It is no secret that the New York Mets have and will try and upgrade their shortstop position due to the fact that Ruben Tejada is just not a long-term answer. My question is why hasn’t Wilmer Flores got a longer look at the position? His defense is in question which is probably why he hasn’t secured the job, but he hasn’t had the chance to prove himself over an extended period of time.
Tejeda is clearly the better defender, but he has done next to nothing with the bat this year with a slash line of .226/.345/.277. The only reason why his OBP is so high is due to the strange fact that he is second in the National League with 11 intentional walks. This has a lot to do with Tejada batting eighth and the dreadful hitting of Mets pitchers who are not named Jacob deGrom.
Flores’ slash line isn’t much better being that it is .229/.260/.313, but that has come in 96 at-bats which has been spread out over three stints with the team this season. In Las Vegas, Flores has showed the type of hitter he is. Don’t get me wrong; it is still on the minor league level which doesn’t mean he will have that type of success here but in order to find out he needs to get the chance.
On the year in Las Vegas, Flores has a .323/.367/.568 slash line; he has hit 13 home runs and driven in 57 runs. Those numbers have to mean something. This guy cannot just sit on the bench and play once or twice a week; get the guy at-bats. The Mets have a glaring whole at shortstop, and it is still unknown what Flores is at the major league level due to the fact he hasn’t had a large sample of work.
The Mets need to let Flores prove he can play at a high level on the major league scale. Even if he is not in the long-term plans of the Mets, they should still let him go out there to try and increase his trade value. Right now the 23-year-old does not have much trade value due to the fact that he hasn’t hit a great deal in the majors, but again a lot of that has to due with inconsistent playing time.
Flores is in the lineup and playing shortstop in today’s game against the Washington Nationals. I hope this is a sign of things to come, because I have just seen enough of Tejada at shortstop. If Flores is given an extended look, I’m confident that he won’t let the Mets down. But until that happens, the Mets still won’t know what they have in Flores.