Cesar Puello Had a Historic Month of June

By Matt Musico

July 1, 2013 11 Comments

cesar puello

We all knew Cesar Puello was having a ridiculous month of June, but how good did it end up, now that the calendar has flipped to July? He put together a .441/.465/.897 line, good enough for a 1.362 OPS in 68 at-bats. This amazing 17 game stretch has yielded him a 1.013 OPS in 232 at-bats this season, which leads me to this…

Yea.

It’s safe to say that other people have taken notice of the fantastic 2013 campaign Puello has put together. He’s been under speculation about the ongoing biogenesis scandal and investigation, but he hasn’t let that distract him on the field. He’s now hitting .336/.401/.612 on the year, with 15 home runs, 55 RBIs, 51 runs scored, and 18 stolen bases for what could be considered the best team in Binghamton franchise history.

Puello’s performance has been a big reason why the B-Mets have already reached the 50-win plateau prior to July 1st. Outside of a minor injury in the middle of June, he’s been able to stay healthy and remain in the lineup virtually every night.

In looking at his season splits, there is no weakness in the slugging outfielder’s game in 2013. He’s virtually hitting just as well during the day (.344 BA) as he is at night (.333 BA), and he’s capitalized when he’s comes to the plate with runners in scoring position (.347 BA, 37 RBIs in 72 at-bats).

What jumped off the page at me is what he’s done against left-handed pitching this season. While most of his at-bats and production has come against right-handers (173 of 232 ABs), Puello has torn up southpaws in 59 at-bats. He’s currently hitting .458/.508/.966 with eight home runs and 21 RBIs. Talk about being a game-changer in the middle of a lineup! When an opposing manager has a lefty on the mound late in the game with Puello coming up, you better believe he’ll have to make a move to the bullpen to keep the contest close.

All in all, Puello is having a fantastic season. He’s finally been able to perform the way scouts projected him to, and he’s using all the tools he has to be successful. While we found out last week that a promotion to Triple-A may not be imminent for him, I personally don’t think sending Puello to Vegas will do anything. If he continues to hit the way he’s hit over the last month, this Eastern League All-Star deserves a September call-up, at the very least. Going to the hitter-friendly PCL isn’t going to change anyone’s opinion on him.

Results of the biogenesis investigation and any potential suspension coming his way could throw a wrench into those plans, but he’s currently on the Mets 40-man roster. If given the chance, New York needs to promote Puello to see what potential he has at the big league level before the 2013 season is over.

Do you think the Mets should promote Puello straight from Binghamton, or would you like to see him hit in Triple-A first?

(photo courtesy of Gordon Donovan)

  • ROTK

    Puello’s season says a lot of things, but one thing that jumps out for me is this is a great example of why the lay fan shouldn’t jump to conclusions about prospects at very young ages and at lower levels. Far too many people probably wrote him off after last season and look at him now.

    I’m not saying Nimmo ever becomes Puello, but its a good lesson why people shouldn’t be killing Nimmo right now. Young guys develop. They grow. They mature. You can’t possibly write someone off at 19 or 20 years old at Class A. You especially can’t do it by reading box scores every couple of days.

  • Sach

    I don’t think Cesar needs to play at AAA or AAA for any extended period of time ( 4 months or more). I certainly would like to see this kid in at least a Sept. cameo with the Mets to see where he stands vs. major league competition if he isn’t suspended.

  • Matt Musico

    This is a great point! I totally agree. We can’t say this happens to Nimmo, but the type of player he is could be drastically different in two or three years, depending on how he physically and mentally matures.

  • Matt Musico

    Thanks for reading and for opinion. I’m anxious to see how he looks in the big leagues, depending on whether or not he has to serve a suspension.

  • Sach

    ROTK- really good point regarding Nimmo and even Gavin, Dom Smith and Ivan Wilson for that matter. Especially with the younger kids, it’s a process of figuring things out, them learning to adjust to the daily grind of pro ball and their bodies filling out. I personally pay no attention whatsoever to stats and performance in the lower minors for the GCL Mets, Kingsport Mets , the Brooklyn Cyclones or even the Low A Sand Gnats for that matter. I start paying attention to a prospect or possible prospect only when they reach High A ball.

  • Joe Gomes

    Mets should send him to Vegas and then bring him up once Byrd gets traded to take over RF. Having Young and Puello in the same lineup gives the Mets much needed speed.

    Young LF, Lagares/DenDekker platoon CF, Puello RF may very well be the 2014 outfield lineup.

    The Mets need this kind of energy from the young up and coming players.

  • ROTK

    Don’t disagree about him coming up at some point, but I don’t see any reason for a stop in Vegas.

  • cmckearney

    It’s kinda interesting to me that the Mets, at least in the past few years, have done a good job of having their prospects exceed the expectations of the majority. Not sure if that’s a product of them having prospects focus on weaknesses before advancing or not, but I think Puello can join a pretty significant list of players who were initially written off, before flourishing at higher levels and, eventually, the big leagues. Niese, Gee, Hefner, Murphy and even Duda were never top prospects, but found varying levels of success at the big leagues. Heck, even Harvey wasn’t too too highly regarded before dominating in the bigs. So while Puello might not crack anyone’s top 50 or even 100 anymore, don’t be surprised if he shows them all once he gets up here. Great job by the minor league coaching staffs.

  • ROTK

    Any chance the Mets keep him down longer because of the biogenesis thing. What I mean is, right now. most of the baseball public has never heard this kid’s name. To most, he’s an unnamed minor league player from the list. If he is brought up to the bigs, the discussion about his inclusion on the list intensifies, at least a bit. It certainly gets mentioned in every NY Media single story about his promotion and any immediate success he might have.

  • Metlosopher

    If Puello doesnt crack the top-50 lists, you need to start questioning those lists.

    He is one of the youngest players in the Eastern league having a monstrous season. His tools (read ceiling) have never been in question and he had improved significantly this year.

    What else do you want before rating him a very very good prospect. Personally, I would bring him up soon to see what we have.

  • mike

    Cesar Puello is good, but he can’t hit a slider. He is a dead red fastball hitter. Maybe an solid starter, but don’t expect a star.

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