During Wednesday’s Q&A with season ticket holders at Citi Field, J.P. Ricciardi, who serves as a special assistant to Sandy Alderson, was asked about a player in the farm system he is excited to see this season, and he said he has been very impressed with LHP Jack Leathersich.
“I think he’s one of the guys who could get a taste of the big leagues at some point this year,” Ricciardi said of Leathersich. “It’s nice to have a left-hander with a ‘strikeout-ability.’”
Ricciardi said it’s possible Leathersich could arrive in Flushing this season.
The Mets selected Leathersich in the fifth round of the 2011 first-year player draft. In 38 relief appearances with Savannah and St. Lucie last year, Leathersich went 2-6 with a 3.00 ERA, having allowed 51 hits, 31 walks and only three home runs while striking out 113 batters in only 72 innings.
Michael Baron, ContributorI had the opportunity to watch Leathersich in St. Lucie last season, and he was impressive in the sense that he isn’t tall, but he hides the ball so well – especially against left-handers – and he misses a lot of bats as a result. Leathersich reminds me a little of Billy Wagner in terms of his size and build, although Leathersich doesn’t throw as hard as Wagner did.
Leathersich has only served in relief during his professional career, but he’s been successful and often dominant in the lower levels of the minor leagues to this point. He got off to a fantastic start while in Savannah last season, as he was mostly unhittable in the early part of the season, striking batters out to a tune of nearly 14 per nine innings. While he didn’t disappoint with his strikeouts upon being promoted to St. Lucie (he struck out more than 14 batters per nine innings), he struggled a bit with his command which led to an inconsistent finish to his season. Still, he is an interesting talent in the system, and considering he’s left-handed and can dominate, I expect he will get a lot of attention in the coming months as he progresses towards the upper levels.
For complete coverage of the Mets Minor Leagues, be sure to check out SNY’s Mets Minor League Blog.
To follow Leathersich on Twitter, click here.