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Mets, Stearns Likely To ‘Shift Draft Philosophy’ For 2024

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With the 2024 MLB Draft less than a week away (Sunday, July 14), the Mets appear to change their approach to drafting future talent. On Days 1 and 2 of the Draft, the team has the 19th pick (which was dropped ten spots for exceeding the competitive balance tax by more than $40 million), 46th pick, 82nd pick, 111th pick and 144th pick, and then will have a pick in rounds six through 20.

Many might wonder what new president of baseball operations David Stearns has in store for his first Draft in Queens, particularly how he might approach it because how you draft defines the type of team you want to build. According to a report from The Athletics Will Sammon, several industry members believe the Mets might shift their draft philosophy with Stearns and VP of amateur scouting Kris Gross at the helm. In addition, the belief is the Mets might do a mixture of what the Brewers and Astros have done in the past and sign “explosive athletes with big tools and pitchers with raw electric stuff.”

Stearns and Gross’ Draft Success Rate

It’s no shock Stearns didn’t have the best luck in the draft during his time in Milwaukee, but he has used this approach in signing players wherever he goes. Gross meanwhile oversaw five Drafts during his time in Houston, having success in both the early and late rounds with players cracking the big club roster. He was responsible for the signings of SS Jeremy Peña (3rd round), Korey Lee (1st round), RHP Hunter Brown (5th round), C Garrett Stubbs (8th round), LHP Patrick Sandoval (11th round) and OF Jake Meyers (13th round).

Since 2012, when Gross joined the Astros organization, the club has a league-high 64 players they drafted and signed to either appear in the Majors with the team or another MLB team.

Jett Williams, Photo by Ed Delany of Metsmerized

Mets Recent Drafts

In recent years, the Mets have drafted the likes of SS Colin Houck, C Kevin Parada, INF Jett Williams, P Kumar Rocker, OF Pete Crow-Armstrong, 3B Brett Baty and OF Jarred Kelenic in the first round alone. The results are a mixed bag at best, looking at these players. Baty has struggled during his MLB time but continues to mash in Syracuse.

Williams looks prized to be one of the best grabs in quite some time and might debut in Queens as soon as 2025, with Houck looking like he can shape into a solid everyday player. Parada has struggled mightily at times but has also shown strides of promise. Armstrong and Kelenic are no longer with the club, and Rocker never even signed a contract.

2024 Draft Projections

While Draft standouts like Travis Bazzana and Jac Caglianone won’t see the light of day after the fifth pick, the Mets still have plenty of options for their first pick at No. 19.

ESPN’s Kiley McDaniel, who also reports that the Mets are looking to target “big tools and outstanding athletic types,” has the Mets drafting RHP Brody Brecht from the University of Iowa. Brecht is MLB’s No. 21 ranked prospect in the Draft, with his fastball and slider comparable to Pirates’ ace Paul Skenes when Brecht is dialed in. McDaniel also notes the Mets could take RHP William Schmidt (No. 16), LHP Kash Mayfield (No. 30), or RHP Dax Whitney (No. 56) on the pitching side, and OF Vance Honeycutt (N0. 22), SS Griff O’Ferrall (No. 38), OF Dakota Jordan (No. 34) or SS Tyson Lewis (No. 39) on the position player side. (Lewis or Whitney might even spill over to the second round).

In Baseball America’s latest mock Draft, the Mets select Seaver King, an OF/SS (No. 17) out of Wake Forest. With a name like Seaver, it must be fate, right? Carlos Collazo doesn’t believe King will make it this far but has heard the Mets connected to OF Carson Benge (No. 18) and power bats like 3B Tommy White (No. 20), 3B Billy Amick (No. 32) and the previously mentioned Jordan and Honeycutt. However, King is another name that fits right into Stearns’ plans — he’s a versatile player with high upside.

Final Thoughts

When the Mets brought in David Stearns, it signaled a new dawn in Flushing for the ball club. We got to see him take an immediate impact in the offseason and see how it played out almost halfway into the season. Now, it’s time to see him put his mark on the farm system, an aspect of the Mets that has continued to trend in the right direction over the past couple of years.

The post Mets, Stearns Likely To ‘Shift Draft Philosophy’ For 2024 appeared first on Metsmerized Online.

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