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Under the Radar Mets Prospect Is off to Strong Start in Single-A

MLB scouts have raved about his power potential. From the moment that the New York Mets signed Jesus Baez as an international free agent for $275,000, his power and ability have translated well to the pro level.  As a 17-year-old, Baez hit seven home runs in the Dominican Summer League in 2022, which was no easy feat, let alone someone his age. He struggled a bit in the Complex League last year after coming stateside, with a 71 wRC+. There was a little power there, with 11 extra-base hits and two home runs in 40 games. However, he batted just .211 overall at the plate.

Since making the jump up to Single-A St. Lucie, Baez has stood out. Not only has he flashed the raw power that made him stand out, but he’s also showing a more well-rounded approach at the plate. It’s part of helping him take his game to the next minor league level and eventually the majors.

Jesus Baez is Showing Signs of Potential

In his first two seasons of pro ball, Baez has been a heavy pull hitter, either finishing well above or just under 50 percent when it came to hitting to the left side of the field. This season, he’s also working on going the other way, and that’s helped unleash another side of his game.

One of the biggest keys to his success has been his ability to adjust to breaking pitches mid-swing, something not every teenager can do. He’s hitting .292/.338/.462 in 139 plate appearances. Baez has a better batting average against breaking (.326) and off-speed (.556) pitches than he does when facing fastballs (.259). In the video above, it shows how Baez can slow the bat down and take a few breaking pitches the other way, one of which is for extra bases.

Still Showing His Game In Spectacular Ways

While showing a solid contact rate, he hasn’t lost his touch regarding hitting for power. Baez has done well elevating the ball, something that some players in Single-A struggle with initially. This has allowed his raw power to shine through. As of May 14, he’s hit four home runs in 31 games this season with eight doubles and a triple. A pair of those home runs came against the Bradenton Marauders the previous week. 


His 90th percentile exit velocity (104.1 mph) and max exit velocity (109.1 mph) show that despite his smaller frame. The fact that his contact rates have been through the roof while not having to sacrifice his power is why Baez is starting to gain a lot of steam around the league. While most of the attention has focused on Jett Williams and Luisangel Acuña, the Mets are liking what they seen in Baez so far. The shortstop-turned-third basemen is among ten non-top 100 prospects from Baseball America. BA ranks him as the Mets 17th-best prospect before the season. The summer will complete the rest of the story if Baez can keep it up. If he does, he could easily push himself up the Mets prospect list and perhaps more.

Main Photo: © Tommy Gilligan-USA TODAY Sports


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