July 31, 1997
Mets Sign Cal Pitcher
BERKELEY, Calif. - The New York Mets signed University of California sophomore right-hander Tyler Walker Tuesday and had a brief press conference at 3Com Park (Candlestick Park) prior to the Mets-San Francisco Giants game in San Francisco. Walker also got a chance to throw in the bullpen and shag fly balls with the Mets before the ballgame.
Walker, the Mets second round selection in the June 1997 Amateur Draft (58th player picked overall), signed for a bonus of about $425,000. He had entered the 1997 college season as the Major League Scouting Bureau's highest rated amateur player.
The 6-3, 235-pound Walker had a 4-4 record with a team-high four saves and a 3.40 ERA in '97. He also had 50 strikeouts in 47.7 innings pitched and finished fifth in the Pac-10 Southern Division in saves.
For his career at Cal, Walker was a 6-5 with five saves, 78 strikeouts in 85.3 innings and a 3.48 ERA in 46 games as a Golden Bear.
Walker, who began his Cal career as a catcher, was selected the Top Professional Prospect at the National Baseball Congress World Series last summer, playing for the Santa Barbara Foresters.