Will Craig, Wake Forest (Photo: Brian Westerholt)
Baseball America rolled out their 3rd mock for the upcoming draft in June. Lets take a look at the two picks they projected for the Mets in the first round.
As we get closer to the draft, it seems more likely that the Mets are going to go with some college bats as they did with Michael Conforto. At No. 19, they have been projected to chose third baseman Will Craig.
Craig had a rough showing in the Cape Cod League, so using a wood bat could be a problem if we were to chose him. However, he has been pretty successful in the past two seasons at Wake Forest. He has good power and gets on base, as his .496 OBP last year would attest. This year, Craig is hitting .417 in 40 games and has matched his HR total already with 13. He also has a solid .551 OBP. His slugging numbers are also very good as he has posted a .702 in 2015 and .826 so far this year. Craig was actually drafted once before in the 37th-round by the Royals out of high school.
Craig’s success can’t only be described by his stats above, but also by the fact that he has contended for the Atlantic Coast Conference triple crown. In 2015, he was tabbed as the league’s player of the year as a sophomore. He’s chasing the ACC triple crown again this year.
Scouts have always raved about his hitting ability, but some have had concerns about his lack of athleticism, as his frame already has him at 235 pounds. Craig makes consistent hard contact with a fluid right-handed swing that generates some really impressive bat speed. He would be a nice pick for the Mets due to his feel for the strike zone, his plus power projection, and his ability to get on base.
Buddy Reed, Florida (Photo: Shotgun Spratling)
At No. 31, Baseball America projects the Mets to pick up another college bat. This time it’s three-sport star Buddy Reed, an outfielder out of Florida. Reed is a switch-hitter with a tall, athletic build. He has the potential to do a lot of things well on the baseball field. He’s a freak of an athlete as he was the leading scorer on his school’s soccer team and a standout hockey player as well.
Reed has plus speed that works on both sides of the ball. He should be a true base stealing threat and can definitely stay in center field long-term. However, it’s his bat that needs the most work and why he should still be available at 31.
He does tend to make contact from both sides of the plate, but his setup and approach are inconsistent. Reed has strength, which he’ll most likely grow into, but he lacks extension from the left side, and that should keep him from showing any power that way. With proper coaching, and changing Reed’s approach, he could definitely reach his offensive ceiling.
I’m not a huge fan of this mock draft by BA, but I wouldn’t mind either of these picks. Craig has all of the potential in the world, but he was said to have had a rough showing in the Cape Cod League, so I am a bit nervous to see how he transitions with a wood bat. Reed could be a solid pick, that’s only if he can work on his approach and make better and consistent hard contact. If he hits, he could be a very good center fielder for the Mets.