MLB.com released their Top 50 Draft prospects for the 2018 draft including two names they connected to the Mets.
The Mets will pick sixth, their highest pick under Sandy Alderson and their highest since taking Matt Harvey seventh overall in 2010. Alderson’s previous highest pick was Michael Conforto tenth overall.
The draft is a while from now so players will go up or down based on their spring performances. The number six player on this list is Nander De Sedas. Sedas is a shortstop who went to the same high school as star SS, Francisco Lindor. He’s ahead of Lindor’s curve in terms of his offense but isn’t regarded as highly of a fielder Lindor is.
Drafts aren’t as simple as teams taking the number one guy on these lists though. A lot of stuff such as sign-ability and bonus pool money comes into play. With that, lets look at other players.
Nolan Gorman, ranked No.4, stands out at third base. He is a big time power hitter but has a mediocre glove. Should be a great hitter and someone who you would live with at third base defensively. The 17-year-old left-handed hitter has committed to going to Arizona. He won the MLB All-Star Game High School Home Run Derby in Miami earlier this year.
Outfielder Jarred Kelenic, ranked No. 12, is another name the Mets should consider. The 18-year-old left-handed hitter has every tool and oozes with potential. He’s a high risk but high reward pick, and his stock could go up or down based on the Spring he has. Kelenic is committed to Louisville though he’s likely the first ever player from Wisconsin taken in the top 10.
Shortstop Brice Turang may very well be sitting at sixth and MLB.com’s Jonathan Mayo predicts the Mets will select him if he is. Turang is a well-rounded player that lacks a pure plus tool. His arm and range make him an asset defensively at shortstop in the long-term. The recently turned 18-year-old has committed to Louisiana State.
Over on the college hitters side, there are two names who are interesting; shortstop Jeremy Eierman and outfielder Griffin Conine.
Between the two, I think Duke product Conine is the better hitter. Conine, ranked No.19, has fewer holes in his swing compared to Eierman. I’m a big fan of the 20-year-old Conine. He should move quickly through the organization and succeed quickly as a hitter. Think a Conforto-lite or even Alex Bregman and Andrew Benintendi in that matter.
Eierman, ranked No.13, plays shortstop but will likely shift over to third base in the long run. He should be a plus defender over there given his arm strength. The 21-year-old right-handed hitter was one of just two NCAA Division I players to total 20 homers and 15 steals in 2017 while playing for Missouri State.
The draft could be pitcher heavy in the top 10. Right-hander Brady Singer is number one draft prospect and has been a popular first overall pick in most mock drafts too. The 21-year-old has a constistent fastball in the 95-96 MPH range with good late life and a plus slider that gives him two big league pitches already.
Ethan Hankins is a 6’6″ pitcher who has an 80-grade fastball that could lead to him being the first ever prep right-hander to go first overall. His delivery is low effort and is easily repeatable. His breaking pitches are improving and most mock’s have him going second overall after Singer.
Shane McClanahan, ranked No.5, was mocked to the Mets in Baseball America’s Mock Draft and by MLB.com Jim Callis. McClanahan was picked by the Mets in 2015 but did not sign. He’s a 20-year-old lefty that has already had Tommy John surgery but has bounced back with a fastball that can hit 97 MPH. His best secondary pitch is a changeup with his slider not far behind.
Matthew Liberatore is another potential pick for the Mets. His scouting report is very similar to that of Mackenzie Gore’s who went third overall in 2017. The No.3 ranked prospect by MLB.com is a rare prep starter that already has three above average pitches in his fastball, changeup and curve. The 18-year-old is also rare because he has garnered attention for consistency and control of his pitches instead of velocity.
If I had a say in this, and I don’t, I’d suggest the Mets take Jarred Kelenic, Griffin Conine, or Nolan Gorman if he is there. With all this said, I think if Ethan Hankins is sitting there at number six, then whoever doing the drafting for the Mets should be running up with a draft card with his Hankins’ name on it.