Here’s a round-up of the Mets selections of the 2012 First Year Player Draft which continues today and into tomorrow. I am including comment from MLB Draft Guru Jonathan Mayo or some other dignitary, for the first five rounds and also including their Baseball America rank in the Top 500 Draft Prospects.
Round 1 (#12) – Gavin Cecchini, SS, High School (LA)
Jonathan Mayo: Cecchini has a quick stroke with good extension, enabling him to make consistent hard contact. He’s got mostly gap power now and his speed plus instincts allow him to be a basestealing threat and take the extra base. Those instincts also help him defensively. While his hands are good and he grades out as average with his arm and range, some think a move to second might be better. Either way, this scrappy middle infielder is sure to get plenty of looks in the spring.
Baseball America Rank: 16
Comp Rd. (#35) – Kevin Plawecki, C, Purdue
Jonathan Mayo: Plawecki is an offensive catcher with a lot of ability with the bat. He makes consistent contact with a short swing that allows him to stay in the center of the field. With a contact first approach, Plawecki’s power is fringy right now, but there’s a lot of strength to potentially tap into in the future. While his arm is fringe average, at best, the other parts of his defensive game are more than fine to stay behind the plate. He works with pitchers well, calling his own game. He has good hands, frames pitches and blocks them well. He has the size and body frame you want from a catcher.
Baseball America Top 500 Rank: 67
Round 2 (#71) – Matt Reynolds, 3B, Arkansas
Jonathan Mayo: While he might not be among the top tier of college bats in this class, he has some skills that could translate at the next level. With a balanced set-up at the plate, Reynolds has a good approach and hits line drives. He doesn’t have a ton of power, mostly to the gaps, and is more consistent to the pull side. Without average power, Reynolds will have to learn how to hit to all fields. He’s a heads-up baserunner who will swipe some bases even without particularly good speed. He’s a very good defender, with the potential to be above average with his arm and fielding to go along with solid average range. Reynolds plays mostly third, but has seen time at shortstop, and that kind of flexibility will only help his value. If the bat doesn’t progress, he could have a very good future as a utility type.
Baseball America Top 500 Rank: 147
Round 2 (#75) – Teddy Stankiewicz, RHP, High School (TX)
Jonathan Mayo: High school pitchers are often projectable. Sometimes, they have good pitchability. Every once in a while, there’s one like Stankiewicz, who’s a little bit of both. Tall and lanky, there’s room for growth in the Texas prep right-hander’s frame. That could mean a few more ticks to a fastball that can already touch 93 and sits in the 88-91 mph range. Stankiewicz backs up the fastball with plus pitching instincts, mixing in three other pitches for strikes. His slider is the better of his two breaking balls, but both could be at least Major League average. He may not throw the changeup that much at this level, but he shows a good feel for it. If the fastball develops into a plus pitch and his secondary stuff is average to go along with his outstanding command and mound presence, this is a Major League starter in the making.
Baseball America Top 500 Rank: 137
Round 3 (#107) – Matt Koch, RHP, Univ. of Louisville
Jonathan Mayo: While Koch has shared closing duties with senior Derek Self at Louisville this season, he’s still shown enough with a good two-pitch power repertoire to garner some attention. The lean, wiry and strong right-hander will throw his fastball up to 94 mph, sitting comfortably a tick below that. There’s some good life to the heater as well, and he commands it well. He also throws strikes with a hard slider that has good bite and depth. Koch seems to have the right mentality for a life in short relief, showing a willingness to take the ball at the end of the game and go right after hitters. Two Major League average or better power pitches with good command should be enough to get Koch drafted early and should help him move up the ladder quickly.
Baseball America Top 500 Rank: 61
Round 4 (#140) – Branden Kaupe, SS, High School (Hawaii)
Perfect Game: Scouts from the mainland got an early look at the top high-school talent in Hawaii, and left with the impression that the 5-foot-5, 175-pound Kaupe was the best talent in this year’s class. Despite his obvious lack of size, Kaupe showcased impressive speed and solid actions at shortstop, though he probably faces a shift across the bag to second base as he advances. Kaupe also showed some ability as a switch-hitter to drive balls.
Baseball America Top 500 Rank: Unranked (uh oh, I smell trouble)
Round 5 (#170) - Brandon Welch, RHP, Palm Beach State College
Jonathan Mayo: Welch is one of the more intriguing prospects in the Draft. His fastball sits in the mid 90s, and he also has a hard slider. He has excellent command of both pitches and rarely walks a batter. However, Welch is not the biggest guy in the world, leading some scouts to think he will be a reliever at the next level. Either way, Welch’s aggressive nature and pure stuff are what will get him drafted.
Baseball America Top 500 Rank: 135
Rd. 6 (200), Jayce Boyd, 1B, Florida State
Rd. 7 (230), Corey Oswalt, RHP, Madison (Calif.) HS
Rd. 8 (260), Tomas Nido, C, Orangewood Christian (Calif.) HS
Rd. 9 (290), Richie Rodriguez, 2B, Eastern Kentucky
Rd. 10 (320), Paul Sewald, RHP, San Diego
Rd. 11 (350), Logan Taylor, RHP, Eastern Oklahoma State JC
Rd. 12 (380), Rob Whalen, RHP, Haines City (Fla.) HS
Rd. 13 (410), Matt Bowman, RHP, Princeton
Rd. 14 (440), Chris Flexen, RHP, Newark Memorial (Calif.) HS
Rd. 15 (470), Nick Grant, RHP, Milford (Del.) HS
Rd. 17 (530), Stefan Sabol, C, Orange Coast CC
Rd. 18 (560), Paul Paez, LHP, Rio Hondo College
Rd. 19 (590), Tyler Vandenheiden, RHP, Samford U
Rd. 20 (620), Tim Peterson, RHP, Kentucky
Rd. 21 (650), Gary Ward, LHP, Bethel U.
Rd. 22 (680), Tejay Antone, RHP, Legacy (Texas) HS
Rd. 23 (710), Connor Baits, RHP, Point Loma (Calif,) HS
Rd. 24 (740), Andrew Massie, RHP, Dyer County (Tenn.) HS
Rd. 25 (770), Leon Byrd, 2B, Cypress Ranch (Texas) HS
Rd. 26 (800), Chris Shaw, 1B, Lexington (Mass.) HS
Rd. 27 (830), Zach Arnold, C, Franklin County (Ky.) HS
Rd. 28 (860), Jacob Marks, RHP, St. Clair SS
Rd. 29 (890), Austin Barr, C, Camas (Wash.) HS
Rd. 30 (920), Dustin Cook, RHP, Hargrave (Texas) HS
Rd. 31 (950), Vance Vizcaino, SS, Wakefield (N.C.) HS
Rd. 32 (980), Jon Leroux, 1B/C, Northeastern
Rd. 33 (1010), Jared Price, RHP, Twin Valley (Pa.) HS
Rd. 34 (1040), Mikey White, SS, Spain Park (Ala.) HS
Rd. 35 (1070), Brad Markey, RHP, Sante Fe (Fla.) CC
Rd. 36 (1100), Donovan Walton,SS, Bishop Kelly (Okla.) HS
Rd. 37 (1130), Ben Distefano, C, Lawrence E. Elkins (Texas) HS
Rd. 38 (1160), Jeff Reynolds, 3B, Harvard
Rd. 39 (1190), Patrick Ervin, 2B, Pace (Fla.) HS
Rd. 40 (1220), David Gonzalez, RHP, Gainesville (Ga.) HS