Note on the Series: A tradition at 213 Miles From Shea is walking through Baseball America’s Top 30 Mets prospects, one year after the list comes out. The BA printed book is generally out of date immediately when it’s published, especially when BVW was at the helm trading away prospects. Our goal with this series is to check in with how the prospects are doing. Some of them have been traded away. Because of the pandemic, minor league games did not happen last year, so we are also missing stats. Staying on top of the Minor League camp was not something I did last year, so when appropriate, I’ll link to the actual experts.
Well this is exciting!!! We actually have current stats for Carlos Cortes for this article. Carlos Cortes is making waves down under as one of several Mets who were signed by the Sydney Blue Sox this off-season for Winter Ball.
Before the 2020 season, Baseball America gave Cortes a 45 grade (High Risk). They concluded his write up with “Cortes doesn’t have a prototype body or speed for the middle infield, but Mets are convinced he will hit”. The third round pick in 2018 out of South Carolina sticks out in my mind because he plays different positions with different hands. He throws lefty when plays in the outfield and righty at second (I’m sure this will be come a fun fact SNY will repeat over and over again when he makes the majors). In 2018 he slashed .264/.338/.382 and in 2019, in St Lucie, he slashed .255/.336/.397.
Carlos is having a ton of fun in Sydney. He is hitting .392/.429/.706. His slugging right now is similar to his OPS the last two years in the minors. He’s doing this off of 56 trips to the plate. I’m not sure how much this changes things for the Mets – they don’t need an outfielder like him (the Mets are still looking for a true center and have plenty of people playing in the OF who probably shouldn’t be) and the middle infield is already crowded as well. The real question for the Mets to answer right now – what is happening in Sydney? If this is a true breakout, then Carlos will start to jump the depth chart. This winter doesn’t hurt his stock at all.
Additionally, the Mets are at a point where they are trying to take stock of talent in the system for trades after BVW. What if another team is intrigued by Cortes this winter? Surprise leaps forward by prospects are always fun!