Even on a day when the New York Mets don’t play they get bad news.
It was announced on Monday that top pitching prospect Jenrry Mejia has a complete MCL tear of his right elbow and will require surgery. Mejia was examined by the Mets’ medical directors, but will get a second opinion. With the Mets' track record when it comes to injuries, I would say a second opinion would be smart.
If in fact Mejia does need surgery, he is expected to miss a year.
The 21-year-old was pitching in Triple-A for the Mets as a starter. There has been a lot of back and forth over the years as to whether or not Mejia should be a starter or reliever. He is Neftali Feliz-light.
According to the New York Daily News, Mets’ pitching coach Dan Warthen suggested in February that Mejia pitch out of the bullpen in the future because his delivery puts too much strain on his elbow. Perhaps the Mets should have listened to their pitching coach.
This is a big blow to the Mets because Mejia is by far the best pitching prospect in the organization. Yes, Matt Harvey is really good, but he is not in Mejia’s class just yet.
But other than those two, the Mets don’t have much else in terms of pitching depth in their organization. That’s not good when Chris Capuano, Chris Young and R.A. Dickey consist of three-fifths of your major league starting rotation.
At 21, Mejia will have plenty of time to rebound from this injury. It will be interesting to see what the Mets do with Mejia when he is able to pitch again. My guess is they will groom him as a closer.
Here are some other things you should know about Jenrry Mejia…
Drafted: Signed as an amateur free agent by the Mets out of the Dominican Republic.
Minor League Stats:
|AA (2 seasons)||AA||3.27||16||16||71.2||63||33||26||1.395||7.9||4.6||9.2|
|Rk (2 seasons)||Rk||1.00||4||4||18.0||13||2||2||0.944||6.5||2.0||9.0|
|AAA (2 seasons)||AAA||2.48||6||6||36.1||21||11||10||0.991||5.2||3.7||7.4|
|A+ (2 seasons)||A+||1.82||10||10||54.1||42||18||11||1.067||7.0||2.7||8.4|
|FRk (1 season)||FRk||2.47||14||7||43.2||24||17||12||1.168||4.9||5.6||9.7|
|A- (1 season)||A-||3.49||11||11||56.2||42||22||22||1.147||6.7||3.7||8.3|
Kevin Goldstein of Baseball Prospectus Analysis:
The Good: Mejia has pure power stuff. He generates both strikeouts and plenty of ground balls with a heavy 94-97 mph fastball that features natural sinking action. He’ll flash a plus power curveball, but his changeup is his best secondary offering, with plenty of deception and late fade. His wide shoulders and thick lower half give scouts fewer concerns then they have for most shorter-than-average pitchers.
The Bad: There are some concerns about Mejia’s ability to handle a full-season workload, as he’s missed considerable time each of the last two years and has yet to cross the triple-digit hump as far as innings. He can fall in love with his fastball and needs to work more on pitch sequencing as opposed to just blowing every hitter away. His velocity comes with some effort, and he can overthrow and lose his command.
Ephemera: During his six outings for Double-A Binghamton, Mejia did not allow a run after the second inning, a span of 14 2/3 innings.
Perfect World Projection: Mejia has the stuff to pitch toward the front of a rotation, and that’s where the Mets will try to develop him from here on out.
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