Opening Day 2013

Opening day for a four full season affiliates is today, including St. Lucie and Savannah home openers.

AAA: Las Vegas 51s (0-0) @ Sacramento River Cats [OAK] (0-0) Listen
Thursday 10:05 ET – RHP Zack Wheeler (0-0, 0.00) vs. LHP Andrew Werner (0-0, 0.00)

Las Vegas gets you used to the later starts with 14 of their first 16 games starting at 10 eastern.  Zack Wheeler kicks off his 2013 following Neise and Harvey against the Padres against the River Cats.  While in the Padres system Andrew Werner finished 2012 with 4 starts in the PCL allowing 32 base runners while striking out 20 in 23.1 IP.  AmazinAvenue’s Steve Sypa finds an interesting comp for Wilmer Flores in the Padres Jedd Gyorko.

AA: Binghamton Mets (0-0) @ Akron Aeros [CLE] (0-0) Listen
Thursday 6:35 ET – RHP Rafael Montero (0-0, 0.00) vs. RHP Danny Salazar (0-0, 0.00)

This is the fourth consecutive season in which Binghamton and Akron open against each other.   Rafael Montero was one of the high profile prospects in spring training and gets the opener for the AA Mets.  Across two levels in 2012 Montero struck out 110 and walked 19 in 122 IP.  Batters only managed to hit .212 despite all that pitching in the zone.   Danny Salazar had a strong 2012 as a 22 year old finishing up with 6 starts in AA in which he went 4-0, 1.85

A+: Jupiter Hammerheads [MIA] (0-0) @ St. Lucie Mets (0-0) Listen
Thursday 6:30 ET – LHP Justin Nicolino (0-0, 0.00) vs. RHP Hansel Robles (0-0, 0.00)

The FSL Mets stay right where they were and open the year with two against the Hammerheads at home before heading to Jupiter for two more.  With 41 homers over the last two years Aderlin Rodriguez is the clear power threat in the Mets system.  His numbers dropped off a bit after being promoted to the FSL due to a decrease in walks.  While repeating the SAL in early 2012 Aderlin managed to double his walk rate and increase his SLG nearly 200 pts from year before.  If he repeats this progress in the FSL this year we might have something special.  In one year Hansel Robles has gone from being a 22 year old who had never pitched above rookie ball, to the big league 40 man roster and opening day starter in the FSL.  He led the New York-Penn League in ERA and ranked fifth in strikeouts in 2012, and did not allow an earned run over his final 36 innings… earning him a jump to Advanced A ball.  former Blue Jays 2nd round pick Justin Nicolino was a teammate of Noah Syndergaard last year in Lansing where he went 10-4, 2.46 with 119 K to 21 BB.

A: Rome Braves [ATL] (0-0) @ Savannah Sand Gnats (0-0) Listen
Thursday 6:35 ET – RHP Rafael Briceno (0-0, 0.00) vs. RHP Matt Bowman (0-0, 0.00)

Savannah hosts the 2012 SAL southern division winner Rome who finish 16.5 games ahead of the Gnats last year. These two teams will play eight times in the first 11 days of the season.  Matt Bowman, the New York Mets 13th round pick (No. 410 overall) of the 2012 Draft out of Princeton University, is Frank Viola’s choice to start the opener.  He made nine starts for Princeton last year before the Mets limited to him 2-3 IP outings for Brooklyn in which he racked up 30 K and 2 BB in 29.1 IP.  Rafael Briceno went 3-6, 6.55 for Rome last year, allowing batters to hit .332

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