Posted by JD on June 7, 2010
As you undoubtedly know by now, the Mets selected Matt Harvey with the seventh overall pick in the amateur draft. I’ve mentioned before that I’m not a draft expert, but even though I know nothing about Harvey as a prospect I’m happy with the selection. Oddly enough, that’s directly related to the fact that Harvey has retained super agent Scott Boras to represent him. As Ken Davidoff tweeted: “U don’t draft a Boras guy & then get cheap.” It’s a sign that they’re willing to spend some extra money to secure a player they like, which is all I wanted to see from them.
How Harvey will turn out? Well, here’s some historical perspective: on this date in 1967 the Mets drafted Steve Chilcott first overall. He became the first number one pick to fail to appear in the majors, and to add insult to injury, the A’s took Reggie Jackson with the second pick. But on the same date in 1982 the Mets drafted Dwight Gooden with the fifth pick. Not to get too snarky, but I think it’s safe to say that Harvey projects somewhere between the two.
Harvey has a way to go before he’s ready for the majors and Terry Collins and the rest of the minor league coordinators, instructors, and coaches will have to put in a lot of work to get him there. Luck will enter the equation at some point: career ending injuries can happen to the greatest athletes at any time. All of that is on the table and it’s hard to forecast how it will end, but at least the Mets didn’t unnecessarily limit themselves when they made the pick. That’s about the most you can hope for on draft day, and the Mets didn’t disappoint this year.
Post Script: @tmmets29 tweeted the following after I finished this post: “We’ll see if they make some reaches in later rounds though. Easy to spend on first rounder.” And he’s absolutely right. The possibility exists that because they’re willing to spend on their first rounder, the Mets will look for signable prospects in the later rounds. We have to guard against that possibility and not let management and ownership off the hook, but I will say this: it wouldn’t be a bad thing if we saw a Boras client or two in the next few rounds. Again, it would be a blatant signal to the fans that the team is willing to spend.
And please forgive the conspiracy theory that’s about to follow, but might it impact the status of a certain loopy lefty? If the Mets were to draft a few Boras clients and meet their contract demands, might he in turn convince Oliver Perez to accept a demotion to Buffalo? This certainly qualifies as rampant speculation: I don’t even know how many Boras clients when the Mets pick again at 89 (though I suspect there will be more than one). I don’t know and I’m just throwing it out there but either way, the Mets will have about 45-50 more picks to demonstrate that they’re unafraid to spend and, conspiracy theories aside, they should open their wallets and make it rain as often as they can.