Trio of Mets pitching prospects dominate up and down the system

April 17th, 2024

A franchise known for developing some of the game's best pitchers over the past half-century hasn't uncovered many gems -- hidden or otherwise -- in recent years.

But that might be starting to change.

While we might not see comparisons drawn to the likes of homegrown aces Tom Seaver, Dwight Gooden or Jacob deGrom, the Mets' pitching pipeline is beginning to flow freely once again. On Tuesday, three of New York's top four pitching prospects stood tall on the mound, providing a pleasant glimpse of what the future might hold in Queens.

Christian Scott, Triple-A Syracuse
By far the closest and most dominant of the Mets' young hurlers this season, Scott has opened eyes as a sneaky-good pitcher who could make an impact in the Majors this season. The Mets' No. 5 prospect has done nothing to refute that through the first two weeks of play.

After surrendering a pair of solo homers and a double in the opening frame, Scott settled in and quieted Charlotte's lineup. Flashing a mid-90s fastball and a biting slider, the 24-year-old held the Knights hitless over his final 4 1/3 innings, striking out seven with a pair of walks to earn the win in Syracuse's 9-2 victory at Truist Field.

Scott retired 13 of the last 15 batters he faced, punctuated by fanning the side in the fifth. He was lifted with one out in the sixth having thrown 58 of his 95 pitches for strikes. Scott, who has a 3.77 ERA and a 0.91 WHIP, leads the Minors with 26 strikeouts in 14 1/3 innings.

Blade Tidwell, Double-A Binghamton
One rung down the Mets' farm system sits Tidwell, who broke through in a big way last year, his first full season of competition. The club's No. 10 prospect is off to another quick start in 2024, posting a 1.69 ERA and a 1.03 WHIP in his first two outings for the Rumble Ponies.

A starting pitcher, Tidwell pitched in relief for the first time on Tuesday, entering the game in the fourth inning after Max Kranick opened the contest during a rehab start. The change in routine didn't faze the 2022 second-round Draft pick, who picked up the victory against Reading by fanning a season-high 10 in five innings.

Tidwell, who finished second among Mets Minor Leagues with 153 strikeouts in 2023, fanned the first four batters he faced and allowed two runs on a pair of Reading sac flies, three hits and three walks in a 3-2 win at Mirabito Stadium.

Brandon Sproat, High-A Brooklyn
Capping off the successes by the triumvirate on Tuesday was one of the organization's newest hurlers. The Mets selected 56th overall Sproat last year out of the University of Florida. it was the second consecutive Draft in which New York took Sproat, who spurned a third-round offer in 2022.

So far, the Mets' perseverance has paid off. Viewing Sproat as a high-ceiling, top-of-the-rotation arm, New York plugged the 23-year-old into Brooklyn's rotation to begin his professional career. Although the organization is being cautious with his workload early on, Sproat has flashed mid-90s heat consistently in his first two starts for the Cyclones, striking out 10 in 6 2/3 innings, albeit with seven walks.

New York's No. 13 prospect was strong in Brooklyn's 3-1 loss to Jersey Shore, fanning five and walking a pair in four innings at ShoreTown Ballpark. Sproat's only blemish came in his final frame when he surrendered a leadoff homer to Leandro Pineda. It was a much more efficient outing for the native of Pensacola, Fla., who tossed 43 of his 69 pitches for strikes. In his pro debut against Asheville on Aug. 8, Sproat didn't allow a run but issued five walks and needed 63 pitches to get through 2 2/3 innings.