2019 Mets Non-Roster Invitee Preview: Ryder Ryan

In August of 2017 the Mets traded Jay Bruce to the Indians and got Ryder Ryan in return. The move at the time puzzled Mets fans as Jay Bruce was smashing homers and the Mets acquired a player who was drafted in the 30th round in 2016 (and didn’t even end up in the Top 30 Mets Prospects in Baseball America in 2018). But it was an August trade and the Mets it seemed were moved more by money than anything else.

Ryan came to the Mets from single A ball with the Indians were he posted a 4.79 ERA over 41.1 innings, up from 3.86 over 18.2 innings the year before. This also led to the criticism the Mets received.

However, since joining the Mets, he’s fared better! He finished 2017 off in Columbia posting a 2.08 ERA and a 0.846 WHIP over 13.0 innings. This earned him a promotion to St. Lucie last year where he pitched in 16 games, 20.1 innings posting a 1.77 ERA and a 0.934 WHIP. Which in turn earned him another promotion to Binghamton where he pitched in 26 games, 32.2 innings with a much higher ERA (4.13) but still a low WHIP at 1.133.

The change in his WHIP has been fascinating before becoming a Met. Even in his first season with the Indians where he had a respectable ERA, his WHIP was 1.607. The next year with the Indians it was a 1.476. He hasn’t posted numbers anywhere close to this as a Met.

At age 23 last year, he was 1.4 years younger than the average AA baseball player. In my opinion, it’s a toss up right now if he starts the year in AA or AAA, especially since they are both close to NY. With the Mets restocking their bullpen this year, there’s more space between him and Queens.

I expect him to get a long look in Spring Training since he’s a reliever and since the Mets have parted ways with other players they traded for in the sell-off years (Hi Bautista) Ryan naturally moved up the depth charts as a young pitcher replacement. If the drop in his WHIP is a trend, maybe Ryan makes a lot of us, including myself after the Bruce trade, eat crow.

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