One of the biggest joys of the MLB season is when top-notch pitching prospects finally get the chance to take the hill and make their MLB debuts. Some draft picks fare well in their first outings while others get a quick taste of what the professional level demands.
Well, the New York Mets‘ faithful won’t have to wait any longer on the debut of Zack Wheeler. With a comfortable seat in last place, the Mets only have a few things to look forward to and Wheeler is one of them. The 1-2 punch of phenom Matt Harvey and Wheeler has danced in the minds of Mets fans across the country and now it can finally become a reality.
Oddly enough, Wheeler will make his long-awaited debut in the second leg of a double header against the Atlanta Braves on Tuesday night. The 23-year-old Wheeler has done a great job at the Triple-A level with a 3.72 ERA in 101 2/3 innings and has dazzled with 9.2 K/9 – all stats dating back to 2012. However, they just don’t have hitters like Justin Upton sitting in the minor leagues.
With that being said, the sixth-overall pick in the 2009 MLB Draft has been called a prospect to watch since the season began.
Believe it or not, Wheeler made his way to the Big Apple via a trade as the Mets sent Carlos Beltran to the San Francisco Giants in 2011. In essence, the Giants traded away Wheeler for 44 games of Beltran who booked for free agency the very next season. Depending on how Wheeler’s debut goes, I’m guessing the Giants will be kicking themselves for making that move.