The Mets are really good at ruining young talent. We can take the best prospects and dash their hopes and dreams with the best of them. Besides Jose Reyes and David Wright can you name the last young prospects or home grown talent that the Mets have developed into stars?
Let's think, there was Generation K. Nope that didn't work out. There was Timo Perez, Benny Agbayani & Jay Payton. Yeah, that didn't work out either. Gotay? Check. David Segui. Nada.
You pretty much have to go back to Doc & Darryl. But the crazy thing is look at the young talent we've had that has gone wasted. Perfect example is Jeff Keppinger. Keppinger came up in the middle of the 2004 season and was hitting the cover off the ball for a mid-season call-up. He played a great defensive second base and was one of those spray hitters. I thought the Mets had found their second baseman for the next 5 or 6 years.
Then we traded him to the Royals. Where is he now? He's hitting .298 with a .403 slugging percentage for the Reds (P.S. he had a .477 slugging pct last year).
Keppinger is not the only one. Timo Perez came up with a spark in his bat and then faded quickly. Every young pitcher we've had has turned into a bust (you've been warned Mike Pelfrey). There's Ruben Gotay who we ran out of town after he was the most clutch Mets hitter for a period of time last season. Now we got Gimpy Castillo for the next couple of seasons.
Milledge? Wasn't he suppose to be the next big thing but the Mets couldn't quite get the reins in on him.
And now I'm seeing the same thing happen to Angel Pagan. Pagan started the season with a bang and now has been delegated to pinch hitting duties. No one in their right mind can expect Pagan to hit like he did in April without the chance to play on a regular basis.
Don't get me wrong. I love that Alou is back, but Pagan is going to hurt because of it. Sure next year might be his shot to play every day. But who knows how he'll play next season. If history tell us anything it's that his chances aren't great because the Mets can't mold young talent.
That has to change if we're going to be a competitive team in years to come.
May 05, 2008