The monkeys can't claim to have intimate knowledge of Omar Minaya and his team's draft strategy. The truth is neither does Baseball America, ESPN or MLB.com. However, there are a few names that have popped up frequently on these and other mock drafts. Here are a few of them:
Jason Castro, Catcher (Stanford): Castro has shown he can hit for average and power. This summer he hit .341 in the Cape Cod League. Scouting reports say that he has better speed than most catchers. He is improving defensively though his arm strength is average. Baseball America ranks him as the third best catcher in the draft behind possible top pick Buster Posey and Kyle Skipworth.
Ike Davis, 1B/OF -- The son of former Yankee setup man, Ron Davis, has excellent raw power and a strong arm. His speed though is only average. BA ranks him as the third best power hitter in college behind only Pedro Alvarez, another possible option for top pick and Justin Smoak. Reports that he is sometimes low energy are a slight red flag since the monkeys have seen enough of this type of player.
Andrew Cashner, Pitcher -- Omar Minaya likes to draft relievers that are close to helping the big league team. The monkeys would have thought that Omar filled his quota last year with Eddie Kunz, the Mets AA closer and Brant Rustich (Low A Ball). Still Cashner throws a consistent 96-98 MPH fastball which BA ranks as the third best in college. His command is sometimes a concern.
Ethan Martin, Pitcher/3B --- One of a few projected first round picks that will force a team to make a decision whether to develop the player as a hitter or a pitcher. Martin throws a fastball in the mid-90's (BA ranks him second for high school prospects) and an above average curveball. He is also a plus defender with raw power. Big, strong and projectable.
David Cooper, 1B -- One of many quality first basemen in the draft. Cooper has strong forearms and great hand-eye coordination, but questionable bat speed. He is a patient hitter, but defense and speed are slightly below par.
Anthony Hewitt, SS -- Listed as best athlete in HS by BA, they also call him the classic high risk/high reward pick. The Mets have picked toolsy guys like him in the past. His pitch recognition still needs work. Many scouts feel he'll move to center. And he may be tough to sign since he has committed to Vanderbilt.
Now that ESPN2 covers the draft and the Mets actually have some good picks, the monkeys are very excited about this Thursday. The rebuilding of this slightly barren farm system is about to begin.
Of course, no draft was ever as exciting as in 1980 when the Mets had first pick and selected: