It’s been a strong Spring Training for New York Mets infielder (and now outfielder) Wilmer Flores who is hitting .333/.392/.600 with three doubles and three home runs in 45 at-bats.
All three of the home runs have come against right-handed pitching for Flores. The 26-year-old fared much better against righties in 2017 when he slashed .262/.306/.459 with 11 doubles and 11 home runs in 252 plate appearances.
Mets manager Mickey Callaway believes Flores can continue to hit righties, “Wilmer deserves to play. And not just against lefties. He can hit a good righthanded pitcher too. He’s going to play.”
Of course the position where Flores could see the most time is at first base where he was already expected to play against all lefties but the struggles of Adrian Gonzalez sounds like will give him more opportunities to start there.
First base has been the best defensive position for Flores is in his career with only -1 DRS there in 341.2 innings.
Flores also made his pro debut earlier this spring in left field and Callaway says that was no gimmick, “Don’t be surprised to see him starting some games out there.”
Callway goes on to tell David Lennon of the Newsday that the Mets will map out the starts for Flores four or five days in advance by looking at the upcoming pitching matchups.
Flores finished the 2017 season hitting .271/.307/.488 with 17 doubles, career-high 18 home runs and 52 over 362 plate appearances before his year was cut short because of a freak injury.