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Mets stock up on experienced Draft picks

Mets stock up on experienced Draft picks

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NEW YORK -- Unintentional as it may have been, the Mets went with college experience over high school potential time and again on Day 2 of the First-Year Player Draft on Tuesday.

Only two high schoolers, pitcher Akeel Morris and second baseman Dabias Johnson, were taken with the Mets' 28 second-day picks.

"There was no concerted effort as far as, 'We've got to take college players,'" Mets head of amateur scouting Rudy Terassas said. "We looked at the board and we lined them up the way that we liked them ability-wise, and we felt that these were the players we wanted to take."

Terassas and the Mets' front office took three position players to kick off the day, grabbing catcher Norman Forsythe from the University of Tennessee in the third round before selecting Cory Vaughn of San Diego State and Matt den Dekker of the University of Florida, both center fielders, with their next two picks.

From there, they stockpiled right-handed pitchers, taking seven in a row before bucking the trend with third baseman Brian Harrison of Furman in the 13th round.

In total, the Mets used exactly half of their picks (14) on right-handed pitchers, 11 on position players and the final three selections on left-handed pitchers.

"We were going to take the best player available, and when we made these selections, we felt very comfortable in, 'Hey, these were the guys we wanted to take,'" Terassas said.

Here are some notes on all of the Mets' picks from Day 2:

Round 3, Norman Forsythe, C, University of Tennessee: His older brother, Logan, was selected in the supplemental first round of the 2008 Draft by the Padres. He hit .283 and showed good plate discipline (.405 on-base percentage) while logging 15 home runs.

Round 4, Cory Vaughn, CF, San Diego State: The junior was drafted in the 43rd round by the Phillies coming out of high school, but elected to attend San Diego State, where he was coached by Tony Gwynn, a teammate of his father, Greg Vaughn, with the Padres in the late 1990s.

Round 5, Matt den Dekker, CF, University of Florida: The senior was a three-time all-SEC Defensive Team selection in his last three seasons at Florida. He was drafted in the 16th round by the Pittsburgh Pirates in 2009 but elected to come back to school for his senior season. Den Dekker led the Gators with a .361 batting average while hitting 13 homers and stealing 23 bases.

Round 6, Greg Peavy, RHP, Oregon State: Peavy went 6-3 with a 3.64 ERA in 15 starts during his junior season for the Beavers. The righty from Washington played in the Little League World Series as a kid.

Round 7, Jeffrey Walters, RHP, University of Georgia: The Mets drafted Walters for a record fifth time in the senior's baseball career. Walters struggled to move into a starting role this season, posting a 7.90 ERA in 68 1/3 innings.

Round 8, Kenneth McDowell, RHP, Southern Nevada: McDowell was teammates with the No. 1 overall pick of this year's Draft, Bryce Harper. On the mound, he went 5-1 and struck out 50 batters in 42 innings.

Round 9, Jacob Degrom, RHP, Stetson: The Hatters converted Degrom from shortstop and closer to starting pitcher in his junior season. He posted a 4.48 ERA in 82 1/3 innings, while walking just 16 batters.

Round 10, Akeel Morris, RHP, Charlotte Amelie HS: Morris is a high school pitcher from the Virgin Islands who threw a perfect game as a 17-year-old.

Round 11, Adam Koralek, RHP, Maryland: Adam's father, Frank, also played for Maryland and then for the Oakland A's from 1976-82.

Round 12, Bret Mitchell, RHP, Minnesota State: As a junior, Mitchell logged a 4.31 ERA in 94 innings while striking out 108 batters. Yet another strikeout pitcher drafted by the Mets, who were clearly targeting live arms in the middle of Day 2.

Round 13, Brian Harrison, 3B, Furman: Furman broke a streak of seven consecutive right-handed pitchers taken by the Mets. The third baseman missed part of the season, but showed plenty of power in limited time, posting a .367/.462/.734 battling line with 10 home runs in 109 at-bats.

Round 14, James Brown, 2B, University of the Pacific: Back-to-back infield picks landed them Brown, who led Pacific with a .376 batting average as a junior.

Round 15, Tillman Pugh, CF, Sonoma State: Pugh bounced around to three colleges in three years (starting with Arizona State as a freshman) and was drafted in the 16th round by the Mariners in 2009.

Round 16, Ryan Fraser, RHP, Memphis: Yet another college strikeout pitcher drafted by the Mets, who tabbed Fraser after he went 7-4 with a 5.77 ERA over 92 innings in his senior season. His durable arm also recorded 96 punchouts.

Round 17, Chad Sheppard, RHP, Northwestern State: Sheppard, a redshirt sophomore, was the first reliever taken by the Mets. He recorded 10 saves and posted a 3.60 ERA while striking out more than a batter per inning.

Round 18, Alexander Pinera, RHP, University of Tampa: Pinera had a strong senior season for Tampa, posting a 4.25 ERA and fanning 65 hitters on his way to an 8-1 record.

Round 19, Jonathan Kountis, RHP, Embry-Riddle University: Kountis was extremely hard to hit in his senior season, holding opposing batters to a .264 batting average in 88 innings. Kountis is another Mets draftee who struck out more than a batter per inning.

Round 20, Lucas Stewart, 1B, Alabama-Birmingham: Stewart was drafted in the 42nd round by the Padres out of high school and eventually landed at UAB after transferring from Georgia. He showed big-time power in his senior year, slugging .680 with 21 home runs in 194 at-bats.

Round 21, Dabias Johnson, 2B, Cook HS

Round 22, Brandon Brown, SS, South Alabama: Brandon's brother, Bo, played four seasons in the Braves' organization, and his cousin is country music star Alan Jackson.

Round 23, Drew Martinez, CF, Memphis: His father, Chito, was the first Belizean-born Major Leaguer and played three seasons for the Baltimore Orioles. The Mets' second selection from Memphis hit .377 as a sophomore with no real signs of power.

Round 24, Erik Goeddel, RHP, UCLA: Goeddel was a highly ranked pitching prospect coming out of high school, but an injury his senior year forced him to miss a lot of time. As a reliever for UCLA, he was very effective, going 2-0 with a 3.33 ERA and striking out 55 in 46 innings.

Round 25, Peter Birdwell, RHP, Vanguard University: At 6-foot-4, Birdwell brings a powerful right arm that was used out of the bullpen in college. He struggled in his senior year, though, posting a 6.43 ERA in 19 appearances and 35 innings while striking out 27.

Round 26, James Butler, SS, Mississippi State: Hit .329 in his senior season but drew only eight walks in 169 plate appearances.

Round 27, Michael Weldon, RHP, Wayland Baptist University: Struck out 219 batters over 166 1/3 innings in his junior and senior seasons.

Round 28, Jeremy Gould, LHP, Duke University: Gould hit .317 with seven home runs, but was drafted as a pitcher even though he made just seven appearances, all in relief, for the Blue Devils.

Round 29, Hamilton Bennett, LHP, Tennessee Weslyan College: Another lefty pitcher selection for the Mets late in Day 2, Bennett went 7-2 with a 3.64 ERA in 82 innings as a junior.

Round 30, Josh Edgin, LHP, Francis Marion University: The 6-foot-2, 225-pounder fits the crafty lefty prototype, as he struck out just 65 batters in 84 innings, but he notched two complete games and showed he can throw a lot of pitches.

Kyle Maistri is an associate reporter for MLB.com. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

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