Ernest Dove - LIVE From Tradition Field in Port St. Lucie. Thoughts, Pics, Analysis of Mets

Jerry Blevins, Steven Matz and Matt Harvey

Hey hey hey look who made it out to Port St. Lucie

   Yup, I made the drive to get my first glimpse of the 2016 New York Mets.  Position players are technically not supposed to arrive by today but many/all of them were here.  I had the pleasure of.....well......roaming around the back fields at Tradition Field to check out all the action and see everyone get in a quick workout.

Why didn't anyone tell me just how skinny Blevins is?

Those catchers sure do stick together, don't they?

I wouldn't have enough time in this post to describe the above picture of Terry Collins and Wally Backman (yes, Stephen, THAT Wally). I just want to say how incredible it was to watch this go down no only in this pic, but when Terry pretty much gathered the entire roster of guys who participated in the workouts to individually meet this young kid later on during the morning.

Probably the ONLY time Terry wasn't smiling ear to ear.  He was awesome to see up close and personal, interacting well with all of us fans and basically just being 'one of the guys' yapping to each other on the ball field.

Bastardo just looks like a strong dude, don't he?

Dilson Herrera fielding grounders at camp.


Wait, What? Is that a Rafael Montero sighing?

Thomas......Tom.....buddy.....I present to you......Mr. Muno

Thor was in a hurry to hit the cage.  Good thing he remembered his helmet and Ham....Bat

In case anyone was wondering, Matt Reynolds was fielding grounders at shortstop today and not helping out in the outfield during batting practice that I was aware of.

Josh Smoker is a pretty husky guy, huh?

Only makes sense for THIS to be the last pic to use on this post

  The workouts started about 9:30am-ish and ended around 12:30pm-ish.  The pitchers and catchers came out first and do their workouts.  And yes, as pictured above in this article, Mr. Montero is in the building. 

  It goes without saying that one particular to notice with the Mets pitching staff.....Ok besides the obvious, is that they are very athletic. I enjoyed watching to guys go through the motions and drills, covering first base, fielding grounders off the mound, and showing the overall athletics. 
Some things of note:

Mets have a few good men manning shortstop

Look, I won't over analyze the situation, especially during PRACTICE (in Allen Iverson voice), but I would like to say that Ruben Tejada looks like....well, a very solid Ruben Tejada out there (welcome back Ruben by the way). Ruben and his glove looked as fast as ever, still effortlessly fielding grounders, short hops Etc. and making it look easy.

Speaking of quick hands and great scoop, Mr. Cabrera looked pretty natural to me over there at short.  We can over analyze and get worried about range later, but the bottom line is that he sure looks sure handed to me in the field.

Matt Reynolds, again, was there at shortstop, fielding grounders and going through the motions. He also looks to have a pretty solid stroke at the plate, where many of his swings/hits sent the ball to center and opposite field

I keep forgetting how strong Juan Lagares is

Juan Lagares, even on a cold, windy and cloudy day, can torpedo a ball over the wall in batting practice.  I agree that he does look to be in great shape, he obviously only played the outfield to catch batting practice but he looks as effortless out there as he's always been, and again.......dude has power in his bat.


 He seriously destroys baseballs for a living. Whenever he made solid contact on the ball during BP, it went over the fence. During the BP he mostly just pulled the crap out of the ball.

Speaking of destroying baseballs, hello Mr. Conforto

  After taking a few seconds away from watching the field David Wright was on, in walked over the other field just in time to watch Michael Conforto hit straight moon shots over the right field wall.  One literally hit a truck that was out there. This is nothing new for me to see, because I saw him hit like this naturally back in Spring 2015 and in St Lucie again in the minor leagues.  It has nothing to do with who's pitching behind the meshing on the mound, the point is that, and has always been, that Conforto knows how to utilize his great bat speed and ability to consistently make solid contact on the baseball.  Let's not be shocked if he hits 25 homers this year.

