2003 Scouting Report: RHP, Aaron Heilman

Aaron Heilman was the Mets' 1st selection in the 2001 draft out of Notre Dame University. Heilman compiled a 36-4 record in his final 3 seasons at Notre Dame when he was a 3-time All-American. He also pitched for TeamUSA in 2000 as the #2 SP behind Lenny Dinardo, Phil Seibel also pitched for that team. Bob Keppel stayed with Heilman when he visited Notre Dame where Keppel signed to play basketball and baseball.

Heilman has not been as dominant as in 2003. He was dominant early but has tailed off in his past 6-7 starts that appeared to coincide with Jose Reyes going on DL with a hamstring injury. His ratios for this season at Norfolk are:9.2 hits per 9 IP; 3.1 BB per 9 IP and 6.8 K per 9 IP. Overall, the ratios aren't much better than his 2002 season at Norfolk: 7.4 H per 9 IP; 2.9 BB per 9 IP; and 6.5 K per IP.


































St. Lucie







*Stats as of 6/23/03.

Repertoire. 4-seam fastball (FB), slider (SL), split-fingered fastball (spl FB) and circle change (CU).

Fastball. Heilman's fastball sat at 92-93 mph and tops out at 95 mph. He is not expected to add much if any velocity to his fastball. Heilman's fastball has excellent movement that he can make run (right to left) or sink with boring action.

Other Pitches. Heilman possesses an excellent SL but at times lacks consistency with it. He has a solid spl.FB which now serves as K-pitch and is developing his CU.

Pitching. Heilman is extremely durable and understands how to pitch. He has great command. When Heilman is on his game, he constantly has hitters in 0-1 or 0-2 counts. He works both sides of the plate against both left-handed and right-handed hitters. Improving command of his slider is critical to his success. The progress on his CU is extremely slow.

Projection. Heilman projects to eventually develop into a #2 or #3 starter.

ETA. 2003. He should be a solid #4 pitcher in 2003. And, improve in 2004 and beyond probably peaking in 2005/2006.

Starting Pitchers Team
Jeremy Griffiths AAA - Norfolk Tides
Patrick Strange AAA - Norfolk Tides
Jake Joseph AAA - Norfolk Tides
Phil Seibel AAA - Norfolk Tides
Jason Roach AAA - Norfolk Tides
Aaron Heilman AAA - Norfolk Tides
Bob Keppel AA - Binghamton Mets
David Mattox AA - Binghamton Mets
Joseph Cole AA - Binghamton Mets
Neal Musser AA - Binghamton Mets
Lenny Dinardo AA - Binghamton Mets
Matthew Peterson A- St. Lucie Mets
Kevin Deaton A- St. Lucie Mets
Ross Peeples A- St. Lucie Mets
Wayne Ough A- St. Lucie Mets
Kenneth Chenard A- St. Lucie Mets
Miguel Pinango A - Capital City Bombers
Yunior Cabrera A - Capital City Bombers
Matthew Lindstrom A - Capital City Bombers
Scott Kazmir A - Capital City Bombers
Adam Elliot A - Brooklyn Cyclones


Starting pitching remains the deepest part of the Mets farm system. Aside from the great depth, Kazmir, Peterson, Keppel and Elliott have real high ceilings. Both Jake Joseph and Jason Scobie project better as RP's than SPs, so aren't included in the list below. Ross Peoples has struggled mightily at St. Lucie. Joey Cole is beginning to look more like a long RP/spot SP rather than a #5 SP.

1. Scott Kazmir (LHP) remains the gem of the farm system's deep core of pitching prospects. He's improved his CU and needs to work on his command and build arm strength. Kazmir won't be rule 5 draft eligible until after 2005.

2. Aaron Heilman (RHP) remains ready to lend an arm to the Mets in 2003. The Mets want him to become a bit more consistent especially with his SL. Heilman will be rule 5 draft eligible after 2003, but is likely to be on the Mets roster this season.

