10) Hector Pellot: Drafted in the 4th round of the 2005 MLB Draft out of Puerto Rico Baseball Academy High School, Pellot has yet to play an official game in the Mets' organization. He has quite a few tools, with speed being one of them. He impressed the Mets' brass at the Instructional League this past fall and many insiders believe he'll develop into a 20-30 stolen base threat as soon as 2006. While others might have more of a track record in the Mets' farm system, Pellot figures to get more of an opportunity to steal bases.
9) Emmanuel Garcia: Garcia opened some eyes with his 17 stolen bases with the Gulf Coast League Mets in 2005. While he doesn't have the greatest speed in the world, he has innate base running skills and he has an advanced eye of picking up pitchers' moves on the mound. With the likes of Jose Coronado, Hector Pellot, and Henry higher on the middle infield depth charts at the lower levels, Garcia's base running ability to keep him in the mix. Like Pellot, he could steal 20-30 bases if given an opportunity to play everyday.
8) Sean Henry: Henry has stolen 25 bases in his first 98 professional games. After getting caught six times in 2004, Henry was caught just once in 2005 to bring his stolen base percentage up to a respectable 78% so far in his career. Many are intrigued to see what kind of stolen base totals Henry could put together over the course of a long season. He might just get a chance to do that with the Hagerstown Suns in 2005. Very quick and athletic, Henry could steal 30+ bases as a full-time player.
7) Jonel Pacheco: Built more like a fire hydrant, Pacheco's legs are incredibly strong. After stealing 29 bases with Tronconero2 with the Venezuelan Summer League Mets in 2004, Pacheco flashed his speed with the Brooklyn Cyclones in 2005 with 20 stolen bases. The Mets re-signed Pacheco this past offseasons and his speed and hustle are a big reason why. He figures prominently in the long-season league plans for 2006, perhaps destined for one of the Hagerstown outfield spots. Pacheco could steal 30-40 bases if he's able to secure a starting role.
6) Joe Holden: A fiesty player who conjured up images of Lenny Dyktra while playing with Brooklyn last summer, Holden is incredibly quick. He stole 22 bases with the Cyclones in 2005 but he'll need to improve his percentages, getting caught eight times. Like Emmanuel Garcia, Holden's speed is keeping him in the long-season league discussions for 2006 as 30-40 stolen bases would be a given if he secured a starting spot with the Hagerstown Suns.
|DID YOU KNOW? Gonzalez stole 21 bases in the month of August last year. (Photo: Patrick Teale/NYfansonly.com)|
4) Ambiorix Concepcion: It was a lost year for Concepcion in 2005. He never got comfortable at the plate, on the base paths, or even with his manager last season. After stealing 28 bases in just 66 games with the Brooklyn Cyclones in 2004, Concepcion's 35 stolen bases in 130 games with the Hagerstown Suns in 2005 was a bitter disappointment. He is still one of the quickest players in the farm system and the Mets are hoping a fresh start in 2006 will lead to the 40-50 stolen base plateau many believe he can reach.
3) Anderson Hernandez: The 23-year old Hernandez had a breakout season in his first year in the Mets' organization in 2005. While his bat developed well last year, his game is predicated on defense and speed. He stole 35 bases in 2005, but was also caught 18 times. Hernandez is still very raw, especially on the base paths. If he can improve on his 66% success rate of a year ago, while keeping his same aggressive approach on the base, many believe Hernandez could swipe 40-50 bases in any given season. He began his career stealing 34 bases in just 55 games with the Gulf Coast League Tigers, so you know the potential is there.
2) Lastings Milledge: There are certainly faster guys in the Mets' organization than Milledge, but few are as aggressive or confident on the base paths. Milledge, who won't turn 21-years old until the first week of the 2006 season, has averaged better than 30 stolen bases in the equivalency of a full minor league season over his career. He swiped 29 bags in 2005, but also got caught stealing 18 times. While it is imperative that he increase his percentages, Milledge has just scratched the surface of his stolen base ability. He has the ability to steal 40+ bases in any given season.
1) Carlos Gomez: Just like Concepcion, Hernandez, and Milledge, Gomez still has a ways to go in learning the nuances of base stealing. He was caught an organizational leading 24 times in 2005, but also managed to steal 64 bases along the way. Grading out at an 80 with his speed in the traditional 20-80 scout's scale, Gomez is an electric base runner. While many believe he'll develop more into a power hitter down the road, his speed is unquestionable. As aggressive as he is, Gomez could steal his way to Shea.