Brandon Nimmo is Mets First-Round Draft Pick

As their first-round pick, the Mets have drafted 18-year-old outfielder Brandon Nimmo out of Wyoming. Here are the details from an official New York Mets press release:

Nimmo, 18, who bats lefthanded and throws righthanded, plays American Legion ball for Post 6, since Wyoming has no high school baseball. In 22 games through June 5, Nimmo hit .569 (33-58) with 13 doubles, four triples, two home runs, 34 RBI and 14 stolen bases. The schedule for Post 6 runs through the American Legion World Series, August 12-16 in Shelby, NC.

The 6-3, 190-pound native of Cheyenne, WY won the MVP award at the Under Armour All-America Game at Wrigley Field last August, going 2-4 with a triple, two RBI and two runs scored for the American Team. Baseball America ranked Nimmo has the second-best high school athlete in the draft, and the second-best pure high school hitter. The publication also said Nimmo has the second-best strike-zone judgement of all high school draft prospects.

Nimmo is the first ever first-round selection from Wyoming.

Last season for Post 6, Nimmo hit .448 (95-212) with 23 doubles, six triples, 15 home runs and 84 RBI in 70 games, 69 starts. He was a perfect 34-34 in stolen base attempts, helping Post 6 to a 64-12 record.

First things first: I know absolutely nothing about Nimmo, nor do I know anything about anyone in the draft. From what I understand, Nimmo is a gifted athlete with major upside, and was “on the board” of many MLB teams.

There are two concerns that jump right out: first, he didn’t play any high school baseball, because Wyoming doesn’t have such a thing (it gets too cold during the school year). Personally, I don’t see the lack of high school experience as a major issue — if the kid has skills, he has skills.

The other issue — and one that does mildly concern me — is the fact he blew out his knee playing football during his junior year, requiring surgery on his ACL. However, he was running the 60-yard dash in 6.5 seconds after the surgery, which is pretty quick, and he ran the 400-meter during the track season — so going by that it could be assumed that his knee problems are behind him. However, running in a straight line and running around a baseball field — i.e., around the bases, in the outfield — are two different things. There is a lot of starting and stopping, turning, and sideways movements. It’s been reported in several outlets that Nimmo struggled with some tendinitis in that knee during this past spring.

I don’t want to make a huge deal out of the knee injury, just want to put it out there. Other than that, it appears that the Mets have picked a highly touted, coveted, widely respected ballplayer.

Here is a video of Nimmo, found by OnTheBlack.com:

Here is another one from Baseball America; his swing looks good, and reminds me a little bit of Shawn Green:

Joe Janish began MetsToday in 2005 to provide the unique perspective of a high-level player and coach -- he earned NCAA D-1 All-American honors as a catcher and coached several players who went on to play pro ball. As a result his posts often include mechanical evaluations, scout-like analysis, and opinions that go beyond the numbers. Follow Joe's baseball tips on Twitter at @onbaseball and at the On Baseball Google Plus page.
  1. gary s. June 6, 2011 at 11:30 pm
    Beautiful.Before he puts on a pro uniform he already has a knee issue.He can call Fernando Martinez for a good doctor.
  2. NormE June 7, 2011 at 10:03 am
    The kid looks as if he has a nice compact swing. Who knows?
  3. izzy June 7, 2011 at 10:10 am
    The concern to me is that by picking two HS kids vice college kids the Met FO has indicated that there is going to be an extremely slow rebuilding process. Hence, any thoughts of the Mets keeping Reyes should be gone now. Good bye Jose, I hope you go to a team I can root for but I expect you’ll be in Boston the Bronx or Philly next year.
  4. Mike June 7, 2011 at 12:52 pm
    It’s going to take 2.5-3 million to sign him. Those have been his demands. This is a ballsy move by the Mets FO, shows they are truly taking a new approach. Woot!
  5. Tommy2cat June 8, 2011 at 9:03 am
    Joe -

    Thanks for the footage. Selecting 2 HS ballplayers and retaining Jose Reyes are not mutually exclusive, as one previous poster suggests.

    However, the selections do suggest a departure from more recent years where college ballplayers were selected.

    Fact is, no one really knows what the outcome will be. Scouts must use all available data at the time fo the selection and, hopefully, have the foresight to address any and all signability issues prior to the selection.

    I am encouraged from the videos I have seen and reports that I have read. I have always believed that a good organization builds from within. The current drafts do so from the ground up.