3. Matthew Peterson (RHP) remains the RHP with the highest ceiling and has been outstanding in 2003 despite a delay due to a minor arm ailment. Peterson will be rule 5 draft eligible after 2003.

4. Patrick Strange (RHP) has had a cup of coffee with the Mets in 2003. He remains a quality prospect, but needs to develop another quality pitch and his spl. FB sits in his back pocket waiting to be reused. Strange's minor surgery to remove a bone spur hasn't slowed him in 2003 at all. Strange is on the 40-man roster.

5. Jeremy Griffiths (RHP) also probably needs another plus pitch to be a quality SP, but his deceptive motion projects him to be a closer as he repeats his arm slot on FB, SL and CU. Griffiths is on the 40-man roster.

6. Bob Keppel (RHP) has good command and an extensive arsenal of pitches. He still needs to fill out and maintain the velocity on his fastball. Keppel will be rule 5 draft eligible after 2003.

7. David Mattox (RHP) possesses 5 pitches with good movement and will be as good as his command. Mattox will be rule 5 draft eligible after 2003.

8. Lenny DiNardo (LHP) is finally demonstrating the promise that projected him as a potential first rounder in the 2003 draft. He still needs for his velocity to return to the 90-91 mph range. Great command of CB and CU. DiNardo will be rule 5 draft eligible after 2003.

9. Miguel Pinango (RHP), the strike throwing machine, is having an outstanding season. Pinango will be rule 5 draft eligible after 2003.

10. Adam Elliott (RHP) has not pitched yet in 2003 and is likely to begin the season with Brooklyn. He challenges Peterson and Keppel as having the highest ceiling after Kazmir. Elliot will be rule 5 draft eligible after 2005.

11. Neal Musser (LHP} has been healthy in 2003 and has pitched extremely well after being promoted to Binghamton. Musser was rule 5 draft eligible after 2002 and will be again after 2003.

12. Phil Seibel (LHP} has a nice mix of pitches that should make him an effective MLB pitcher. Most likely an end of the rotation SP, but has demonstrated his ability to pitch effectively out of the bullpen. Seibel will be rule 5 draft eligible for the first time in 2003.

13. Wayne Ough (RHP) is now in the mix with the improved command and addition of a quality CU. Ough will be rule 5 draft eligible for the second time after 2003.

14. Luz Portabanco (RHP) remains a SP prospect, but will decline rapidly if he doesn't begin to be productive. He possesses the repertoire to be a front end SP. Portabanco will be rule 5 draft eligible for the first time after 2003.

15. Kenneth Chenard (RHP), along with Ough and Nick Maness, possesses the best stuff of any pitchers in the organization. However, he's like Casper the Ghost because he disappears on to the DL much to often. Chenard is rule 5 draft eligible for the third time after 2003.

16. Yunior Cabrera (LHP) who's likely to a RP, but has enough repertoire to start. Cabrera will be rule 5 draft eligible for either his second or third time.

17. Brian Walker (LHP), finally healthy in 2003, should he regain his 90-91 mph FB, then he has enough stuff to be a SP. Otherwise his future as a SP is in doubt. Walker will be rule 5 draft eligible for the first time after 2003.

18. Matthew Lindstrom (RHP) has good stuff, but he lacks experience and coaching. His start at Columbia has been surprisingly good. Might be holding off shift to bullpen. Lindstrom will be rule 5 draft eligible for the first time after 2004.

19. I'll add short season talent as their season begins. Since the Venezuelan Summer League has already begun, 2 good second year prospects remained there who are having outstanding seasons. Yusemeiro Petit, perhaps, the best of 2nd year pitchers should begin this season with Kingsport. Jose Sanchez (3-1, 1.76, 30.7) and Javier Perdomo (3-2, 1,53, 29.3) are having outstanding seasons. Sanchez has allowed 22 hits, issued 7 BB and struck out 36. Perdomo in his 1st season as a SP has allowed 15 hits, issued 2 BB and struck out 40. All three are RHPs. Petit, Sanchez and Perdomo will all be rule 5 draft eligible for the first time after the 2005 season.

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