The 2017 MLB Draft is now just three days away. On Monday, June 12th, the Mets will make their selection for someone they hope will be their next big player. This is the sixth first round selection under Sandy Alderson. With Paul Depodesta as his deputy from 2011-2015, the Mets exclusively selected hitters with advanced approaches. Last year, with Tommy Tanous at the helm, the Mets took two college pitchers, Justin Dunn and Anthony Kay.
Carlson is a high school pitcher from Minnesota. His fastball has been at 93-97 this spring while getting good movement on his fastball. He likes his changeup and his slider is improving. He is ranked 15th on the MLB.com Top 200 Prospect List.
Lange on the other hand is a college righty who sits in the 92-96 range with his fastball and has a nice curveball. His control can be an issue because he falls into bad habits on the mound. He is ranked 23rd on the MLB.com draft list.
The Mets will have $6,212,500 to spend on their first ten draft picks. The Mets could go under slot and save up for high schoolers later on if they so pleased. Last year, the first ten picks were college players while they took more high school players later in the draft.
Baseball America released their latest mock draft this morning. They have the Mets taking high school lefty, Trevor Rogers. Rogers is from New Mexico ranks 49th on the Baseball America Top 100 Draft Prospect List and 25th on MLB.Com’s list. Rogers is a 6’6” lefty who often sits around 88-92 without much effort. He can hit the mid-90s and with his projectable frame, it is likely the velocity will improve. His breaking pitches will need work but certainly a prospect to keep an eye on.
Jim Callis of MLB.Com recently mocked the Mets to get first baseman, Nick Pratto. Nick Pratto is widely considered the most advanced high school bat in the class. He has a strong sense of the strike zone but the power is yet to develop and that could come later as he gets older. While that seems like a nice player, it sounds an awful lot like Dominic Smith. He would be the second first base-only player the Mets took in the first round under Sandy Alderson.
Two prospects who I personally like are Logan Warmoth and Keston Hiura. Warmoth is a college shortstop for the University of North Carolina. He is an good hitter with a strong knowledge of the strike zone. He has no great strength but he also has no big weakness in his game.
Hiura is the guy I absolutely want. He’s one of the most advanced college hitters in the country. He has a short stroke, great bat speed, and he hits for average power. Sounds an awful lot like the guy who’s a MVP candidate for the Mets, Michael Conforto. You might be wondering now, why a Conforto type hitter would fall to the Mets at the 20th pick?
Well, the catch is he has not played the field all that much and when he does, he is not a great one. He could need Tommy John Surgery, which hitters recover from much more quickly than pitchers. He could playe second or the outfield for the Mets. If he hits like Conforto or even like Conforto in 2015, his defense can be overlooked. We went to the World Series with a middle-infield of Wilmer Flores and Daniel Murphy. Murphy played second for five years in his Mets tenure and he was not the Murphy he is now.
DiComo mentioned the Mets could look at Warmoth or Hiura at 20 if they want a hitter. Most mock drafts have the Mets right in that range to get one of them. Keith Law of ESPN referred to Warmoth as a steal in his recent mock, where he picked them to get Warmoth at 20.
The draft can be a crap shoot. Ideally you’d like to at least get some filler players for the organization plus guys who can be legitimate player for you going forward. The best strategy is selecting the best player on your board and hoping other teams do not draft who you want. Michael Conforto in 2014 is an example. Monday should be an interesting day for the Mets.
2017 Draft Programming and Coverage Notes
Day 1: Round 1 through Competitive Balance Round A Live on MLB Network & MLB.com
Round 2 through Competitive Balance Round B Live on MLB.com
Preview show begins at 6 p.m.
Round 1 begins at 7 p.m.
The Mets first (20th overall) and second round (59th) will be covered here at MMO.
Day 2: Rounds 3-10 Live on MLB.com
Preview show begins at 12:30 p.m.
Round 3 begins at 1 p.m.
Day 3: Rounds 11-40
Live on MLB.com
Round 11 begins at noon