The MLB Draft kicked off last night, and all the attention for New York Mets' fans was on their team's first round choice. The Mets entered the night picking 10th overall, a pick that was protected regardless of who the team signed in free agency. With a system lacking in hitting prospects, the Mets have spent their last three first round picks on high school hitters under GM Sandy Alderson's regime. The Mets made it four for four picking hitters in the first round last night, but this time it was a collegian.
The Mets selected Oregon State outfielder Michael Conforto with their choice. Conforto, a junior, entered the season as the Sporting News' Preseason College Baseball Player of the Year. Conforto backed up the accolades with strong play, hitting .345 with seven home runs and 56 RBI's in 59 games. Conforto also showed a strong ability to get on base, compiling a .506 on base percentage for the season.
Conforto, who was named the Pac-12 Player of the Year for the second consecutive season, bats left handed and throws right. Conforto talked to reporters after being selected and described his approach at the plate as "relaxed aggression, smart intensity", which should fit in with what the Mets value in hitters. Conforto entered the draft widely regarded as the draft's best collegiate hitter, so the pick could be a massive boom for the Mets. It remains to be seen where he will be assigned after he is signed, but the fact he is polished as a collegian should help him reach the major leagues quicker than a typical high school prospect.
Here are some other notable Mets draft choices from earlier today:
2nd: None (Forfeited to sign Curtis Granderson)
3rd: SS Milton Ramos, American Heritage High School
4th: 3B Eudor Garcia, El Paso Community College
5th: RHP Josh Prevost, Seton Hall
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