki, the Mets’ supplemental finished up with SAL lead in doubles as part of a .314/.390/.494 line. He was the best prospect to move Thursday: he has more power than Boyd and plays a more premium position. Plawecki (pictured) was the SAL’s best hitter in the first month of the season: from Opening Night on April 4 through May 14, he hit .375/.439/.654 with 27 XBH, 11 BB and 17 K in 36 games. Then he got a little colder: from May 15-June 16, Plawecki hit a much softer .239/.328/.294 in his last 29 games in the SAL with 4 XBH, 12 BB and 15 K. He insisted to me last week that he felt the same at the plate although he acknowledged that pitchers were working him differently recently. I thought, in terms of approach, that at times he got too aggressive in the last few weeks. Physically, he seemed off-balance as well perhaps from lunging or overstriding – I’m honestly not sure. Anyway, he’s a fine receiver behind the plate who has pop, does not strike out and is a fine catching prospect. His arm is the weakest part of his game although he threw out 31% of opposing runners (16-for-51) in the SAL.
Boyd, finished his time in the SAL with an eight-game hitting streak to push his line to .361/.441/.494 in 65 games, good enough to lead the SAL in batting average and on-base percentage. The 22-year-old had an absurd final series against the Greenville Drive, going 11-for-13 with a triple, two homers and six walks in the four-game set. Put another way, Greenville retired him in only two of their 19 opportunities. The 22-year-old has a nice swing from the right side and is comfortable shooting the ball into right field. His homers come when he yanks a pitch out to left. His hands work fine at first base, but his arm is well below average. The question for Boyd is whether he can find more leverage and power in his swing. First basemen are expected to hit homeruns, and he had five through the first 65 games of the year. National League teams have a tough time carrying true 1B-only backups, like Boyd.
Mitchell is a sleeper of a relief prospect. He missed all of last year with a labrum tear in his hip and came back throwing 92-94 out of the bullpen this year with a curveball at 81-83 that has a chance to be a plus pitch in the big leagues. The Gnats’ catchers told me his changeup was pretty darn good too, but he didn’t need it out of the bullpen, and I saw it so little, it is more myth than reality as far as I’m concerned. Mitchell fanned 33.9% of opposing batters (41 of 121) and ran a K/BB ratio of 5.9. Barring injury, he’ll pitch at AA certainly and has the stuff to be a capable MLB reliever.