The first part of the Mets rebuilding effort begins this Thursday. The Mets have 5 of the top 100 picks in this year's MLB Amateur Draft including picks 18, 22 and 33. The extra picks are courtesy of Tom Glavine signing with the Braves. For a team that has given up draft picks by signing free agents the last several years, this is an opportunity they cannot afford to waste.
Much has been made about the Mets adhering to slot recommendations that the commissioner puts out. Other teams such as the Yankees, Red Sox and the Tigers have ignored the slot recommendations and successfully restocked their farm systems. The fact is the Mets have had so few high-level picks they haven't been able to fully take advantage of their financial advantages even if they wanted to. Sure they could have signed Pedro Beato a couple of years back, but he hasn't been a great loss as of yet. And the Mets did swoop in and take Mike Pelfrey and Scott Kazmir when they dropped because of signability issues. Despite ESPN.com and Baseball America's claims, Minaya has been coy about whether the Mets will abide by the slot rules this year.
The greatest mistake teams make with the draft is to make their picks based on need. The Rays may be about to do that by taking catcher Buster Posey instead of Pedro Alvarez or Tim Beckham. The Mets shouldn't need to worry too much about that because their farm system needs everything. Of course since their strength or perceived strength is in the lower minors, the Mets may lean toward taking college players who are closer to helping. Again, that would be a mistake if they were not the best available player in the draft.
In the coming days, the monkeys will look at some of the players that have been linked to the Mets. It is possible next year the Mets will have a bounty of picks since they may lose either Pedro Martinez or Oliver Perez to free agency and they will almost certainly offer each arbitration. The future starts Thursday... Choose wisely, Omar. And remember, you are a big market team. You can do this:
The Mets have hinted they will sit Ryan Church and Brian Schneider tonight. As hard as it will be to sit Church after his performance yesterday, this is a wise move. Church had problems after flying to Colorado. Ease him in. He has become too important to this team to take chances. Schneider should be sitting tonight even if the Mets had to play a game that was a bike ride away. Castro, if healthy, should always face lefties. And while Willie's at it, is there any reason to play Delgado two games against lefties after a long flight like that?