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MLB Rookie Profile: Amed Rosario, SS, New York Mets

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Mets promote top prospect to major leagues

MLB: Spring Training-New York Mets at Atlanta Braves Butch Dill-USA TODAY Sports

In a long-awaited move, the New York Mets promoted infielder Amed Rosario to the major league roster today. Here’s a quick update.

Amed Rosario, SS: Rosario has been on the radar for a long time: the Mets signed him back in 2012 out of the Dominican Republic for $1,750,000. Initially renowned mainly for his defense, he took a step forward offensively in 2016, hitting .324/.374/.459 between High-A and Double-A.

Rosario was ranked as the top prospect on the New York Mets Top 20 prospects list for 2017 with the following comment:

1) Amed Rosario, SS, Grade A/A-: Age 21, signed out of Dominican Republic in 2012; hit .324/.374/.459 with 24 doubles, 13 triples, 19 steals, 40 walks, 87 strikeouts in 479 at-bats between High-A and Double-A; superior defender with plus arm strength, range, instincts; bat is developing nicely with increasing gap power and improved feel for the strike zone; excellent bat speed could lead to double-digit home runs as he matures, and he should maintain batting average to go with it; shortstop of the future and ready soon with multi-category fantasy impact ability. ETA 2018.

Rosario has maintained his offensive progress in 2017, hitting .328/.367/.466 for Triple-A Las Vegas with seven homers, 19 steals, 23 walks, and 67 strikeouts in 393 at-bats. It is true that the environment of Las Vegas has helped him; he’s hitting .346/.391/.508 at home, but has still been effective on the road at .313/.345/.428.

Listed at 6-2, 190, Rosario is a right-handed hitter born November 20, 1995. He’s got the range, hands, and arm strength to be an above-average-to-excellent defender at shortstop. That’s been known for years, but his hitting development over the last two seasons has moved him from possible regular to possible star.

That may not happen right away. There’s a big difference between the National League and the Pacific Coast League, and even applying an adjustment for the PCL and Vegas, it is important to keep short-term expectations in check. Although he’s gotten stronger over the last two years, he is still more of a line drive hitter than a power masher. His approach is fairly aggressive and while he doesn’t strike out much, he also doesn’t draw a large number of walks. His OBP will be dependent on maintaining a strong BABIP.

Now, cautions aside, Rosario IS an elite prospect and has little left to prove in the minors. Just keep in mind that he’s only 21. He may have some growing pains.