MMN Weekly Report: Kay Dazzling in Columbia

By Jacob Resnick

April 23, 2018 No comments

Photo by Ed Delany

Week In Review

The Las Vegas 51s (5-13, fourth in the Pacific Coast League Pacific Southern division) have dropped seven of their last nine contests. In a Friday loss, the team used two position players, Matt den Dekker and Colton Plaia, to pitch.

The Binghamton Rumble Ponies (6-8, fourth in the Eastern League Eastern division) won on Friday thanks to a pair of RBI from Tim Tebow, who has posted a .214/.267/.357 clip through 12 games. Binghamton’s 36 walks issued are tops in the league.

The St. Lucie Mets (7-9, sixth in the Florida State League South division) own the league’s lowest average (.217) and OPS (.621). After losing five of six on their recent road trip, they return to First Data Field for a seven-game homestand as they look to get back on track.

The Columbia Fireflies (11-6, first in the South Atlantic League Southern division), the only affiliate playing at least .500 ball thus far, lead their league in average (.277), on-base percentage (.372), hits (159), and pitching strikeouts (182).

Mets Minors News & Buzz

The Mets agreed to minor league contracts with a pair of former major leaguers, inking Vance Worley and Scott Copeland. Both pitchers reported to Extended Spring Training. Meanwhile, A.J. Griffin was released after two unspectacular outings. Read more here.

Gerson Bautista, the high octane arm acquired last summer for Addison Reed, was recalled from Binghamton last week to make his major league debut. In 2.1 innings, the 22-year-old struck out two, issued four walks, and allowed two runs on three hits. Read more here.

Former Mets prospect Merandy Gonzalez made his major league debut on Thursday for the Miami Marlins, tossing two scoreless innings against Milwaukee. Gonzalez was dealt least season with Ricardo Cespedes for AJ Ramos, and became the first former Firefly to reach the major leagues.

Justin Dunn made the April 16 version of the Baseball America hot sheet. Read more here.

Who’s Hot, Who’s Not

Who’s hot: 

Two years after the Mets took him in the first round of the 2016 Draft, Anthony Kay has hit the ground running in Columbia.

Through three starts, the 23-year-old is 1-0 with a 1.69 ERA, 0.75 WHIP, and 14 strikeouts against three walks. It’s an encouraging start for a promising prospect who had been essentially forgotten by some heading into the 2018 campaign.

On video, Kay has looked stellar, hitting all of his spots and breaking off some beautiful offspeed pitches. While a dip in velocity post-Tommy John surgery is to be expected, he has generally been sitting at a solid 95-96 miles per hour. Going forward, it will be imperative for Kay to continue limiting free passes, and in time, a promotion to St. Lucie is inevitable.

It wasn’t clear if Edgardo Fermin would start the 2018 season in Columbia or Extended, but the 19-year-old has put any doubts to rest with his recent play for the Fireflies. Entering Sunday, Fermin was hitting .305/.349/.508 with four doubles, four triples, and 12 runs scored. He’s shown impressive power, which wasn’t always evident during his 23-game stint with Brooklyn last season.

He’s been adept at shortstop, but his athleticism allowed him to even make one start in the outfield. Fermin has also been above-average on the basepaths, giving him a potentially solid power/speed profile. There’s no reason to rush him now, but once Fermin begins to grow into his frame, the Mets may have another exciting middle infield prospect on their hands.

Who’s not: 

After an inhuman start to the 2018 season, Ty Kelly has only one hit in his last 25 at-bats. His Las Vegas teammate, P.J. Conlon has started the year with a 10.22 ERA and a .339 opponents average through his first three Triple-A starts.

