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Who Is Christian Scott?

The most highly touted Mets rookie pitcher in years makes his major league debut tonight. A couple of years ago, he was only mentioned on the deepest of lists of Mets minor leaguers. So, who is this guy and how did we get here?

In round 5 of the 2021 draft, with the 142nd overall pick, the Mets chose pitcher Christian Scott, from the University of Florida. Chances are you don’t remember where you were when that information was announced. As a Gator, Scott had a 12-5 record, with a 3.71 ERA and 121 Ks in 121 innings. While those are respectable numbers, they’re not the kind of stats that make fans anxious to see the player gets called up to the majors. Yet, here we are, on the day that Scott is going to make his major league debut, and fans are indeed salivating.

Christian Scott was born on June 15, 1999, and grew up in Coconut Creek, Florida, a suburb of Fort Lauderdale. He attended Calvary Christian High School in Fort Lauderdale, where he received numerous accolades while leading his team to the Class 4A State Championship in his senior year, 2018. For his high school career, Scott had a 1.64 ERA and struck out 223 batters in 183 innings. He was not taken in the 2018 draft, so he continued on to the University of Florida. While in college, Scott found much more success as a reliever than as a starter. While he pitched in 55 games at U of F, he only started 5 games: 4 as a freshman, and 1 as a junior. The Mets saw enough potential in the 6’-4” righty at that time to determine he was worth taking with their 5th round pick in the 2021 draft.

When Scott got to the Mets, he was essentially a two-pitch pitcher: a hard slider, and a reliable sinker. This was enough to get him into professional ball. It might have been enough to get him a cup of coffee in the Mets bullpen. It would not have been enough to get him a role in the Mets rotation and the hype that has come along with it. Instead, Scott worked with his coaches to develop a few more pitches. He has altered his arm slot to throw from ¾. He now throws a 4-seam fastball that can reach 98 MPH with some movement, a sweeper (because everyone’s doing it), a curveball, and is working on a split-changeup.

The Mets have certainly taken note of his development. In 2022, his first full minor league season, Scott had rather pedestrian results: a 4.45 ERA in 18 games (9 starts) for Single-A St. Lucie, and Single-A+ Brooklyn. Last season was his breakthrough year, with a 2.28 ERA over 6 starts for Brooklyn, before moving up to Double-A Binghamton, where he started 12 games, with a 2.47 ERA, 77 strikeouts and only 8 walks in 62 innings, and he held opponents to a .198 batting average. This was enough to earn him a spring training invite this for this past March.

For the Mets in this year’s spring training exhibition games, Scott made 2 appearances for a total of 5 innings, He gave up 3 hits, 2 runs, with 8 strikeouts and only 1 walk in those outings. By the time the team was heading up north for Opening Day, Christian Scott had done enough to pique the interest of fans, so much so that they’d be following his results in Triple-A Syracuse. For his part, Scott made it worth their while.

In 5 starts for the Syracuse Mets this year, Christian Scott has a 3-0 record, with a 3.20 ERA and 36 strikeouts in 25.1 innings, with just 6 walks. He has a miniscule WHIP of 0.77, with opponents batting a measly .136 against him. With the Mets busy early season schedule, combined with injuries to Kodai Senga and Tylor Megill, as well as Adrian Houser’s ineffectiveness, it was only a matter of time until they called up Christian Scott. Certainly, his overall results have been promising. Still, it’s his ability to avoid the bases on balls that might make him standout from the other Mets pitchers. After Friday night’s loss to the Rays, the Mets have given up the most walks in MLB this year, 142 in 289 innings pitched. To showcase the impact of these walks, the Mets have given up the third fewest hits in the majors so far this season, yet sit in the middle of total runs allowed. In other words, they’re walking batters, and those batters are scoring. For a team that’s been hovering around .500, this is an obvious opportunity for improvement. A pitched like Scott could be an important first step.

While the excitement for Christian Scott is warranted, it’s important to note that he is far from a finished product. More than half of the 12 hits he’s given up so far this season have been for home runs. Of the 7 home runs he’s allowed, 4 of them were on his fastball. As he gets to the majors, he’s going to have to have better command, or the batters will expose his apparent kryptonite.

Christian Scott will get his chance in the majors. On Friday, the Mets announced that they were moving Houser to a bullpen role to give him a chance to fix whatever issues he’s been dealing with so far this year. While they’re likely hoping that role is temporary, it will at least give Scott a multi-start audition.

After their 2023 trade deadline moves, the Mets farm system took some big steps in moving up in the rankings. The biggest knock against them was a lack of high-ceiling pitching prospects. Tonight, Christian Scott will take his first step towards proving those prognosticators wrong. At the very least, the Mets are hoping that Scott’s debut leaves them hungry for more.

Shai Kushner
Shai Kushnerhttps://mlbreport.com/
Shai Kushner, is a seasoned sports journalist and versatile professional deeply embedded in the world of baseball. Since 2014, Shai has been a trusted voice covering the New York Mets for BaseballDigest.com and GothamBaseball.com. Before his journalism career, he served as a video engineer for the Mets Baseball Operations department.


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