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2012 Mets Draft Scouting Report: RHP Matt Bowman

Princeton product Matt Bowman was the Mets' 13th-round choice, and he's a player who has received quite a few comparisons to Giants starter Tim Lincecum. This is entirely due to appearances and not stuff or performance. After all, there's a reason why Lincecum was drafted tenth overall and not in the 13th round. Both pitchers have athletic but slender frames without a lot of height to him, though I should note that Bowman (6-foot-1, 175 pounds) is not nearly as small as Lincecum is. Furthermore, Bowman has very similar mechanics: aggressive to the plate, huge leg kick, and a whip-like arm action, all things designed to maximize velocity from a smaller frame. I do worry about him breaking down, just as I did with Lincecum, but these things tend to be a tradeoff. To top it all off, Bowman even looks like Lincecum a little.

As I said, stuff-wise, Bowman isn't as impressive. He'll typically throw 88-91 but was a little quicker last summer, brushing 94, though that same velocity didn't show up this season. According to Paul DePodesta, he did hit 95 in a workout in front of Mets officials just before the draft. He'll also mix in a slider and a changeup, both of which are roughly average pitches. There is no wipeout pitch here, but he does have solid command and a good feel for the craft, effectively mixing speeds. There's also some hope that Bowman, who also plays shortstop, will continue to improve upon focusing solely on pitching.

Ivy League products are notoriously difficult to sign after their junior years, and Bowman is not expected to be any different. The value of the education is just too difficult for most players to ignore, especially since most of them are not slated to receive huge bonuses to begin with. I don't think $100,000 gets this deal done, so how much over the Mets want to go here is the big question.