Organizational Leaders

AVG — Walter Rasquin .342 (COL), Peter Alonso .340 (BNG), Blake Tiberi .340 (COL), Zach Borenstein .323 (LVG), Dan Rizzie .320 (STL/COL)

OPS — Scott Manea 1.100 (COL), Alonso 1.034, Borenstein 1.021, Vasquez .953, Rasquin .943

HR — Borenstein 4, Ty Kelly 4 (LVG), Alonso 3, Bryce Brentz 3 (LVG), Jeff McNeil 3 (BNG)

RBI — Borenstein 15, Jeremy Vasquez 13 (COL), Kelly 12, Brentz 11, Quinn Brodey 11 (COL)

SB — Ian Strom 5 (STL), Andres Gimenez 4 (STL), Four tied with 3

STARTER ERA — Nabil Crismatt 1.10 (BNG), Justin Dunn 1.26 (STL), Anthony Kay 1.69 (COL), Joe Cavallaro 1.89 (COL), Chris Viall 2.00 (COL)

RELIEVER ERA — Six tied with 0.00

SO — Drew Gagnon 27 (LVG/BNG), Crismatt 21, Tony Dibrell 20 (COL), Dunn 19, Cavallaro 18

SV — Tyler Bashlor 2 (BNG), Trey Cobb 2 (COL), Stephen Villines 2 (COL), Eight tied with 1

WHIP — Bashlor 0.30, Carlos Hernandez 0.38 (STL/COL), Gerson Bautista 0.40 (BNG), Ryder Ryan 0.62 (STL), Kay 0.75

Transaction Report

4/16

Michael Gibbons activated from St. Lucie’s disabled list….Gary Cornish placed on St. Lucie’s disabled list….Mickey Jannis transferred from Las Vegas to Binghamton….Johnny Monell transferred from Extended Spring Training to Las Vegas.

4/17

A.J. Griffin activated from Las Vegas’ temporarily inactive list….Patrick Biondi placed on Las Vegas’ temporarily inactive list….Johnny Magliozzi transferred from Extended Spring Training to Binghamton….Hansel Robles optioned to Las Vegas….Gerson Bautista recalled from Binghamton….Scott Copeland signed as a minor league free agent and assigned to Extended Spring Training….Mickey Jannis placed on Binghamton’s disabled list.

4/18

A.J. Griffin released from Las Vegas….Marcel Renteria placed on Columbia’s disabled list….David Peterson transferred from Extended Spring Training to Columbia….Hector Ayuso signed as an international free agent….Vance Worley signed as a minor league free agent and assigned to Extended Spring Training.

4/19

Ali Sanchez transferred from Extended Spring Training to Columbia….Carlos Sanchez transferred from St. Lucie to Extended Spring Training….Dan Rizzie transferred from Columbia to St. Lucie….Patricio Diaz transferred from DSL Mets2 to DSL Mets1.

4/20

Aaron Ford transferred from Extended Spring Training to Columbia….Cannon Chadwick released from Columbia….Kelly Secrest activated from Las Vegas’ disabled list….Logan Taylor placed on Las Vegas’ disabled list.

4/21

Patrick Biondi activated from Las Vegas’ temporarily inactive list….Corey Oswalt recalled from Las Vegas….Gerson Bautista optioned to Binghamton.

4/22

Jamie Callahan placed on Las Vegas’ disabled list….Andrew Ely placed on Binghamton’s disabled list….Nick Sergakis activated from Binghamton’s disabled list….Marcos Molina transferred from Binghamton to Las Vegas….Briam Campusano transferred from Extended Spring Training to St. Lucie….Michael Gibbons transferred from St. Lucie to Binghamton.

Upcoming Schedules

Las Vegas: El Paso (4/23), OFF (24), @ Albuquerque (25-29), Sacramento (30-5/3)

Binghamton: New Hampshire (4/23-25), @ Erie (27-29), @ Akron (30-5/2)

St. Lucie: Charlotte (4/23-25), Palm Beach (26-29), OFF (30)

Columbia: @ Charleston (4/23-26), @ Augusta (27-29), OFF (30)

As a reminder, all 51s, Rumble Ponies, and select Fireflies games can be seen on MiLB.tv.