Wednesday, December 9, 2009

Remember the Can't Miss Mets Prospect: David West

Fill in the blank: The latest Mets Prospect to become a complete bust is: _________. One of the first Mets prospect busts that I remember is David West.

David West was the can't miss prospect in the mid to late '80s for the New York Mets. He started the International League all-star game for two straight years before the Mets traded him to the Twins in 1989.

In return for David West, Rick Aguilera, Tim Drummond and Kevin Tapani, the Mets received Frank Viola. Viola was supposed to be the missing piece for the NY Mets. He had a 2 1/2 good seasons with the Mets before moving on, but couldn't bring the Mets to the playoffs.

In three full seasons with the Twins, West went 12-16 with a 5.16 ERA. He never became the ace of a staff as projected.

Ironically, West did win a World Series ring with the Twins in 1991. He was also part of the 1993 Phillies who lost to the Blue Jays. Frank Viola never made it back to the post-season after he left Minnesota


deal said...

West may not have lived up to his early promise, but he did make it on to a couple of World Series teams - note he was miserable in the post season however.

His years with the Phil were a roller coaster, but he was absolutely critical as a set up guy with Larry Andersen on the 93 team.

I gather he has been a pretty private individual after baseball - but he did attend Harry Kalas Memorial Service this past spring.

James said...

@Deal - It is ironic that after the trade he was in more WS games than Viola. Rick Aguilera was probably the best player after the trade.

Carl Crawford Cards said...

I had a TON of West cards back in the day. Seems like the late-80s and early 90's were the heyday of "can't miss but did" big name pitching prospects.

James said...

@Carl - I know how you feel. I had several Greg Jeffries, Lastings Millege, and Alex Escobar cards! There's something in the water in Flushing, NY I guess.

Anonymous said...

Gregg Jeffries was the one that I remember being a huge bust. Looking back, he was a decent player, he just wasn't everything he was "supposed" to be.

His 1988 Donruss cards were hot at the beginning of the season, but now you can get a hundred for a penny.