The New York Mets have promoted infield prospect Mark Vientos to the majors, according to the team. Vientos, 23, made his big-league debut last season. In 16 games, he batted .167/.268/.278 (57 OPS+) with a home run and 12 strikeouts in 41 plate appearances. He’s performed far better in Triple-A this season, amassing a 1.104 OPS with 13 home runs and 37 runs batted in over the course of 166 trips to the plate.
Vientos’ ball-tracking metrics have also impressed. His average exit velocity at Triple-A was 94.5 mph, and his average launch angle was 7.1 degrees. He hit nearly 60% of his batted balls at least 95 mph or better. The league-average clip at Triple-A this season in that particular category is just 38%.
The Mets have, in a corresponding move, optioned utility infielder Luis Guillorme to the minors to clear space for Vientos, They didn’t want for other veterans they could have banished, including veteran outfielder Tommy Pham. Pham, 35, has hit .188/.284/.348 (75 OPS+) with five extra-base hits in his first 81 plate appearances this season. Veteran infielder Eduardo Escobar would seem like another potential candidate to lose his spot at some point in the near future.
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The Mets can only hope that Vientos provides a boost to a lineup that could use one. New York entered Wednesday ranked 21st in runs and 20th in home runs. Those offensive marks help to explain why the Mets, at 20-23, have started the season in a disappointing…