In preparation for the upcoming minor league season, the New York Mets made a small trimming of their system. Over the weekend the organization released left-handed pitcher Ben Griset, infielder Vinny Siena, and outfielder Arnaldo Berrios. Additionally, infielder Jose Maria was placed on the voluntarily retired list.
Griset, originally drafted by the Tampa Bay Rays in 2013, was signed by the Mets as a minor league free agent in January of 2015. Over the last three years, he pitched a full season each at Savannah, St. Lucie, and most recently, Binghamton. With the Rumble Ponies, Griset recorded a 2.39 ERA and held opponents to a .550 OPS. While the numbers were solid, his strikeout and walk rates deteriorated from 2016, and the climb to the major leagues for a low-minors free agent is incredibly steep.
Siena, the Mets’ 14th-round selection in 2015, hit .352 through his first 28 professional games but failed to build off the early success. Over the past two season, the former UConn Husky hit .232 with one home run between Columbia and St. Lucie.
It is admittedly impressive that Berrios, as a 39th-round draft pick from Puerto Rico, was able to grind out four seasons in the minor leagues, but the performance was just never there. His final career line will be a .216/.281/.291 clip, with four home runs and a career-high 30 RBI in 2015.
Berrios’ one shining moment, however, came during this year’s spring training. On the major league travel roster to face the Braves in Disney on February 28, the 5’9″, 154 lb. outfielder ripped a two-run home run in the top of the ninth inning to give the Mets a 6-4 victory over their division rival. Something to tell the grandchildren about.
Maria, a part-time catcher, played last season with the Brooklyn Cyclones and was one season away from hitting minor league free agency.