New York Mets were right to be concerned with Kumar Rocker

Jun 25, 2021; Omaha, Nebraska, USA; Vanderbilt Commodores starting pitcher Kumar Rocker (80) pitches in the second inning against the NC State Wolfpack at TD Ameritrade Park. Mandatory Credit: Steven Branscombe-USA TODAY Sports
Jun 25, 2021; Omaha, Nebraska, USA; Vanderbilt Commodores starting pitcher Kumar Rocker (80) pitches in the second inning against the NC State Wolfpack at TD Ameritrade Park. Mandatory Credit: Steven Branscombe-USA TODAY Sports /
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The Kumar Rocker situation was a mess by any team’s standards. The New York Mets had selected him with the tenth pick in the 2021 MLB Draft, building their entire draft strategy around the selection. They had planned to hand him a $6 million signing bonus, an amount far above the slot for that pick.

Instead, the Mets never made an offer to Rocker. He had not participated in the pre-draft MRI program, something that when paired with his velocity fluctuations in 2021, caused him to slide down the draft. The Mets ended up with concerns about his arm when they examined his medicals, leaving Rocker eligible for the upcoming draft.

New York Mets had reason for concern with Kumar Rocker

Of course, Rocker’s agent, Scott Boras, proclaimed there was nothing wrong with his client. The Mets were wrong, Rocker was fine, and when he returned in 2022 he would prove that to be the case. Except…Rocker ended up undergoing what Boras is terming a “minor scope” on his right arm in September.

It should not be a surprise that Boras has not exactly been forthcoming with any medical information. A similar situation played out with Michael Conforto’s free agency, where he was perfectly healthy. Then he had a minor injury but he would be fine soon. Except he needed some time for rest. In the end, he had surgery and might be ready to play in September, but will not be able to be used in the outfield until next year.

Rocker is doing his part to alleviate concerns about his medicals with his performance. He has been dominant for the Tri-City ValleyCats, allowing just four runs, three earned, on 11 hits and four walks in his 20 innings while striking out 32 batters. He is rocketing up the draft board again, going from someone that was likely to be selected in the second round to potentially landing in the middle of the first.

Next. Mets treading water with rotation. dark

Kumar Rocker had “a minor scope” on his right arm in September. Maybe the New York Mets were right about his health after all.