Recent Drafts produce Mets All-Stars

Duda, Ceciliani lead talented group of breakout stars in 2010

Lucas Duda hit 27 homers between the Minors and the Majors in 2010. (Kevin Pataky/

By Robert Emrich / Special to | November 18, 2010 5:00 AM

This offseason, will be honoring the players -- regardless of age or prospect status -- who had the best seasons in their organization. We're taking a look at each team to determine the outstanding seasons in Minor League baseball. Select a team from the dropdown below.

The 2010 Minor League season was a successful one for the Mets, as three affiliates reached their league playoffs, and the organization's .521 winning percentage was ninth in baseball. The Brooklyn Cyclones had the best record in the New York-Penn League but fell in the finals to Tri-City. Both the Savannah Sand Gnats of the South Atlantic League and the Mets of the Gulf Coast League lost in the first round of their respective leagues' postseasons.

Catcher -- Mike Nickeas, Binghamton (82 games)/Buffalo (seven games): The 27-year-old Canadian made his first Minor League All-Star team after batting .283 with five homers and 33 RBIs for the Double-A Mets. Nickeas also posted a .403 on-base percentage after drawing 49 walks. Nickeas, acquired in 2006 from Texas for Victor Diaz, threw out 35 percent of would-be base stealers in the Eastern League.

First base -- Nick Evans, Binghamton (88 games)/Buffalo (37 games): For the second straight season, Evans split his season between the Double-A Mets and Triple-A Bisons. The 24-year-old enjoyed his best season, setting a career high in several major offensive categories, including homers (23), RBIs (80), hits (146) and doubles (44). Evans, who tied for the organization lead in homers, earned a late-season promotion to the Majors, where he batted .306 in 20 games.

Second base -- Josh Satin, St. Lucie (58 games)/Binghamton (79 games): Satin, a sixth-rounder in 2008, was third in the organization with a .311 average. The California native drove in 77 runs and had 52 extra-base hits. His .867 OPS with the B-Mets would have ranked sixth in the Eastern League had he qualified.

Shortstop -- Wilmer Flores, Savannah (66 games)/St. Lucie (67 games): Just 18 years old for most of the season, Flores batted a combined .289 and set a career high with 11 home runs. A South Atlantic League All-Star with the Sand Gnats, Flores was second in the organization with 84 RBIs and had a combined 50 extra-base hits.

Third base -- Joe Bonfe, Brooklyn (72 games): Selected in the 21st-round in the June Draft, Bonfe made the New York-Penn League All-Star team after batting .326, which was second in the organization to teammate Darrell Ceciliani. The 22-year-old Minnesota native was also 8-for-10 in stolen base attempts and was second in the league with 88 hits.

Left field -- Lucas Duda, Binghamton (45 games)/Buffalo (70 games): The Mets seventh-round pick in 2007 exploded on to the scene in 2010, posting career-high numbers in most offensive categories. Duda led the organization with 23 homers and 87 RBIs and was seventh with a .304 average. Duda earned a late-season promotion to New York where he smacked 10 extra-base hits in 29 games.

Center field -- Darrell Ceciliani, Brooklyn (68 games): Ceciliani was one of eight Cyclones to make the New York-Penn League All-Star team and was probably the best of the bunch. The 2009 fourth-rounder led the league and organization with a .351 average and also paced the circuit with 56 runs scored. The 20-year-old Ceciliani smacked 33 extra-base hits, including 12 triples.

Right field -- Cory Vaughn, Brooklyn (72 games): Son of four-time Major League All-Star Greg, Cory displayed his father's power, slugging 14 homers for the Cyclones, second in the NYPL. Vaughn, a fourth-rounder in June's draft, drove in 56 runs and was fifth among Mets farmhands with a .307 average. The California native also stole 12 bases in 17 tries.

Designated hitter -- Kirk Nieuwenhuis, Binghamton (94 games)/Buffalo (30 games): A third-round pick in the 2008 Draft, Nieuwenhuis slumped upon reaching the Triple-A Bisons but enjoyed a strong year. The 23-year-old smacked 64 extra-base hits and was fifth in the organization with 77 RBIs. Despite only playing 94 games in the Eastern League, Nieuwenhuis still finished sixth with 35 doubles.

Left-handed starting pitcher -- Mark Cohoon, Savannah (13 games)/Binghamton (13 games): After being named a South Atlantic League All-Star for the Sand Gnats, Cohoon earned a promotion to Double-A. He struggled early, going 1-3 with a 7.24 ERA in his first seven starts for the B-Mets but came on strong down the stretch, posting a 1.63 ERA and winning three games in August and September. Overall, he was second in the organization with 12 wins and fifth with a 2.57 ERA.

Right-handed starting pitcher -- Yohan Almonte, Brooklyn (15 games): The 21-year-old Almonte led both the organization and the New York-Penn League with a 1.91 ERA, while tying for second in the league with eight victories. Almonte was named to the league's All-Star team where he tossed a perfect inning. The Dominican native was the only NYPL pitcher to throw a shutout in 2010.

Relief pitcher -- Manuel Alvarez, St. Lucie (18 games)/Binghamton (34 games)/Buffalo (four games): Though Alvarez faltered in a late-season promotion to Triple-A, losing two games for the Bisons, he was nearly unhittable most of the year. His 17 saves paced the organization, and he struck out 84 batters in 78 2/3 innings combined. He limited Florida State League hitters to a .148 average before his promotion and kept Eastern League batters in check to a .203 mark.

Robert Emrich is a contributor to This story was not subject to the approval of the National Association of Professional Baseball Leagues or its clubs.

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