One lesson that the New York Mets are learning early on in the 2022 season is the importance of pitching depth that a team must have if they hope to be competitive.
Not even 2 months into the season and already Jacob deGrom, Max Scherzer and Tylor Megill are all on the shelf due to injury, and as a result, the Mets are turning to the minor leagues to bring in pitchers to pick up the slack.
While today's topic of conversation is not major league ready just yet, the Mets' 9th ranked prospect, right handed starting pitcher Dominic Hamel is one to watch in the coming years.
Entering the 2022 season, Dominic Hamel is already one of the New York Mets' most prized pitching prospects, and for good reason.
Standing at 6' 2" out of Dallas Baptist University, the Mets drafted Hamel in the 3rd round (81st overall) in the 2021 MLB draft.
Hamel certainly finished his college career on a high note, as he set a DBU record with 136 strikeouts in 91 2/3 innings as a senior, while posting a 4.22 ERA and a 13-2 win/loss record.
As for his pitching repertoire, Hamel alternates between his fastball, slider, change up and curveball, with his fastball typically sitting in the mid-90s according to his scouting report, while his breaking pitches typically sit in the low-80s.
Hamel began the 2022 season with New York's Single-A affiliate in St. Lucie. At the time of writing, Dominic has started 6 games for the St. Lucie Mets to varying degrees of success so far.
For the year, Hamel has posted a 3.96 ERA over 25 innings, over which he's struck out 24 batters while walking 16.
Just from those numbers, you can see his strikeouts per inning are down and he is averaging 5.76 walks per 9 innings, so Hamel is experiencing some control issues in the majors.
However, his overall ERA through his first 6 starts is nearly 20 points lower than his ERA in his senior year of college, which is a positive sign early on in his first full season in the minors.
According to scouts, if Hamel can continue to improve his control and learn to become more of a "pitcher" and less of a "thrower", than its possible he could move up the minor league system fairly quickly.
Despite only being drafted in 2021, Hamel is still regarded highly among other prospects in the Mets' farm system and is currently their no. 2 ranked pitching prospect.
Hopefully Dominic can master the control of his fastball and breaking pitches as he continues his journey through the Mets' farm system in the coming years and with any luck, we may see him in the majors sooner rather than later.
Best of luck going forward Dom. Hopefully we'll see you in Queens soon.