David and Grandy go the other way.................

  I just thought it was cool/interesting/fun to watch Wright and Grandy pretty much use BP to hit the ball wherever they want.  It was incredible watching David, even for a glimpse, hit those lasers, opposite field, with crazy movement. I also noticed Grandy making efforts to practice hitting balls mostly to center and left field today.

  One quick note on one of my favorite minor leaguers......

  Sooooooo I saw Dom Smith......he looked.......slimmer :)

  Some final quick tidbits

  Terry Collins had announced in the morning that deGrom was not at camp today, but was with his wife, so nobody needs to freak out over injuries, etc.  I think it's already been reported anyway today that he will back throwing tomorrow.

  Yoenis Cespedes, from what I learned today, had already met that young fan in the picture above in this post, back in Miami at the hospital last year.  Yoenis also has a ridiculous new hot race car looking automobile that he drove to practice today.  Oh, and I continue to see his friendship with Lagares, along with spending time working out next to Dilson Herrera. 

  I'm sure it obviously goes without saying, but David Wright was the first player to greet the young kid in the wheelchair on the field for one of their tributes to seeing him up close.  David, along with Granderson, where the ones who stayed after practice to sign autographs (yes, they did a good job of signing for KIDS and trying to avoid the grown men with glossy pictures, baseball cards and memorabilia)

  Frank Viola sounds like he'd be fun at parties.................

  Eric Campbell was out there, and took all his fielding practice/drills next to David at 3B

  Mighty Thor actually moaned and groaned a little to himself during his batting practice off a tee...OFF A TEE, because he didn't seem happy about not making hard enough contact......Can we just all admit we love this guy and that he needs to be a Met lifer?

  Zack Wheeler was out there today doing the exercises.  Nothing interesting to report other than being happy he's out there and will throwing upcoming.

  Mets camp invite player Ty Kelly, wearing number 55, was taking his fielding drills at 2B.

  Gsellman has an awesome beard.

  I obviously learned that Zack Thornton is still on the team and at camp.  Yay Ike Davis trade thought that made me know exactly who he is.

  BOTH of the Wilpon's were at camp today, along with J.P. Ricciardi and Sandy Alderson

All in all I enjoyed my little experience, for the first time, attending a workout of the Mets in St. Lucie.  This team is ready for a big year.  So much talent everywhere you look.  Even guys like Gsellman and Seth Lugo are here in camp, and will probably go on to have solid years in Vegas.  Montero is around.  DAVID IS OUT THERE, and Yo is being YO, doing YO things even in camp.  The atmosphere continues to be relaxed and chill in Mets universe. 

 I will be back at tradition field on March 6th for a spring training game.  Please be on the lookout for a post and pics after that game ;)


Mack Ade said...

Thanks for the post E Dove... wish I was with you.

Joe D. said...

Hey, nice job Ernest. Better than anything I read by the crew with the $250K Spring Training budget. :-O Bonus points for mentioning the heart transplant kid, it was a nice moment. More here than all the beat writers put together today. Great job!

Thomas Brennan said...

A 5 STAR UPDATE, ERNEST! You Put us all to shame!

Muno is clearly in mid-season form BTW. ONE picture is worth a 1000 ground balls.

Ernest Dove said...

Thank you guys for the kind words. Its why I love writing for Macks Mets.
I can't wait to drive back on march 6th, and also see maybe up to 2 sr Lucie mets games and one Mets Marlins game to produce a few more LIVE action thoughts ;)

Thomas Brennan said...

Next time, get a ride in Cespedes' Batmobile, Ernest!

Mack Ade said...

wait until you see what he's driving tomorrow to camp

TP said...

Great recap. I enjoyed it thoroughly. Thanks for the efforts.

Metsiac said...

Nice job, Ernest! If Blevens is that skinny and he sat on Jake's shoulders, would the combo outweigh Bart? If not, how about Sandoval? ��

Mack's Mets © 2012