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Mets: There may be a big league future for Dilson Herrera after all

PORT ST. LUCIE, FLORIDA - FEBRUARY 21: Dilson Herrera #16 of the New York Mets poses for a photo on Photo Day at First Data Field on February 21, 2019 in Port St. Lucie, Florida. (Photo by Michael Reaves/Getty Images)
PORT ST. LUCIE, FLORIDA - FEBRUARY 21: Dilson Herrera #16 of the New York Mets poses for a photo on Photo Day at First Data Field on February 21, 2019 in Port St. Lucie, Florida. (Photo by Michael Reaves/Getty Images)
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Dilson Herrera rejoined the New York Mets organization this past year. During his season with the Triple-A Syracuse squad, he has put on an impressive power display.

Not all that long ago, Dilson Herrera was the man many expected to take over at second base for the New York Mets. When Daniel Murphy left for free agency after the 2015 season, it felt like Herrera could slide right into the position.

This didn’t happen as the Mets decided to use Herrera in a deadline trade for Jay Bruce back in mid-2016. A failed stint with the Cincinnati Reds brought him back to the organization for 2019. All year long he has done nothing but hit.

Herrera was a member of the Triple-A All-Star Game this month. The way he landed there was mostly due to his impressive power. Through his first 275 plate appearances, Herrera has crushed 18 home runs. I know the minor leagues are using the same juiced baseball as the MLB. Still, the power is quite impressive.

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It feels like Herrera has been a professional ballplayer forever. Well, his career did begin back in 2011. We’re nearing the end of his first decade and he’s amazingly still just 25-years-old. Is there a big league future for him in New York?

Wisely, the Syracuse Mets have used Herrera at a variety of places on the field. He has played every infield position except shortstop. In the outfield, he has played in both corner positions. Though a second baseman by reputation, he has played more third baseman than anything else this year.

The Mets could use a more versatile fielder on the roster now and in the future. While Luis Guillorme has hit for average in Triple-A, his major league bats have looked lifeless.

Guillorme is a much better defender than Herrera and the man they have chosen to go with this season as a backup infielder. Herrera’s experience in the outfield could give him a slight edge over Guillorme in the future. Much of this is dependent upon how the depth looks.

For what it’s worth, Ruben Tejada is having an epic year in the minors for the Syracuse team, too. It’s always important to never get too caught up in what players are doing against other farmhands. Herrera is still a distant thought of getting any regular playing time with the Mets. If the power is for real, however, I think there’s a chance we see him seriously compete for a bench role on the 2020 club.

In the meantime, let’s see how many dingers he can finish this season with. Can he raise his batting average a few points and cut down on the strikeouts?

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When the rosters expand, we may see someone like Herrera return to the major leagues. Other than Guillorme, most of the top performers on Syracuse are older. Considering the Mets have fallen out of a pennant race already, we can assume it’s the youngster who will get their sips of coffee later this year. Herrera could and should be one of them.

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