The Keepers - #13 - RP - Roy Merritt

13. Roy Merritt – RP – AAA – 24/yrs.

A local article written prior to the draft: Roydrick Merritt, a second team preseason All-SWAC selection, pitched a seven-inning two-hitter with six strikeouts and held UAPB to a .091 (2-for-22) batting average to lead Southern to a 6-1 victory in the first game. The hard-throwing left-hander from Houston only gave up two walks and held the Golden Lions scoreless until Jeremy Davis’ RBI double drove home Scott Donaldson in the bottom of the fifth. “I really didn’t try to overpower them today,” Merritt said. “All I wanted was to go out there and throw strikes. I wanted to hit my spots. Merritt is 6-1 with a 3.20 ERA, five complete games (all seven-inning games), one save and 48 strikeouts to 24 walks. He was the winner a year ago as SU opened the SWAC tournament with a 10-6 win over Alcorn, going five innings and allowing five runs (four earned) and seven hits. He struck out five and walked one.

In 2006, he pitched 44 innings, gave up 50 hits, and struck out 44 batters. His college teammate was Savannah’s Emery Frederick.

The Mets drafted Merritt in the 29th round of the 2007 Mets. He played the 2007 season for Kingsport, pitching in 17 relief appearances and posting highly respected stats of 1-2, 2.88, 1.12.

In 2008, Merritt pitched a combined 3-0, 2.16, in 31 appearances for Brooklyn and St. Lucie.

In September 2008, Patrick Hickey wrote on: Roy Merritt- Much like Johnson, Merritt exceeded expectations and showed remarkable poise out of the pen. That, combined with a slider, with movement that can only be compared to a Frisbee, Merritt figures to be a pitcher worth watching next season. Considering the fact that he was drafted by the Cardinals in 2005 as a center fielder, it’s amazing how far he’s come in such a short time. - Final Grade-A+

March 2009: Pat Hickey Jr. on: Roy Merritt, who is still developing his secondary pitches to compliment an excellent slider and a average fastball, is still finding out what he needs to do in order to be successful. In just a third of an inning of work, the lefty-side-armer has given up three runs and two hits.

2009 was a mixed year for Merritt. He was on the fast track out of spring training and actually stood a chance to make it to Queens on a September call-up; however, a hot start turned cooler later on in the year. AA stats: 4-5, 3.45, 1.48, 14-Sv, 56-K, 56-G, 62.2-IP.

Forecast: A lot more was expected of Merritt this past year. The Mets brass fell in love with him in spring training and everyone expected him to be a September call up. He has ++ talent and could make it there by the end of this year if he aces AAA.

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