Gavin Cecchini Deserves a Shot Now More Than Ever

As the Mets’ 2017 campaign comes to an end, fans are left wondering what the future has in store.

What does next year’s infield look like? Will Asdrúbal Cabrera be with the Mets come Spring Training?

The Mets plucked many veterans from their roster this season, namely Jay Bruce, Neil Walker, and Curtis Granderson, but did not deal Cabrera, despite asking to be traded in June.

Cabrera, who has had a change of heart, now hopes the Mets pick up the $8.5 million option for 2018 on his contract.

“It’s good for them because they got traded to teams that win,” Cabrera said earlier this week about his old teammates. “Everybody wants to be in the playoffs. I am really happy for them, and the Mets are still my team.”

However, as the Mets have brought up a lot of young, talented guys, many people question whether or not Cabrera will be starting in the infield for the Mets next season. With Amed Rosario and Dominic Smith already playing regularly, will Terry Collins give more playing time to 23-year-old Gavin Cecchini?

Cecchini was drafted by the Mets as their No. 1 pick back in 2012. He has had few chances to prove himself since initially making his major league debut last September, but has showed flashes of his potential.

For his first career home run, Cecchini homered off Dodgers ace Clayton Kershaw earlier this year.

“[There’s] a little frustration,” said Cecchini, who has cut down on his errors this year, from 34 to 13. “I can hit — I’ve always hit — and I’ve proven that at every single level.

“Of course I would love to have [an] opportunity. I think anyone would. This game is all about opportunity and you just got to have one to be able to show what you can do.”

Cecchini can play shortstop or second base, but would likely see the most time at second with Rosario at shortstop and Reyes or Flores at third.

In game one of the Mets’ doubleheader on Saturday, Cecchini started at second, and went 0-for-4 with two strike outs. In his 14 games played, he is batting .231 with nine hits and two runs over 39 plate appearances.

Although these statistics are nothing to get too excited about, Cecchini is a young and able player, who needs to get more at-bats to show what he can do. Cecchini’s numbers in the Pacific Coast League proved to be underwhelming this season compared to 2016, where Cecchini hit .325 with eight home runs and 55 RBI.

“We got to get him going offensively,” Mets manager Terry Collins said.”That’s the one thing about him, was everybody thought he would hit, and he always has hit, and this has probably been as rough a year as he’s had in the minor leagues.”

Collins needs to see if he can in fact hit, but since he’s been recalled has had few opportunities. With the season not meaning anything at this point, it is of utmost importance to get the rookies in games against higher-level competitors.

Even Dominic Smith has struggled since being called up by the Mets, hitting an unimpressive .187 in 22 games, with just 14 hits and 16 strike outs in 75 plate appearances, but has the next month to get his feet wet.

With the season being virtually over for the Mets, and the future of Cabrera up in the air, it is vital for Collins to give Cecchini, a young, powerful hitter, a chance to show off his talent.

“The guy has bat potential,” Collins said. “I still think he’s got a chance to be an everyday player.”