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Recapping Day 1 of the 2019 MLB Draft

I think it’s safe to say that there is a lot of anger from fans regarding the New York Mets. There are many takes I’ve seen out there claiming the Mets are barren in the Farm System, and that the Minor League system struggles as a whole.

One thing the New York Mets rarely get credit for is the fact that historically they have drafted well. In no particular order:

That’s a decent list of players that really worked out for the Mets. An argument can be made about trading these pieces, but that’s something to discuss in another column for another day.

 

Last night was Brodie Van Wagenen’s first MLB Draft, an important night for sure for the new general manager of the team, especially considering the success the Mets have had historically with their first round picks. Last night Van Wagenen had the 12th overall pick to make his mark.

That turned into 3B Brett Baty out of Lake Travis High School in Texas. Baty is an older kid for a high schooler at 20. You can learn more about him from Ricky Keeler’s article last night breaking down all you need to know about the newest Mets Prospect.

I’m interested in the upside Baty brings with him, his bat certainly sounds impressive. As per Baseball America, he’s the 3rd best hitter, has the 2nd best power, and the 3rd best strike-zone judgment of his draft class. With 1B Pete Alonso looking more like a permanent fixture with the Mets it’d be interesting to see what Baty can develop into. Mets fans should salivate at the thought of having two power bats in the corner infield. Of the entire draft class, which admittedly is weak, Baty likely had the best offensive upside.

The Mets weren’t done though, they also had the 53rd pick, in the second round which led to the team drafting RHP Josh Wolf out of St. Thomas High School in Texas.

This is the pick that the Mets would have given up to potentially sign pitchers Dallas Keuchel or Craig Kimbrel so it’s interesting to see how Wolf turns out, especially as the Mets have concerns for this year. I like the idea that they held onto their draft pick, however. It’s been long since time to refresh the farm system. Wolf currently has a commitment to Texas A&M but many believe he can be bought out.

What’s most intriguing about this pick is how quickly Wolf developed this year alone, improving his fastball velocity from 90 mph to 92 mph, maxing out at 97. A good 12-6 curveball and a changeup come with Wolf’s arsenal and it will be intriguing to see how he develops with the Mets, should he choose to go pro.

When Brodie Van Wagenen was first hired by the Mets to be their General Manager, I had remarked that it was a gamble. Gambling has been the style of this team in the Van Wagenen era. The draft has continued along this thread with the Mets opting for prospects with higher risk margins than usual. It will be interesting to see in the coming days if this stays true to form, or if the Mets will go with more conservative selections in days two and three of the draft.

The Mets have a tall order to replenish a farm system that’s on the weak side. Especially with recent promotions and trades, there are a number of holes to be filled in the organization. Let’s see how Van Wagenen rolls the dice next.

 

 

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