At Mets camp today, I spent most of the morning watching Jenrry Mejia and Pedro Beato throw live BP. Most of the Mets beat writers did, and the general consensus is that Pedro Beato is throwing well early in camp. He certainly was bringin’ it today.(Two references with one stone here: LINK)
Beato was one of the Mets Rule V picks this winter and as such has to stick on the big league roster or be offered back to the Orioles. In addition to showing some early hop on his fastball today, Beato has been working notably hard so far during camp, finishing sprints and poles ahead of the group he’s running with. Taking all the workouts and drills seriously and performing them with intensity. i think that’s probably influencing the general wow-factor about his early pitching performances. You wanna root for the guy, cause he’s doing all the right things so far.
That said, Mejia’s pure stuff today was more impressive. Maybe we’re a bit jaded because we’ve seen it, but similar to last year, the hiss coming from the seams generated by Mejia’s velocity and the imprssive pop in the catcher’s glove when he throws his fastball, draws fans, media, other players, and coaches to the perimeter of whatever field he’s throwing on, every time he picks up a baseball. I know the staff says he’s starting at AAA and that’s appropriate. But, the kid has an undeniably electric arm. As impressive as Beato was today, Mejia’s still the kid with the golden arm.
I also spent some time watching the B-Team taking infield, specifically Ruben Tejada, Justin Turner, Russ Adams, Jordany Valdespin, Zach Lutz, Luis Hernandez and Nick Evans. You can see why Omar Minaya pointed out Valdespin last year, and why he’s captured some of the attention of the media coverage of the minor leaguers. He’s super graceful and athletic and has a powerful arm. He makes difficult things look easy. At one point this afternoon, on a drill where the infielders were working on charging slow rollers, Valdespin’s athleticism allowed him to both reach the ball faster, and stop his momentum so much more quickly than the other players, that he was already back in position at shortstop before the guy who had gotten the grounder before him had jogged back into position. The other player had busted it in, and ran back, but Valdespin’s sheer athleticism was so superior that he was just able to complete the cycle of the drill that much faster.
Today’s photos include Jose Reyes, Jenrry Mejia, Pedro Beato, Wally Backman, Tim Teufel, Mike Pelfrey, Chris Young, Chris Capuano, Bobby Parnell, Oliver Perez, Jordany Valdespin, and Boof Bonzer amongst others.