New York Mets: Dillon Gee Is Becoming the Ace of the Staff Out of the 21st Round

Josh BurtonContributor IIIJune 6, 2011

NEW YORK, NY - JUNE 04: Dillon Gee #35 of the New York Mets throws a pitch in the top of the first inning against the Atlanta Braves at Citi Field on June 4, 2011 in the Flushing neighborhood of the Queens borough of New York City. (Photo by Christopher Pasatieri/Getty Images)
Christopher Pasatieri/Getty Images

Dillon Gee, starting pitcher for the Mets, improved his record on this season to 6-0 and lowered his era to 3.33 with a scoreless, seven-inning outing on Saturday against the NL East rival Atlanta Braves. This broke up the terrible playing of the Mets in recent games and turned the team in the right direction. The next night, R.A. Dickey dominated the Braves to win the three-game series for the Amazin's.

Gee was basically dominant, only giving up four hits and two walks. He has turned into arguably the Mets' most consistent and reliable starter this season. He also leads the Mets in wins this year, with six, and has started four less games than the two Mets starters who haven't missed a start this year. Those pitchers would be Jon Niese, R.A. Dickey and Mike Pelfrey.

Being the de facto ace of the New York Mets is a far cry from where Dillon Gee started his professional baseball career. With the MLB draft starting tonight, Gee is another example of a low-round pick turning into a solid MLB player. In the 2007 MLB Draft, Gee waited until the 21st round to be drafted.

This has turned out to be one of the Mets draft picks in a while being that the Mets haven't had a draft pick work out in a couple of seasons.

The 21st round isn't known for producing many top baseball players, but some notable 21st-rounders are Mike Fontenot (Giants 2B), Nick Punto (Cardinals SS), J.C. Romero (Phillies RP), Mark Hendrickson (Pitcher currently out of the league—he also played in the NBA for a couple of seasons) and Andy LaRoche (Younger brother of Adam LaRoche and A's third baseman, just to name a few.

On the other hand, Gee represents what Mets fans would love to see to build up this team's beleaguered farm system. They would love to see Sandy Alderson and his contingent stock up on talented young arms and bats through the draft, which is what Alderson did with the small-market San Diego Padres before coming to New York.

The future of homegrown stars like David Wright and Jose Reyes may be murky, but Dillon Gee's is clear. He may not have top-of-the-rotation stuff, but he is a top-of-the-rotation kind of pitcher.