Adam Rubin shared a bit of insight this morning when he wrote that Terry Collins understands that given the limitations of Ruben Tejada, the team could use a backup shortstop with some offensive capability. Collins has wondered aloud if Wilmer Flores could serve in that role.
However, Rubin believes it is more than likely that Anthony Seratelli gets that nod over Flores or Omar Quintanilla, and I agree with him.
It already appears that this Spring Training edict by Collins to get Wilmer Flores a lot of time at shortstop was nothing more than a mirage or perhaps a ploy to get the Stephen Drew camp to believe the Mets were moving on without him as one MMO reader pointed out last night.
Another issue is why in the world would Flores be considered for a bench role at the age of 22? What organization would even consider something like that for one of their top offensive prospects? Hopefully, not ours.
Enter Seratelli whose seems to be in the right place at the right time…
As MMO’s John Bernhardt pointed out last week, Seratelli has several assets the Mets like. He’s a switch hitter with the versatility that is a valued commodity in a utility player.
In trying to do everything possible to catch on with a team, he has equipped himself to play every infield position as well as both corner outfield spots.
Also, he’s right in line with the front office on-base philosophy as his .276/.372/.418 slash in over 3,200 minor league plate appearances would attest.
“I’m very proud of my on-base-percentage. I feel it gets overlooked a lot,” Seratelli told Ken Davidoff last week. “But, its been brought up quite a bit here, which I’m happy about. I know that the Mets are high on that. I hope that makes me help the team.”
Last season it was Scott Rice who charmed New York baseball fans with a grit an determination that saw him finally make his major league debut after pitching for 14 years in the minor leagues. Rice’s rises to Flushing drew howls from the skeptics, but the lanky lefty won over most Met fans with his impressive outputs out of the bullpen.
Rice’s story line differs from Seratelli. Rice entered professional baseball as a highly regarded first round draft pick in 1999 but injuries and bad luck slowed his progress. At no point in his baseball career has Seratelli drawn the raves and attention that Scott Rice once enjoyed. It’s the iron will, the stubborn perseverance, and the refusal to give up on a dream that links the two determined Mets.
It’s another interesting story line to follow this Spring from Port St. Lucie. But as far as Flores being relegated to the bench? Two thumbs down on that. Give it to Seratelli and bring Flores up when you create an everyday job for him.
(Photo: NY Post, Anthony J. Causi)