With the 25th overall pick in the first round of the 2017 MLB Draft, the Washington Nationals selected left-handed pitcher Seth Romero out of the University of Houston, ignoring the concerns about his off-field issues which led to him being dismissed from the team this season.
Romero posted a 3.51 ERA, 20 walks, 85 Ks, and a .256 BAA in 10 games (seven starts) and 48 2⁄3 IP this season.
When he spoke to reporters this past Friday, Nats’ GM Mike Rizzo talked about how he saw this year’s draft class, as he and his front office staff prepared to wrap up all the work they did for at least the last twelve months, and likely longer in some cases, to prepare for tonight.
“I think it’s a deep crop this year,” Rizzo said. “We feel it’s a very pitching orientated draft. College bats are kind of at a minimum, so if you want one of those you have to reach up and get it. We see a big velocity draft with a lot of pitchers both college and high school split equally.
“Some quality left-handed pitching prospects, which would be something that would be attractive to a lot of teams, but we see pitching as the surplus in the draft, and it’s a deep draft this year.”
With their top pick, the Nationals went with one of the left-handers Rizzo was talking about in spite of the concerns expressed by scouts.
Their next pick is the 65th overall pick in the second round of tonight’s draft. It’s likely to take place at around 11:15-11:30, so check back for the Nationals’ final selection of Day 1 of the 2017 MLB Draft.