Dominating Grapefruit League play wasn’t enough to keep Travis d’Arnaud with the big league team, and he has been optioned to minor league camp this evening.
After batting .343 this spring against major league competition, there’s no denying that d’Arnaud is ready to call Citi Field his home. However, it looks like the Mets were not willing to lose that extra year of control in order to have d’Arnaud break camp with the team. Now the d’Arnaud watch will start, and some believe that we won’t see d’Arnaud in Queens until after June 15.
“He played very well,” Sandy Alderson said. “He met all of our expectations, which I think for the organization and Mets fans were fairly high. He did a very nice job. We’re hopeful he’ll have a long career in New York. But we’re happy with what John Buck has done. We’ve got an investment in him as well. I think our pitching staff and team overall will benefit overall from John Buck’s presence, and ultimately Travis is going to be a very good player for us.”
D’Arnaud could spend the first twenty days in the minors in order for the Mets to delay his first year of arbitration, but in order for the team to avoid d’Arnaud gaining “Super Two” status, his call up would come some time after June 15. However, an injury to Buck can change that.
“As I said, we’ve got a big investment in John Buck, too,” Alderson said when asked about “Super Two” being a motivating factor with d’Arnaud. “I know people talk about control and ‘Super Two’ and all of that. If John Buck gets hurt tomorrow, Travis d’Arnaud is the front-line catcher.”
The good news is that this will give d’Arnaud and Zack Wheeler some time to get acquainted in Las Vegas. Looks like we will have to wait a couple more months to see these two in Queens…or you can order milb.tv like I did, if you can’t wait
Also sent down to minor league camp today: Aaron Laffey, Brian Bixler, Jamie Hoffmann and Andrew Brown. Brandon Hicks was outrighted which pretty much guarantees Omar Quintanilla the backup shortstop job.