Tampa Bay has three top pitching prospects ready to step up in 2021; The screwball throwing Brent Honeywell, two-way player Brendan McKay, and Shane McClanahan who has the upside of a # 3 starter or better.
Blake Snell, is the team’s ace and is a fixture on top of their rotation. The Rays also have an unorthodox approach with they way they handle their team’s pitching staff. Sometimes they only let their starters go until they reach the third time of the batting order. Other times they will use their bullpen as openers and bring their model starting pitcher later in the game. They heavily rely on analytics and follow what the numbers say which can be frustrating for fans watching, but has been effective for them. I believe that they have yet to tap into the full potential of Tyler Glasnow.
The 27 year old 6’8 hard throwing righty has an overpowering fastball that averages 97 MPH and a nasty curveball with great movement. The negative thing about Glasnow is that hitters know that he only throws these two pitches and so can flip a coin in their heads as to which one is coming next. He misses a lot of bats, but when hitters make contact, they can do some major damage.
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In 2019, Glasnow only threw a changeup 4.7% of the time but he was still able to produce a whopping 14.3 strike out per 9 innings and a 14% swinging strike rate. Maybe he does not have too much confidence with his change up, but if he was able to mix this pitch into his arsenal to at least 15% of the time, and/or throw a slider he could arguably be one of the top aces of the game.
What would the Mets have to pay? Tampa have one of the richest farm systems in baseball and with Wander Franco ready to debut at SS, they probably would not be interested in a either Gimenez or Rosario. They heavily rely on prospects and young inexpensive options that they can control for multiple years or develop and unlock their inner Randy Arozarena. They have a solid core of position players with the exception of C, 3B, and probably 1B (the jury is still out on Nate Lowe).
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The foundation of a deal would probably look something like Tyler Glasnow for Dominic Smith, JD Davis, and Catching Prospect Francisco Alvarez. I know this price would probably be too high for some people but I think it would be a buy low option for the Mets if they are able to get Glasnow to start throwing changeups and sliders in his repertoire. I believe that making this change could turn him into a future CY Young candidate. Just image what the rotation would look like with deGrom, Thor, and an upgraded Glasnow.
Photo: CBS Sports