Don’t look now, but the New York Mets had one of the top-five scouting departments in the MLB during the 2010s. Thank you, Sandy Alderson.
According to Baseball America, the New York Mets had the fifth-most production come from draft picks and international free-agent signings in baseball. Only the Houston Astros, Chicago White Sox, Miami Marlins, and Toronto Blue Jays had more.
The teams that drafted (and signed) the most productive talent of the 2010s…
— Baseball America (@BaseballAmerica) December 31, 2019
This shouldn’t come as much of a surprise. The Mets have had a ton of homegrown talent all decade.
New York had homegrown players lead them in fWAR from 2011-2014 and again in 2017-2019. That’s seven of the ten seasons in this previous decade. The biggest contributor to that was Jacob deGrom, who led the Mets in fWAR four times this decade and each of the last three years. The other three seasons were led by Jose Reyes, David Wright, and Matt Harvey.
That’s astonishingly good scouting on the Mets’ part. Not a single one of those players was a first-round pick. Alonso was the highest draft selection out of the trio, having been chosen in the second round in 2016 out of the University of Florida. His signing bonus was just $909,200.
deGrom was a ninth-round pick in 2010 out of Stetson University. He played shortstop for the majority of his collegiate playing days. He didn’t switch to pitching until halfway through his junior year. Even then, he was still primarily a shortstop.
In his senior year, deGrom took over as the team’s closer but was moved into the starting rotation midway through the season.
He was a nobody coming out of school. Yet, the Mets took a chance on him. Now, deGrom is arguably the best pitcher in majors. Hats off to the Mets scouting department.
McNeil was a 12th-round pick in 2013 out of Long Beach State. He was an often injured but talented hitter coming out of school. Most didn’t know what position he would play, or how much power he would hit for. Needless to say, it was a gamble on his hit tool and athleticism.
McNeil has rewarded that gamble and then some these last two years.
Mets fans, remember this when the next draft rolls around.