NEW YORK -- Growing up in Freeport, on Long Island, Justin Dunn attended his fair share of Mets games at Shea Stadium and Citi Field. So although Dunn's heroes played baseball across town, he's ecstatic to be on his way to Queens.Dunn, a right-hander from Boston College, signed with the
NEW YORK -- Growing up in Freeport, on Long Island, Justin Dunn attended his fair share of Mets games at Shea Stadium and Citi Field. So although Dunn's heroes played baseball across town, he's ecstatic to be on his way to Queens.
Dunn, a right-hander from Boston College, signed with the Mets on Tuesday after they selected him 19th overall in the Draft on June 9. Though he admitted to being a lifelong Yankees fan who idolized Derek Jeter and Mariano Rivera as a kid, Dunn expressed excitement and gratitude for being able to begin his professional career with the Mets' organization.
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"Just to have the opportunity to be able to put [the jersey] on and hopefully wear it one day and it call it my own ... it's awesome," said Dunn, who signed for full-slot value of $2,378,800, according to MLB.com's Jim Callis.
The Mets also came to terms with third-round pick Blake Tiberi, a third baseman at Louisville. Both will report to Brooklyn of the New York-Penn League.
Dunn and Tiberi faced each other in college this season, and Dunn complimented Tiberi's ability to make contact and called him a "a tough out."
When asked if he had, in fact, gotten his new teammate out, Dunn was quickly cut off by Tiberi.
"Twice," Tiberi said to laughter.
The third baseman had plenty of success otherwise, though, hitting .340 with 10 homers and 51 RBIs en route to getting named to the 2016 Louisville Regional All-Tournament Team.
Dunn's accomplishments might be more impressive, though. As a junior this year, the 20-year-old compiled a 4-2 record with a 2.06 ERA in 18 games -- eight of which were starts. He recorded 72 strikeouts against 18 walks.
Dunn saved one of his best performances for the end of his collegiate career, tossing his first complete game May 21 against No. 22 Georgia Tech to help Boston College reach its first ACC championship in the final game of the regular season.
A few weeks later, the Mets selected Dunn in the first round. He didn't have much time to celebrate, though; the Eagles had a game against the University of Miami the next day in the NCAA Super Regionals.
So Dunn returned to his hotel room and turned off the lights, content with the knowledge that he'd soon have the chance to play for a team he grew up watching.
Joshua Needelman is a reporter for MLB.com based in New York.