LOD’s 2018 Prospects: New York Mets – Catcher
During the 2017-2018 offseason, we here at LOD are putting together a different kind of prospect list than you’re used to seeing. As opposed to typical prospect rankings, we are going position by position to give you the names to look out for in each organization in the upcoming season.
In my previous prospect post, I discussed LOD’s pick for the top right-handed and left-handed pitchers to keep your eye on for the New York Mets. Today I look at the other half of the battery and give you the catcher to look out for in 2018.
Catcher – Tomas Nido – 2017 Teams: Binghamton Rumble Ponies ( Double-A) New York Mets (MLB)
2017 Statistics (Minors): .232/.287/.354, .641 OPS, 8 HR, 60 RBI, 102 G
2017 Statistics (Majors): .300/.300/.400, .700 OPS, 0 HR, 3 RBI, 5 G
The New York Mets have not had a dominate impact catcher since the days of Mike Piazza, even though the guys behind the plate have done their best over the last decade to try fill the huge void left behind by the Hall of Famer. Over the past four seasons, the job has been Travis d’Arnaud‘s to lose and he has done enough to give it away either by his unfortunate stints on the DL, his poor defense or just his lack of consistent hitting when in the lineup. Defensively, the Mets need a catcher that will put a fear in the base runners and also will be durable behind the dish.
Kevin Plawecki seemed to be that durable body the Mets needed, as he is built better to withstand a full season behind the plate, but limited opportunities haven’t allowed him to reach his potential. Beyond these two gents, the Mets haven’t done enough to restock their system with top catching prospects, but there is one to keep an eye on and that is Tomas Nido, who has recently developed into a viable candidate for the job.
Nido, who was born in Guaynabo Puerto Rico, and raised in Florida was drafted by the Mets in the 8th round of the 2012 June MLB draft out of Orangewood Christian School in Maitland, FL.
The Mets placed Nido with the Kingsport Mets (Rookie) in his first pro season and he batted .242, with two home runs, 15 RBIs, and 12 walks in 38 games.
The following two seasons, Nido played with the Brooklyn Cyclones (Low-A) and combined he batted .241, with 12 doubles, two home runs, 32 RBIs, and 18 walks in 91 games.
Nido played a full season with the Savannah Sand Gnats (Class-A Full Season) in 2015 and in 86 games he batted .259, with 14 doubles, two triples, six home runs and 40 RBIs. He also earned a selection to the South Atlantic League All Star game.
But it all came together for the young catching prospect in the 2016 season when he won the Florida State League batting title with a .320 average. Overall on the season, he hit 23 doubles, two triples, seven home runs and drove in 46 runs in 90 games. He was selected to the FSL All Star game, while also being honored as the MiLB.com Organization All Star.
Nido continued his trend up the ranks in 2017, as he played in 102 games for the Binghamton Rumble Ponies (Double-A), and batted .232, with 19 doubles, one triple, eight home runs, 60 RBIs and 30 walks. He also had his best season behind the dish, with a .993 Fielding%, throwing out 23 of the 28 runners (45 %) who attempted to steal on him in 85 games.
Nido earned his third straight All Star selection, this time for the Eastern League, and was also selected to play in the Futures Game during the MLB All Star weekend in Miami last summer. He made an impact by finishing 2 for 2, with two RBIs.
All of his hard work earned him a promotion to the bigs on September 13th. On the following day, Nido would notch his first MLB hit with a single against the Chicago Cubs. Then on September 25th, he started his first ever MLB game behind the plate, and batted 1 for 3, with a double and two RBIs.
Nido may not be looked at as the next catching star for the Mets, but he has progressed nicely the last few minor league seasons and even though he may not put up big numbers now, he eventually will be an improvement to what the Mets have behind the dish. He has the tools and is considered to be a strong defensive backstop, who also has been praised for his catching instincts and quick reaction time.
Nido is definitely one catcher to watch in the upcoming 2018 season as he continues with his development and soon will earn a permanent spot on the big leaguer roster.
Next up, we will bring you our pick for the New York Mets first basemen to keep up with in 2018.