Mark Vientos Comparisons To Pete Alonso Unfair
One of the more bewildering aspects of the saga of Brodie Van Wagenen is how he went from agent to GM and back to agent. That journey saw him go from the agent of Robinson Cano to the GM overpaying to acquire him to representing Cano again.
Cano wasn’t the only member of the New York Mets organization for whom this was true. It was also the case for Dominic Smith, a player who was surprisingly added to the 2019 Opening Day roster even with Pete Alonso being named the Opening Day starter at the same position. It was also true for a notable Mets prospect – Mark Vientos.
If we want to get into technicalities, it is Roc Nation who represents these players. That was the case then and now. Notably, Van Wagenen is now the COO of Roc Nation. As a result, he has personal ties to these players, especially the Mets ones. He made that very clear on Vientos:
Big Pete Alonso is a super star and one of the best power hitters of this generation. A comparison of Pete’s age 22 year old season to @MarkVientos_5 at the same age illustrates an exciting trajectory. pic.twitter.com/nbmDRgxFhu
— Brodie Van Wagenen (@RocBVW) February 3, 2023
There is a lot to be said about comparing Alonso and Vientos. Certainly, years ago, it did some as if Vientos could have had a brighter Major League future than Alonso.
Right now, Vientos is 23 years old, and he’s already accumulated 41 Major League plate appearances. We did see a glimpse of what he could be at the plate when he hit his first career home run. It was an opposite field job to boot in the cavernous Oakland Athletics ballpark:
MARK VIENTOS HITS HIS FIRST MAJOR-LEAGUE HOME RUN! pic.twitter.com/Y0ca6JAlHW
— SNY (@SNYtv) September 24, 2022
Vientos hitting his first Major League homer at 22 is very impressive. To put it in perspective, Alonso began his age 22 season with then High-A St. Lucie. He would finish that year with Double-A Binghamton.
It needs to be reiterated. At the age Vientos was called up to DH in a pennant race, Alonso was just making his way to Double-A.
Looking at it that way, Vientos is light years ahead of where Alonso was. In fact, for much of his professional career, Vientos has been far ahead of where Alonso was at that age.
However, that’s really a small part of the picture. We need to account for Vientos being drafted out of high school as opposed to Alonso being drafted out of college.
More than that, we need to realize what Alonso did with his opportunities, and what he’s done as a Major Leaguer. Alonso is a two-time All-Star who set the rookie home run record, and in many ways, is and outright superstar in this league.
Comparing anyone to him is insane. More than that, it’s just wrong. Overall, it’s just unfair to that player.
It is certainly possible Vientos could be better than Alonso and be a better power hitter. The potential is there even if it requires him to do much of the work Alonso did, and really, more than Alonso did.
So no, we can’t discount Vientos much in the same way we can’t discount all the work Alonso put in to make himself not just a Major Leaguer, but a legitimate All-Star. We can believe in the player while acknowledging the long road ahead.
That’s why it’s unfair. Vientos can do everything Alonso did and more, and he may still fall short of that standard. Seeing where Alonso is as a big leaguer, failing to be that or better should not be viewed as a failure.
All we can say is Vientos is a good power hitting prospect with a legitimate chance to have a long Major League career. Anything past that is wrong and unfair to him.
Put another way, Brodie Van Wagenen again needs to knock it off.