Might Be Time For Mets To Call-Up Carlos Cortes
Put another way, they need to look at their prospect pool, and they need to identify MLB projectable prospects. At the same time, they’re going to want to avoid pressing their top, top guys into action too soon thereby damaging their development and/or trade value.
Taking everything into account, the name which stands out at the moment is Carlos Cortes.
Cortes was the Mets 2016 20th Round draft pick. He gained notoriety as an ambidextrous fielder. At second, he played right-handed, but in left, he played left-handed, which is his natural side. In essence, as a fielder, he’s Pat Venditte.
Cortes was drafted as a second baseman where it was believed his promising bat would play better. Cortes has been moved off the position and back to the outfield for a few reasons.
First and foremost, the Mets have an abundance of middle infield talent and not much outfield prospect talent in their system. Another reason is Cortes’ relative struggles in the field.
Through two minor league seasons, he had a .948 fielding percentage and 3.80 RF/9. To put it in perspective, Murphy was putting up better numbers than those. While the struggles were to be expected with the position switch, apparently, the Mets just didn’t see enough there to continue with Cortes at second.
That said, it’s a tool he carries. No, Cortes is not going to be your second baseman. However, for a start or two, he could be that. In some ways, you can liken him to Wilmer Flores on that front.
That’s not to say he’s the next Flores. Rather, the ability to even stand at a position has value at the Major League level. Like Flores and many before and after him, Cortes is going to lie and die by his bat.
— Mets Farm Report (@MetsFarmReport) May 24, 2021
Cortes has done some impressive things with the bat since being drafted like homering to right in Brooklyn. That’s no easy feet. Despite his being 5’7″, there’s real power in that bat.
We really saw that bat play in Australia during the winter. In 14 games, Cortes would hit an astounding .392/.429/.706. That was made all the more impressive when you consider he didn’t play in a game in 2020 like most minor leaguers.
That didn’t exactly carry forward to the Double-A season. He’s hitting just .239/.316/.418. However, Cortes does have a four game hitting streak right now, and he’s been a bit unlucky with a .269 BABIP.
There are positive underlying numbers like a 10.5 BB% and .179 ISO. He’s actually spraying the balls fairly evenly. In sum, he’s using all fields, has pop, and he’s not an easy out.
The question is whether the versatility and the bat where is at now should lead to a call-up. The honest answer is no. No, it should not be considered.
But, that’s a position for when everyone is healthy. At the moment, the backups to the backups to the backups are now injured. That’s not hyperbole. That’s the state of the Mets.
With that in mind, the Mets have to ask themselves whether they want a retread Major Leaguer on his last legs, a minor leaguer like a David Thompson who hasn’t taken that leap, or a Cortes should get the call-up.
Unless the Mets can swing a deal, preferably one better than Cameron Maybin for $1, the answer seems to trend towards Cortes. At the very least, he can play second and left, and he can be a fun novelty with his being ambidextrous in the field. And who knows? Maybe, he’ll really hit well.