One of the most exciting position-player prospects in all of baseball headlines the Mets' two-man class on MLBPipeline.com's 2017 Top 100 Prospects list.
Long known as the best prospect in the Mets' system, shortstop Amed Rosario now joins the ranks of the game's elite Minor Leaguers, coming in at No. 5 on the list. Joining Rosario on the list is first baseman Dominic Smith, the Mets' first-round Draft pick in 2013, at No. 63.
The annual ranking of MLB's Top 100 prospects is assembled by MLBPipeline.com Draft and prospect experts Jonathan Mayo, Jim Callis and Mike Rosenbaum, who compile input from industry sources, including scouts and scouting directors. It is based on analysis of players' skill sets, upsides, proximity to the Majors and potential immediate impact to their teams. Only players with rookie status entering the 2017 season are eligible for the list. Players who were at least 23 years old when they signed and played in leagues deemed to be professional (Japan, Korea, Taiwan, Cuba) are not eligible.
Rosario -- a tall, agile shortstop who turned 21 in November -- jumped six spots from his midseason ranking after dominating at Double-A following a midseason callup. The Mets are not expected to rush Rosario, not with veteran shortstop Asdrubal Cabrera, one of their top performers from a year ago, signed through this season with a club option for 2018.
But given the way Rosario performed at Double-A Binghamton last season, there may not be much challenge for him left in the upper levels of the Minor Leagues. Rosario hit .341/.392/.481 in 54 games at Double-A, and .324/.374/.459 with five home runs, 13 triples and 19 stolen bases across two levels in 2016. The Mets gave Rosario a $1.75 million signing bonus as a 16-year-old in 2012, still the largest amount the club has given to an amateur international player.
Smith, 21, enjoyed his best professional season in 2016, spending the entirely of it with Binghamton. After entering the season with 10 professional home runs over 309 career games, Smith hit 14 homers in 130 games while showing improved plate discipline. He was able to add that power without sacrificing his line-drive approach -- Smith hit .302 after hitting .305 the previous year at the Class A Advanced level.
Smith's MLB debut is likely at least a year away, but if he continues to produce, he'll likely become the Mets' sixth first-round pick to reach the Majors since 2012.
Joe Trezza is a reporter for MLB.com based in New York. Follow him on Twitter at @joetrezz. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.