2003 Scouting Report: LHP, Neal Musser

LHP, Neal Musser

Neal Musser was drafted out of high school as a 2nd round selection in the 1999 draft. He was the Mets first overall pick because the Mets did not have a 1st round selection due to the free agent signing of Robin Ventura. . Musser has exhibited excellent control having walked 88 batters in 308 innings. He's allowed 10 home runs in his last 210 innings.

The Mets had planned to fast track Musser and have him at Columbia in 2000, but his physical problems (rib cage injuries, sore elbow, foot stress fracture) delayed his progress.

Year

Team

W-L

IP

Hits

BB

K

ERA

2003

Binghamton

1-3

35

30

8

29

3.12

2003

St. Lucie

3-0

35

41

9

16

4.67

2002

St. Lucie

2-0

19

20

5

12

1.42

2002

Brooklyn

0-0

13

7

5

12

0.69

2001

St. Lucie

3-4

46

45

19

40

3.55

2001

Cap City

7-4

95

86

18

98

2.84

2000

Kingsport

3-0

34

33

6

21

2.10

1999

Gulfport

2-1

31

26

18

22

2.01


*Stats as of 6/8/03

Repertoire. Fastball (FB), curve ball (CB), slider (SL) and change up (CU).

Fastball. Musser's FB sits in the 89-90 mph range and tops off at 92 mph. He should add 1 or 2 mph to his FB. His FB has excellent sinking action. He's allowed very few HR.

Other Pitches. Musser's most effective pitch is his CU with effective run and drop. He now has a sharp CB with good bite to mix in. He also has a slow CB and a SL.

Pitching. Musser has outstanding control of 3 pitches 2 all of which are now MLB-ready quality out pitches. Musser needs a solid defense behind him but if he doesn't walk many batters and doesn't allow many HR, he can be a successful MLB SP.

Projection. Musser projects to a high quality #3 starter.

ETA. 2004. If he remains healthy, a September call up in 2003 is possible.

Starting Pitchers Team
Jeremy Griffiths AAA - Norfolk Tides
Patrick Strange AAA - Norfolk Tides
Jake Joseph AAA - Norfolk Tides
Phil Seibel AAA - Norfolk Tides
Jason Roach AAA - Norfolk Tides
Aaron Heilman AAA - Norfolk Tides
Bob Keppel AA - Binghamton Mets
David Mattox AA - Binghamton Mets
Joseph Cole AA - Binghamton Mets
Neal Musser AA - Binghamton Mets
Lenny Dinardo AA - Binghamton Mets
Matthew Peterson A- St. Lucie Mets
Kevin Deaton A- St. Lucie Mets
Ross Peeples A- St. Lucie Mets
Wayne Ough A- St. Lucie Mets
Kenneth Chenard A- St. Lucie Mets
Miguel Pinango A - Capital City Bombers
Yunior Cabrera A - Capital City Bombers
Matthew Lindstrom A - Capital City Bombers
Scott Kazmir A - Capital City Bombers
Adam Elliot A - Brooklyn Cyclones


Comments


Starting pitching remains the deepest part of the Mets farm system. Aside from the great depth, Kazmir, Peterson, Keppel and Elliott have real high ceilings. Both Jake Joseph and Jason Scobie project better as RP's than SPs, so aren't included in the list below. Ross Peoples has struggled mightily at St. Lucie. Joey Cole is beginning to look more like a long RP/spot SP rather than a #5 SP.

1. Scott Kazmir (LHP) - remains the gem of the farm system's deep core of pitching prospects. He's improved his CU and needs to work on his command and build arm strength.

2. Aaron Heilman (RHP) - remains ready to lend an arm to the Mets in 2003. The Mets want him to become a bit more consistent especially with his SL.

3. Matthew Peterson (RHP) - remains the RHP with the highest ceiling and has been outstanding in 2003 despite a delay due to a minor arm ailment.

4. Patrick Strange (RHP) - has had a cup of coffee with the Mets in 2003. He remains a quality prospect, but needs to develop another quality pitch and his spl. FB sits in his back pocket waiting to be reused. Strange's minor surgery to remove a bone spur hasn't slowed him in 2003 at all.

5. Jeremy Griffiths (RHP) - also probably needs another plus pitch to be a quality SP, but his deceptive motion projects him to be a closer as he repeats his arm slot on FB, SL and CU.

6. Bob Keppel (RHP) - has good command and an extensive arsenal of pitches. He still needs to fill out and maintain the velocity on his fastball.

7. David Mattox (RHP) - possesses 5 pitches with good movement and will be as good as his command.

8. Lenny DiNardo (LHP) - finally demonstrating the promise that projected him as a potential first rounder in the 2003 draft. Still needs for his velocity to return to the 90-91 mph range. Great command of CB and CU.

9. Miguel Pinango (RHP) - strike throwing machine is having an outstanding season.

10. Adam Elliot (RHP) - has not pitched yet in 2003 and is likely to begin the season with Brooklyn. He challenges Peterson and Keppel as having the highest ceiling after Kazmir.

11. Neal Musser (LHP} - has been healthy in 2003 and pitched extremely well after being promoted to Binghamton.

12. Phil Seibel (LHP} - has a nice mix of pitches that should make him an effective MLB pitcher. Most likely an end of the rotation SP, but has demonstrated his ability to pitch effectively out of the bullpen.

13. Wayne Ough (RHP) - is now in the mix with the improved command and addition of a quality CU.

14. Luz Portabanco (RHP) - remains a SP prospect, but will decline rapidly if he doesn't begin to be productive. He possesses the repertoire to be a front end SP.

15. Kenneth Chenard (RHP) - along with Ough and Nick Maness possesses the best stuff of any pitchers in the organization. However, he's like Casper the Ghost because he disappears on to the DL much to often.

16. Yunior Cabrera (LHP) - is likely to a RP, but has enough repertoire to start.

17. Brian Walker (LHP) - finally healthy in 2003, should he regain his 90-91 mph FB, then he has enough stuff to be a SP, otherwise his future as a SP is in doubt.

18. Matt Lindstrom (RHP) - has good stuff, but he lacks experience and coaching. His start at Columbia has been surprisingly good. Might be holding off shift to bullpen.

19. I'll add short season talent as their season begins. Since the Venezuelan Summer Leaguie has already begun, 2 good second year prospects remained there who are having outstanding seasons. Yusemeiro Petit, perhaps, the best of 2nd year pitchers should begin this season with Kingsport. Jose Sanchez (3-1, 1.76, 30.7) and Javier Perdomo (3-2, 1,53, 29.3) are having outstanding seasons. Sanchez has allowed 22 hits, issued 7 BB and struck out 36. Perdomo in his 1st season as a SP has allowed 15 hits, issued 2 BB and struck out 40. All three are RHPs.

20. Returning short season lefties to keep an eye on are Ryan Danly, Edgar Alfonzo and Kelvin Garay. Danly has a power arm probably second only to Scott Kazmir. Garay is a big kid with a lot of physical development remaining despite already being 220 lbs. Alfonzo is of course Fonzie's nephew.

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