In the Asdrubal Cabrera trade to the Philadelphia Phillies, the New York Mets got a talented young right-hander in Franklyn Kilome.
After most thought the New York Mets did not get a great return from the Oakland Athletics in a trade for Jeurys Familia, the organization did a lot better in an intra-division deal on Friday. By trading Asdrubal Cabrera to the Philadelphia Phillies, the Mets got back a talented right-handed pitching prospect named Franklyn Kilome.
For a two-month rental, the Mets got back the 10th best prospect in the Phillies farm system according to MLB Pipeline. Here is what they had to say about his pitch arsenal:
“Pure stuff-wise, Kilome is as good as just about any pitching prospect in the system, with a fastball that touches the upper-90s consistently combined with a curve that often flashes plus. His changeup has improved and it could eventually become an average third pitch, something softer to disrupt hitters’ timing. He’s generally around the strike zone, though his command has been inconsistent as he is still learning to get all of his 6-foot-6 frame in sync on a regular basis.”
The Phillies signed Kilome back in January 2013 out of the Dominican Republic. The 23-year-old has spent the entire season pitching for Double-A Reading. In 19 starts, he went 4-6 with a 4.24 ERA. As noted above, his command has been a big issue. In 102 innings pitched, he has 83 strikeouts and 51 walks.
While the walks have been high for Kilome, he has pitched better this month. In his last four starts, he is 2-1 with a 2.16 ERA and has 21 strikeouts to 13 walks in 25 innings. In those starts, he has pitched into the sixth inning or later in three of those outings.
With the high walk-rate, it is also concerning that the strikeout rate is so low. He was third on the Fightin Phils’ in K’s, but the 6-foot-6 pitcher has only had seven starts with six or more strikeouts.
Another thing to worry about with Kilome is that he has allowed seven home runs this season and that teams are hitting flyballs against him 39.7 percent of the time (FanGraphs). With that being the case, he needs to establish more swings-and-misses if he is going to stay in the rotation.
Over at Minor League Ball, Wayne Cavadi got the chance to watch Kilome pitch in the South Atlantic League Championship Series when he was with Low-A Lakewood. Here is what he had to say at the time when he went up against one of the Braves’ top prospects, Mike Soroka:
“He is learning to use his whole body, and fully extends as he comes at the plate, which I think has helped improved his command and, more importantly, consistency. A few times early on, you could see that he erred in his release point, and pushing the ball outside the zone (possibly overthrowing a bit as well), which account for two of his whopping three balls issued in the first inning, but those were minor blips on the radar of an otherwise spectacular night.”
Going forward, the question is going to be how the Mets decide to use Kilome. He could get some starts in September, but as Matt Gelb of The Athletic points out on Twitter, the Phillies were mixed as to how Kilome fits in their strong system:
Inside the organization, people were split on Kilomé’s future. Some saw a backend starter, others a middle reliever. Plus stuff, questionable command. Other SP in org leapfrogged him. https://t.co/CwD7VrYOUp
— Matt Gelb (@MattGelb) July 27, 2018
If the Mets decide to turn Kilome into a reliever, he becomes a candidate for a late-inning role in the future. With that being said, the team now has another quality starter in their top prospect list to go with Justin Dunn, so he can still get a chance as a starter.
All in all, for a two-month rental, the front office did a good job on their second deal compared to their first one with the Oakland A’s.