Ronny Mauricio's Getting More Than Just Reps This Winter
Confidence is a wild thing, friends...
Image credit: Roberto Carlo
The last we devoted some time to New York Mets prospect Ronny Mauricio at The Apple, he had just been sent down to minor league camp during Luis Rojas’ final spring training with the Mets in 2021.
And what a spring it was… The now-21-year-old went 5-for-14 with three runs driven in, one run scored, and just three strikeouts. Intrigued was out the window. The sound off his bat and his fluidity in just about all he did for a couple of weeks put us firmly in the riveted camp.
If you’ve been listening to the Simply Amazin’ podcast at any point over the last few years, you’re fully in tune with where we’re at in regards to his prospects as an, er, prospect.
Anyway. Have there been surface issues? Absolutely. The dearth of walks is certainly something to watch for moving forward. But what mid-development player doesn’t have flaws?
And once you take into account the fact that Mauricio’s been playing at 3.2 years below his collective league averages (MiLB only), the picture becomes a lot clearer.
The Dominican product’s batting average dropped 20 points between 2019 and 2021 (no 2020 season, of course). He saw that very nice .268/.307/.357 line with four homers and 20 doubles (plus 99 strikeouts) over 504 plate appearances with Single-A Columbia in 2020 shrink to a .248/.296/.449 line with 101 punchouts over 420 PA with High-A Brooklyn in 2021.
Not awful, but certainly not great. Though—and this goes for any walk of life—things don’t always appear to be working until BOOM they are.
For one, Mauricio’s long-foretold and large-framed power finally appeared in 2021, with the 6’3” 220-pounder crushing 20 dingers between Brooklyn and a stint in Double-A Binghamton (a moderately sparkling 10-for-31 with 2B, HR, 11 K, 2 BB).
That will work. As will the modest show Ronny put on in upstate New York last season (.259/.296/.472, 26 HR, 26 2B, 20 SB, 125 K in 541 PA). At 21. In Double-A. Not bad…
Oh, and don’t forget the .296/.345/.486 line with 15 doubles and five homers he’s put up over 45 Dominican Winter League games this fall. That’s big. Could be tremendous. In fact, we have a loose parallel…
Image credit: Chris Simon
One of this October’s young heroes—and, by all accounts, a future star in this league—Jeremy Peña, quietly did his thing over his first few seasons in the Astros’ system but mostly flew under the radar heading into 2020 despite a .303/.385/.440 line between Single-A Quad Cities and Advanced-A Fayetteville in 2019.
His paltry 17-for-93 showing in the Arizona Fall League that autumn didn’t help his stock rise too sharply, either. Then came the pandemic, and then—you guessed it—the Dominican Winter League. And that’s where Peña hit his stride and never really lost it.
Peña’s .306/.349/.430 showing in DR that winter (2020-21) carried him back to the States with, above all, confidence. Kids playing and succeeding among men—as Ronny’s been doing, too—will do that.
At Triple-A (with a Rookie Ball rehab stint) in 2021, he hit .297/.363/.579. Back in the Dominican that fall, he slashed .291/.364/.410. And after some natural bumps in the road for a rookie in the big leagues, Peña found his footing in 2022 and finished strong. Like, really strong (.278/.303/.487 in September; .345/.367/.638 in the postseason).
Will Ronny Mauricio be Jeremy Peña? Not with that OBP lol. But the trajectory from developing prospect to potential stardom is evident in both.
When you’ve got talent by the barrel, as Mauricio does, as an organization, you do your damnedest to harness that potential. So far, it feels like that process is taking hold.
With Mauricio blocked at the shortstop position in Queens by Francisco Lindor for the foreseeable future, he’s been getting reps at third base in the DR this winter. That’s a great thing.
Whether he finds himself in the mix at the hot corner in Flushing this spring is still a very big question mark, but the more versatility the better. An even bigger question mark is whether Ronny Mauricio will still be in the Mets organization come February.
We’ll just have to see, won’t we?
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