While the MLB postseason continues, some of the top New York Mets prospects get set to begin Arizona Fall League play on Tuesday.
The New York Mets 2018 season may be over for the major league club, but not for some of their top prospects. On Tuesday, eight players from the Mets farm system will begin playing in the Arizona Fall League for the Scottsdale Scorpions.
The AFL is a good league for minor league players and prospects to continue to develop and play against some of the best young players in the organization. The Mets have two core pieces of their future taking part in this league in first baseman Peter Alonso and infielder Andres Gimenez.
Alonso showed off his power at Double-A Binghamton and Triple-A Las Vegas this year, which has fans excited for his potential major league debut next season. He had a slash line of .285/.395/.579 with 31 doubles, 36 home runs, and 118 RBIs. While the strikeouts were high, he showed good plate discipline with 78 walks in 132 games.
As for Gimenez, the 20-year-old shortstop is another rising star in the organization. While Amed Rosario has shortstop locked up for the time being, Gimenez is a player that can push him for that spot since he has limited experience at second base (15 games). This season, he had 38 stolen bases in 122 games with Binghamton and High-A St. Lucie.
For those two players, it is a chance for them to show why they are some of the top prospects at their respective positions in the entire sport. Both players had a similar opportunity in July when they played in the SiriusXM Futures Game in Washington D.C.
The other position players that will represent the Mets are catcher Ali Sanchez and outfielder Desmond Lindsay. Sanchez hit .265 with six home runs and 38 RBIs in 88 games for Low-A Columbia and St. Lucie. As for his defense, he caught 31 of 74 batters trying to steal in 2018.
Lindsay was a second-round pick by the Mets in 2015 and has battled injuries over the past two seasons. Since he played in 90 games this year, he has the chance to get more games in for Scottsdale and use it as a possible springboard into next year. He was tied for the St. Lucie lead in triples with five.
On the pitching side, the Mets do not have any starting pitchers in Arizona. However, they do have four pitchers that will appear out of the bullpen. Gerson Bautista is known for his electric fastball. However, he did have a 5.14 ERA and opponents hit .314 against him in 37 games out in Las Vegas.
Bautista was traded to the Mets in the Addison Reed deal back in 2017 along with Stephen Nogosek. Nogosek had a rough time at Binghamton this year as he had the same amount of walks as strikeouts (21) and had an 8.10 ERA in 16 games for the Rumble Ponies.
Matt Blackham was not a high draft pick by the Mets (29th Round pick in 2014). With that being said, opponents only had a .170 batting average against him in 39 appearances this year at St. Lucie and Binghamton.
Finally, Joe Zanghi was able to pitch at three different levels this season from High-A to Triple-A. He had 49 strikeouts to 16 walks in 61 innings of work and he got opponents to hit a groundball about 44 percent of the time for Las Vegas (via FanGraphs).