The New York Mets and Major League Baseball await motion to end the lockout. As we move closer and closer to 2022 Spring Training, the Mets bullpen may need some special attention from the minor leagues.
The New York Mets will return in 2022 with a new work-horse starter, in Max Scherzer, accompanied by the face of the pitching franchise, Jacob deGrom. Although these two names along with a few other starters may be enough to better the Mets contention possibilities, the bullpen can use assistance. The Mets bullpen to this point will remain similar to last year. The positives behind this, lights up the Mets top 30 prospect list, in which 14 of those farm-raised talents are pitchers. Out of these 14 pitching prospects, only about 3-4 of them may be ready to enter the big show.
However, there is one name amongst these pitching prospects that may be able to assist the Mets bullpen go the full yard this season.
Which Mets minor leaguer can assist the bullpen in 2022?
This kid is a 6’6” southpaw sitting at 225lbs with the AAA Syracuse Mets. His name is Josh Walker. Walker was drafted by the New York Mets in the 37th round of the MLB amateur draft out of the University of New Haven. Walker was a quick-rise through the prospect ranking and Mets system after his first full season of work in 2021; previously he experienced a set back in 2019 due to an unfortunate event, in which he’s bounded back from.
The 6’6” southpaw is athletic and consistent off of the bump, with sharp velocity and location on his fastball which typically sits in the low 90s range. His fastball is considered his main weapon, which is very well placed in and around the zone, known to begin at-bats with strikes and can end a count on something up and in. He also throws a curveball, reading late 70s, early 80s with good movement, late break, and deception. He can also change speeds with a changeup which is also reliable.
Walker has the ability to eat innings, with a good pitcher's IQ to work counts and get ground balls. In 2021, he finished with a .692% W-L%, 98 strikeouts, only 29 walks in 115.2 innings, with a 3.73 ERA, going 9-4 on the year in a span of 3 teams. Josh Walker is expected to show face in the league at some point in 2022, and could be a huge fix for the New York Mets Bullpen.