The New York Mets have had both memorable moments and tears thanks to the offensively-gifted-yet-defensively-challenged Wilmer Flores. Yet, the only way he can be all the Mets ask of him and more is if they give him a full chance to prove his worth and grow defensively.
Mets should Groom Wilmer Flores into Starting Second Baseman
With the departure of veteran second baseman Neil Walker, the Mets may be looking to better their infield. While Asdrubal Cabrera is getting up there in age, this can possibly lead to opportunities for Flores, who is capable of changing a game with one swing when inserted into a lineup.
Flores exudes the natural positive energy that the Mets have fed off of in the past. It’s not all about his on-field tears after learning of the trade that thankfully did not go through. His love and passion for both the game and this team sparked an amazing World Series run, and he is a humble, non-destructive, overall really positive presence that the Mets need to keep around.
If the only thing the Mets have to worry about is Flores’ defense, the adjustment will not be much of a headache or struggle. He has played some games all around in this mix of an infield situation the Mets have going on. With Flores potentially having a role that he can embrace and grow into, fans should expect the occasional error; however, along with the learning process should, in due time, lead to a significant defensive improvement.
Flores is not a terrible player. While fans are uneasy and claim that Flores is nothing more than a bench player, he has shown that he can win ballgames. He is young and has the potential to develop into a special piece needed to complete the puzzle. He may never win a Gold Glove, but if the Mets plan to keep him around, he deserves a chance to be put to the test and prove fans wrong about his defense. He cannot grow if he isn’t given a proper chance.
With Amed Rosario at shortstop and Dominic Smith at first, it remains a mystery how the infield will look next year. Jose Reyes and Cabrera may be veterans that can hold down the fort for a short time to stop the bleeding. The Mets need youth and need to build a solid infield that can be relied on in years to come. Don’t write Wilmer off and say he is and always will be a defensive liability. Baseball can be quite unpredictable. Former Met Ike Davis is now a pitcher who struck out the side. If Ike can make that transformation (regardless of collegiate pitching experience), Flores can make the necessary adjustments to a position that he has professional experience at.
With that being said, the fact that Wilmer Flores deserves a starting role and a chance to prove his worth is something that the Mets should see. Defensive growth is not out of the question for any athlete. He should be played to determine what he can bring to the team he loves to play for, a team that could thrive off of his energy and passion.