In the third inning of last night’s loss to the Indians, third baseman Wilmer Flores grimaced in pain as he swung and threw his bat at the ball, prompting Keith Hernandez to say, “Ouch. That kid is really hurting. You can tell that ankle is still bothering him.”
Flores has been slumping badly both at the plate and in the field since injuring his ankle last month. Yesterday, in my game notes I wrote:
Well it’s great to see Wilmer Flores back in the lineup and playing third base. He has been dealing with that sore ankle issue as well as battling fatigue. Flores announced he will not be playing Winter Ball this offseason. Satin is back in the number three spot which I think suits him well, especially when there’s a lefthander on the mound. He’ll be the designated hitter, but I would have used Flores at DH to give him three extra days to strengthen that ankle. Sometimes I don’t get where Collins’ head is at.
I was hoping to see a fully healthy Flores take the field last night based on his inclusion in the lineup and at third base. However, it was plainly clear that the 22-year old prospect is clearly in pain, so why hasn”t he been shut down for the season or however long it takes to get his ankle fully healed?
It seems to me that oftentimes the Mets are just asking for trouble. You hear things from Jon Niese who said he had been pitching in pain in his last three starts before going on the DL, and you heard a similar story from Matt Harvey who was pitching with a sore forearm for two weeks. I still recall David Wright wincing in pain at second base and bent over clutching his thigh and then being left in the game only to pull his hamstring the next day and land on the DL.
Why do we always seem to ignore the red flags and warning signals?
Is it the players who demand to continue playing because of some fear of being labeled “soft” or some silly sense of machismo?
At what point does the team protect their assets regardless of what the players say?
The look on Flores’ face last night was tough to take. Much as the look on Wright’s face before he ultimately pulled up lame. Who’s calling the shots?
The list of players who have been lost for the season is shockingly long for the Mets, and the revelations that all of them had seeked out the trainer to tell them they were in pain weeks and/or months prior to being lost for the season is just as long and very alarming.
When it comes to injuries, no team goes unscathed during the grind of a 162 game season, but with the Mets they always seem to get more of them and they are always among the leaders in days served on the disabled list.
Will Wilmer Flores be the next victim?