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Mets only team who fail to sign pick

The Associated Press

The New York Mets failed to sign their top pick from last month’s amateur draft, Vanderbilt pitcher Kumar Rocker, by Sunday’s 5 p.m. EDT deadline, over concern about his medical scans.

New York selected Rocker with the 10th overall pick and will receive an extra selection in next year’s amateur draft, the pick after the 10th choice, because of their failure to sign the 21-year-old right-hander.

The Mets lost the $4,739,900 slot value available for draft signings that was assigned to Rocker’s pick.

“This is clearly not the outcome we had hoped for and wish Kumar nothing but success moving forward,” Mets acting general manager Zack Scott said in a statement.

Rocker was a junior and is eligible to return to Vanderbilt for his senior season.

“Kumar Rocker is healthy according to an independent medical review by multiple prominent baseball orthopedic surgeons,” his representative, Scott Boras, said in a statement. “Immediately upon conclusion of his collegiate season, he had an MRI on both his shoulder and his elbow. When compared with his 2018 MRIs, the medical experts found no significant change. Kumar requires no medical attention and will continue to pitch in the regular course as he prepares to begin his professional career.”

Rocker was the only player among the first 29 first-round picks who failed to sign.

Two players finalized agreements on the final day.

Arizona signed Jordan Lawair, a shortstop from Jesuit College Prep in Texas, for $6,713,300, and Miami signed Marlins, Kahlil Watson, a shortstop from Wake Forest High School in North Carolina, for $4,540,790.

This year’s amateur draft was cut from 40 rounds to 20 due to the coronavirus pandemic. Last year’s draft was reduced to five rounds.

The Mets spent $3,407,900 of the $4,286,400 remaining in their signing bonus pool, reaching agreements with their other nine picks in the first round. Failing to sign Rocker left $878,500 unspent.

Alsoon Sunday, Pittsburgh signed right-hander Owen Kellington, a high school pitcher from Vermont, for $600,000 after taking him 102nd.

Pirates next opponent on a roll

ATLANTA — Willy Adames hit an early homer off Charlie Morton, Brett Anderson pitched 5 2/3 strong innings, and the Milwaukee Brewers beat the Atlanta Braves 2-1 on Sunday.

The Brewers, who have a seven-game lead in the NL Central, moved 20 games over .500 for the second time this season. They improved to 34-19 away from Milwaukee and have won 13 of 17 road series this season. They host Pittsburgh tonight.

“I mean, it’s a good team,” Anderson said. “It’s a playoff-caliber team, pitching and defense are the strong suit and we’ve been scoring at a pretty good clip since the All-Star break. Still, we haven’t had everybody clicking offensively at the same time quite yet.”

Atlanta lost its ninth straight game and 12th in its last 13 when trying to reach .500. The Braves are 52-54.

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