Former Missouri pitchers Michael Plassmeyer and Bryce Montes De Oca were each taken Tuesday during Day 2 of the 2018 MLB Draft.
Although, their journey to the big leagues are anything but alike.
The Seattle Mariners selected Plassmeyer in the second round, while the New York Mets used their ninth round pick on Montes De Oca.
Heading into the 2018 season, all eyes focused on Montes De Oca, a projected first-round pick, not Plassmeyer.
Scouts have been all-in on Montes De Oca since before his time at Missouri. The No. 1 recruit in the state of Kansas had scouts salivating over his high-90’s fastball with substantial movement, which is complemented by his sharp breaking ball.
That continued into his career at Missouri, and his 6-foot-7, 261 pound frame suggests the right-hander has the capability of turning into a 100+ mile-per-hour flame-thrower with the proper coaching.
All this was enough for scouts to overlook his history of injuries and a shaky command of the strike zone.
The latter plagued Montes De Oca down the stretch in SEC play, as he posted a 5.87 ERA and 1.57 WHIP over his final seven starts. However, hitters struggled when he attacked the zone, hitting a mere .171.
His inability to command pitches derailed his draft stock and ultimately, Montes De Oca saw himself fall to the ninth round. If he can figure out his control, look for Montes De Oca as a solid bullpen or late-rotation arm.
Plassmeyer, on the other hand, surprised as a fourth-round pick. He was the 145th ranked LHP in the country out of high school, and couldn’t even touch 80 miles-per-hour with his fastball. However, contrary to Montes De Oca, scouts loved his pinpoint accuracy.
Through some time in the weight room and coaching, Plassmeyer added significant velocity to his fastball, perfected his off-speed pitches and continued to command the strike zone masterfully.
He was an inning-eater (91.1 IP) that went 5-4 with a 3.05 ERA and a 1.13 WHIP. He was also the first Missouri left-hander since 1999 to strike out 100 batters with 103 on the year.
Plassmeyer’s breakout year caught the eyes of the Seattle Mariners and they expect him to be a part of their starting rotation in the future.
All in all, the Mets and Mariners both got two quality, high-ceiling arms from Columbia to bolster their pitching staffs.