February 26, 2014

Wilmer Flores Will Get His Shot At Short

If you've been pining for Wilmer Flores to get a legitimate shot at the shortstop role in recent years, you're about to get your wish.  This according to a report filed by ESPN's Adam Rubin.  Citing an unnamed team official, Flores will see significant time at the position this spring as the Mets determine whether or not he can hack it.

This may be indirectly related to a possible run at Seattle's Nick Franklin, who grades out similarly to Flores from an offensive standpoint.  The Mets may figure why trade a quality prospect for Franklin, when they could have a similar option already at their disposal.  Like Franklin, who will have to answer questions about his ability to play shortstop at the big league level, Flores will have to prove he's capable to assuming the role.

Flores has long been considered too slow for short, with a sluggish first step that severely impacts his range.  Its for that reason that he was taken off the position in the minors in recent years.  Perhaps now the Mets hope Flores can cash in on his extra offseason work, where he spent two months at fitness camp in Michigan.  If Flores is going to seize the moment, his time is now.


I'm excited to see Flores get his chance, but I would advise that Mets fans not get their hopes up.  Unless his fitness transformation dramatically impacts his play in the field, Flores does seem likely to have the range to stick at shortstop.  With that said, I'm rooting for him.  Finding an in-house answer to the team's shortstop needs would free the team up to address other needs if they wish.  Flores almost certainly represents an offense upgrade from Tejada, so in in the end the question remains can he cut it defensively.

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