Zack Wheeler Continues to Impress
New York Mets top prospect, Zack Wheeler, continued to impress as he dominated the New Britain Rock Cats in a career high eight innings pitched, while only throwing 97 pitches, 63 of which were strikes. An unseasonably warm year has continued to help the right-hander get conformtable with the B-Mets, who was entering his first season where he wasn’t in a traditionally warm climate. The Georgia native has been able to take advantage of the warm weather, and has now won four games in a row, improving his record to 4-2.
In his eight innings of work, Wheeler retired the first 10 hitters in a row, and took a no-hitter into the fifth inning; Nate Hanson drove in Aaron Hickswith two outs to break up the no-no bid, scoring their only run of the contest. The 21-year-old only gave up two hits in his outing, gave up one run, and struck out six en route to the victory. Wheeler spoke about how he used to be the type of pitcher that used to throw a lot of pitches in any given outing, but this year has been different, as he’s been very efficient. One of the possible reasons for this is the institution of a change up, which he has been able to use to get himself right when his fastball and/or slider
haven’t been working.
Wheeler has spun two consecutive 7+ inning outings for the Binghamton Mets, and has lasted at least five innings in seven of his eight starts, showing that his transition to the more competitive Eastern League has been smooth. His 1.97 ERA is sixth-lowest in the league, while he leads all hurlers with 51 strikeouts.
The performances of Wheeler and fellow rotation mate Matt Harvey (4-1, 4.31 ERA) have the organization the most excited they’ve been about multiple pitching prospects since Generation-K. In his first full season with the Mets after being traded from San Francisco for Carlos Beltran last July, Zack Wheeler ranks 25th on the MLB’s top 100 prospect list; even though he’s been pitching quite well and the Mets big league rotation has been in flux, Alderson has stated that they will not be rushing any of their young arms to the Majors, which is a great move. Both Harvey and Wheeler have some learning to do that will be beneficial towards their career with the Mets when they get the call.