We’re officially on the clock for Baseball Christmas, as Baseball America has released it’s first Mock Draft of the season. Though the Mets have picks at #’s 13 & 44 this year, BA only projects the first 33 (the first round, not including the supplemental first round). So, in a year that is considered to be a deep draft class (especially in both high school and college pitching), who are the Mets targeting with their first pick? Let’s see what they say:
13. METS: Though ownership is seeking new investors to provide some desperately needed cash, New York won’t have to make a budget-minded pick. Most of the best pitchers will have been selected, and the Mets would prefer a bat anyway. College outfielders George Springer (Connecticut) and Mikie Mahtook (Louisiana State) and Florida high school shortstop Javier Baez are possibilities, but New York may dig a little deeper and make outfielder Brandon Nimmo the first-ever prep first-rounder from Wyoming.
Projected Pick: Brandon Nimmo.
If you’re thinking “who?”, don’t worry, I actually pay attention to this stuff and I honestly was expecting a name a little more…familiar. Here’s what else BA says about him:
Nimmo’s high school doesn’t have a team, yet he’s a sure thing to be the highest-drafted player ever out of Wyoming (current record holder William Ewing was an Angels fourth-rounder in 1976). Nimmo is one of the best pure hitters in this year’s high school class. He’s also an above-average athlete who won a state title in the 400-meter dash this year and runs a 6.54-second 60-yard dash.
Also, BA Executive Editor Jim Callis writes that the Mets have him much higher on their draft board than other teams, and they think if they pass on him at 13, Nimmo (who has a college commitment to Arkansas) will not be around at 44, and their interest in him is not based on cost. He also mentions that he thinks Nimmo is a “toolsy outfielder with good makeup” and while the draft is over three weeks away, he has “good sources” that indicate this is where the Mets are leaning. With Nimmo not being as high on anyone else’s board, it’s a good bet that he should be around at 13, and the Mets will take him.
No word yet if people call him “Captain”, or if he refers to his bat as “the Nautilus”. No doubt The Times is on the case.
Overall, I have to say this pick makes me a little nervous. In a year that is considered deep in pitching, I would have liked one of those arms. Guys like Texas’ Taylor Jungmann and high scoolers like Tyler Guererri (S.C) and Archie Bradley (OK) are likely to be gone, but there are other arms like UCONN’s Matt Barnes that would still be around. Wyoming is not a baseball hotbed, players there have a more limited playing season than other areas of the country (even the Northeast) and Nimmo’s school doesn’t even have a team. He may be as good as advertised, but he also will probably need a while to develop raw skills. And for some reason I have that Jets fan form the 1983 draft saying he wanted Dan Marino but the Jets front office probably knows something about Ken O’Brian that we don’t. Of course, I have more confidence in Sandy & Co., so we’ll see…..