Mark Vientos Called Up by Mets as Team Seeks Offense

The Mets have referred to as up Mark Vientos, a power-hitting infielder who ranks as the workforce’s sixth greatest prospect within the minors.

Vientos, 23, was hitting .333 with 13 house runs, 37 runs batted in and a 1.104 on-base plus slugging share in 38 video games for Class AAA Syracuse this season — he was 2 for five with a house run in final night time’s loss.

He has expertise at first base, third base and outfield, however to get his bat within the lineup the best path can be as a delegated hitter, the place he may be a part of this season’s different rookies, catcher Francisco Álvarez and third baseman Brett Baty, as hopeful. indicators of the Mets’ future.

Expectations have been sky excessive for the Mets after final 12 months’s 101-win season and an low season spending spree by which Steven A. Cohen, the workforce’s billionaire proprietor, allowed for the payroll to surge to just about $350 million, which can balloon much more down the street due to Major League Baseball’s multi-tier luxurious tax system.

So far nearly nothing has gone proper. The workforce misplaced to the Tampa Bay Rays, 8-5, on Tuesday, dropping their report to 20-23 — six and a half video games behind Atlanta within the National League East. They are additionally a recreation and a half behind the Miami Marlins for the NL’s third wild-card spot.

While the Mets’ largest drawback has been pitching, with their starters combining for a 5.46 ERA, offense has additionally been a difficulty. The workforce is ranked nineteenth in OPS — a measurement that displays each the workforce’s skill to get on base (on-base share) and to hit for energy (slugging share) — twenty first in runs and is tied for twentieth in house runs.

The workforce’s most useful batters this season have been first baseman Pete Alonso (13 house runs) and heart fielder Brandon Nimmo (.830 OPS) however even they’ve performed considerably beneath expectations. Vientos may theoretically present a spark, notably in comparison with the workforce’s most steadily used possibility amongst its reserves, outfielder Tommy Pham, who has hit .188 in 81 plate appearances.

Vientos was solely 17 in 2017 when the Mets made him a second-round pick of American Heritage High School in Plantation, Fla. He had a 16-game call-up to the majors final season, and disenchanted by going 6 for 36 with one house run and 12 strikeouts. But he completely crushed the ball within the excessive minors. In 150 video games at Class AAA over elements of the final three seasons, he has hit .294 with 40 house runs and a .566 slugging share.

A below-average runner, he has not displayed quite a lot of promise defensively, which limits his general worth, and his greatest place will most certainly be first base, which the Mets hope will likely be occupied by Alonso for years to come back.

Vientos, not less than on a short-term foundation, has the potential to carve out common taking part in time at DH or within the outfield, which might imply the Mets are counting on three minimum-salary rookies regardless of having the best payroll in MLB historical past.

Neither Baty, who was referred to as up in a similar way to Vientos final season solely to maintain a season-ending harm, nor Álvarez has been notably spectacular with their bats, however each have held their very own defensively at troublesome positions, which has helped preserve them within the lineup. Vientos might want to justify his roster spot together with his bat.

Outside of Vientos, the highest prospect within the Mets system, when it comes to main league readiness, is Ronny Mauricio, a shortstop who’s hitting .354 with seven house runs for Syracuse.

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