3. Cesar Puello
Omar Minaya had a knack for finding international talent. Cesar Puello signed as a 16-year-old corner outfielder out of the Dominican Republic in July 2007. He rose through the Mets minor league rankings quickly, reaching High-A as a 20-year-old in 2011. Puello always hit for a high batting average between 2007-2011 with great plate discipline and gap-to-gap ability. His arm strength and incredible speed profiled him as a future right fielder that was built to handle the Citi Field corner.
Puello’s offense took off when he reached AA in 2013. Across 91 games, he hit .326 with 16 home runs, 73 RBI, and 23 stolen bases. He became one of the Mets’ top prospects by midseason before being suspended for illegal use of PED substances. Puello would never bounce back upon his return in 2014, seeing his batting average and power decline to .252 with 7 home runs and 13 stolen bases.
Puello is another unfortunate story of a player losing their potential following a PED substance suspension. With all the talent he had as a young player, Puello had no reason to search for more power at the plate. He would eventually play at the major league level, most recently for the Boston Red Sox in 2020. However, Puello’s resurgence never came as he has yet to play another professional game in the United States since 2021.