Just Call Him Up Already
In case you missed it, Zack Wheeler had another great outing on Saturday night. Wheeler, the New York Mets’ top pitching prospect, threw 7 1/3 innings of two-run ball and struck out seven on Saturday for Triple-A Las Vegas. He gave up six hits and walked one.
According to ESPN, over his last three starts, Wheeler has thrown a combined 20 innings, surrendering just three earned runs . He’s struck out 19 in that span, allowing 14 hits. Most importantly, he has walked only three batters. Something has clicked.
It’s time to bring him up. I have run out of adjectives to describe the team’s play: terms like dismal, boring, depressing can only be used so many times before they lose their impact. This year’s team was given little chance to do anything before the season even began, but I don’t think anyone really realized just how bad things would get so quickly. Wheeler is certainly not the answer to all of the Mets’ woes, but together, perhaps he and Matt Harvey can provide somewhat of a firewall, the way Tom Seaver and Jerry Koosman did for the team back in 1968. Zack isn’t doing the Mets any good in Las Vegas.
And yes, I disparaged him somewhat in my last post, but I think Wilmer Flores should get called up also.
In their place, I would send Ike Davis and Jordany Valdespin down. Let Ike hit his next 25 homeruns in the PCL so they can trade him next winter. I say this only as a distant observer, but I wonder if being the son of a major leaguer and now playing in the big leagues himself has gone to Ike’s head. I am nowhere near the clubhouse, but he seems somewhat sullen and I wonder if there isn’t an entitlement mentality at work here. Keith Hernandez did hint at that a few years ago. That was a terrible at bat he had in the eight inning of Sunday’s loss. Remember when the Pirates offered the Mets Sterling Marte for him?
Valdespin was hung out to dry this past weekend. He has a lot of talent and I hope that whoever is running the club next spring can reach him. Those long bus trips in the PCL may give him some time to ponder turning over a new leaf.
Set up a Daniel Murphy/Justin Turner platoon at first and let Flores take some reps at second. Since the Mets aren’t going to hit at all this year, I suggest going with defense in the outfield; that means Juan Lagares in center and Mike Baxter in right. I would put Murphy/Turner in the two hole, David Wright in the three spot, Lucas Duda cleanup. For the remainder, whoever is hot can lead off (imagine if that is John Buck!) with the rest of the lineup balanced right/left as best as possible. I don’t think this translates into winning baseball, but it might be watchable, which I would take at this point.
What do you think? Time to bring up Wheeler? Got any other (reasonable) moves in mind? Sound off below.