May 05, 2008

The Mets are Good at Ruining Young Talent

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.


Ceetar said...

Truly great players can't be ruined. They'd find a way into the lineup. They'd find a way to hit, no matter where, or when. The few guys you mentioned, have had some limited success by playing consistantly elsewhere, but nothing that makes us rue the day we traded them. Even Kazmir has been very injury prone. Payton? Keppinger? These aren't great players, they're guys that have had some success when they've gotten the opportunity to play regularly, something the Mets couldn't afford to do and win. Do you remember that Timo was a big part of the not hitting that cost us the world series? that Generation K couldn't stay healthy? Neither could Payton, which was a big issue when he needed the regularity to play every day. Gotay's success was probably a flash in the pan, something that probably has a lot to do with excitement of being given a chance, plus the limited scouting report available to opposing pitchers. Gotay had Delgado and the Mets to tell him out to hit every pitcher he faced last year, but who could those pitchers ask about how to pitch to him?

Why do you think debut pitchers often have brilliant performances?

In a sense, I like to see young guys given a chance, but if you truly want to win, you can't hope that even though he failed in the first 300 ABs, he's going to figure it out in the next 300, if you want to win this year. That's why Alou is here instead of Milledge, and why the Mets have kept El Duque around. Just look at how Pelfrey is pitching.

Kyle said...

By the way, Keppinger was a poor to average defenisve second baseman while anderson hernandez was regarded as his counterpart