The No. 1 prospect in the Mets organization, shortstop Amed Rosario answered some questions for reporters on Monday at Tradition Field through the help of translator Melissa Rodriguez.
Participating in his first big-league camp with the Mets, Rosario said he was thankful to have veteran shortstop Jose Reyes take him under his wing and mentor him as he adjusts to what it’s like being here and getting used to his new surroundings.
“I’m so thankful to God first, and then I’m also thankful that I have people like Jose around,” Rosario said. “Jose doesn’t just give me advice on the field, he really tells me how to carry myself as a person off the field as well. To always make the right choices, and to do the right thing. So that’s a really great thing to have.”
Reyes has spoken highly of the young Mets prospect with whom he had a chance to play with for a few games last summer when the two spent a little time together in Double-A Binghamton. “Wow! He’s 20 years old and he looks like a veteran,” said Reyes after watching him leg out a double as part of a three-hit night.
Reyes took a wide-eyed Rosario out for dinner that night and gave the kid some sage advice. “Don’t worry about being a top prospect. Come here every day and always play hard and do your thing. Don’t worry about when you are going to be in the big leagues…Go out there and perform, hustle, and run the bases hard. Do all the little things that people are going to see.”
Rosario, now 21, is grateful for valuable mentorship Reyes provides and said he appreciates the praise, but he understands that ultimately it all comes down to his focus, his ability, and his faith. He’s committed to akways looking for ways to improve his performance across the board and he believes if he remains dedicated and true to himself it will all work out in the end.
“I like to work on everything,” Rosario said. “I just hope for the best and I want to give everything I have when I’m out there on the field. But it’s important to work on everything equally. My batting, my fielding, my reps, just all of it.”
During his daily media briefing Manager Terry Collins is looking forward to getting his future star into Grapefruit League action this weekend.
“My impression, when we started batting practice, the first pitch he saw, he hit it off the top of the batter’s eye, which was eye-catching. It looks like he’s got a good arm, good hands, so I just can’t wait to see him play.”
Here’s what one scout told Mike Puma of the New York Post that will really get the attention of most baseball fans.
“He is just so athletic. He’s an outstanding shortstop, and you know it when you see it. He’s got a little bit of Carlos Correa in him, a little bit of Francisco Lindor, a little bit of Addison Russell.”
Puma also grabbed a great quote from Reyes yesterday after he and Rosario completed their workouts.
“I think he is going to have a little bit more power than me,” Reyes said. “Last year when I played third base in Binghamton, I saw him make all these plays like everything is made too easy for him. I said, ‘Man, this guy is going to be something else in the big leagues.’ ”
Rosario is coming off a tremendous campaign that saw him bat a combined .324/.376/.462 with 24 doubles, 13 triples, five homers 71 RBI and 19 stolen bases between High-A St. Lucie and Double-A Binghamton. He was also named Defensive Player of the Year in both the Florida State League and the Eastern League.
I would expect him to begin the 2017 season at Triple-A Las Vegas where he’ll be just one step away from his major league debut. That has yet to be confirmed by the Mets as of yesterday afternoon, but we should have some clarification on that within the coming days.
Photos by Ed Delany, MMO Photographer