24 Feb

firmly in the mix

There are more heralded players in the New York Mets’ minor league camp in Port St. Lucie, Fla., but Jake Mangum is commanding his share of attention. “(N)obody is going to outwork him,” Mets director of player development Kevin Howard recently told the New York Post. “He’s got a lot of natural ability.” Mangum, 25, the former Mississippi State and Jackson Prep star, had a breakout 2021 season, using a rebuilt swing to bat .285 with nine homers and 47 RBIs (plus 14 steals) at the High-A and Double-A levels. He is also an excellent defensive outfielder. Howard suggested Mangum may have been underestimated by the folks who do the prospect rankings. The switch-hitter, coming off a tremendous career at State, had a sluggish start to his pro career, batting .247 with no homers in 2019 after being drafted in the fourth round. Last season appears to have been a sea change. Mangum told the Post he is excited about having another ex-MSU star now in charge of the Mets’ big league team. “Buck Showalter is a legend,” Mangum said. “His name just speaks for itself.” P.S. Disappointing to see that John Rhys Plumlee, the ex-Oak Grove and Ole Miss two-sport star, won’t be allowed to play baseball at Central Florida this season. The NCAA denied a waiver asking that the recent transfer be immediately eligible for the spring sport. Plumlee, a highly regarded prep player, batted .224 in 60 games over a couple of seasons with the Ole Miss team.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published.

%d bloggers like this: