May 1, 2013; Miami, FL, USA; New York Mets center fielderJordany Valdespin
(1) celebrates after hitting a three-run home run in the sixth inning against the Miami Marlins at Marlins Park. Mandatory Credit: Steve Mitchell-USA TODAY Sports
Jordany Valdespin was finally sent to AAA Las Vegas almost two weeks ago. The Mets had seen enough of his spotty offense and had nowhere to put him in the field. After some clubhouse fireworks Valdespin eventually made it to the 51s. However, what looked like the end of JV1’s Mets career has taken a somewhat unexpected turn.
When Valdespin was optioned to AAA it could be justified by his .188 batting average. In fact, his last hit was on June 22, and that also happened to be his last time on base for the Mets. Even though he was just about the only option to backup shortstop the Mets decided to take their chances through the All Star break and wait for the return of Justin Turner.
It was not as if Valdespin did not get a chance with the Mets. It just seemed that whenever he was allowed to play regularly something beyond his play would become a factor. This season saw Jordany showboat after a home run which lead to possible intentional pitches thrown at him and questions about whether or not his teammates and manager had his back. It all seemed to come to a climax when he had a temper tantrum when told of his demotion. Simply describing his season is a mouthful.
Now that he is off the team it is easy to not want to think about him ever making another appearance for the Mets. Unfortunately for those desiring peace of mind, he is hitting .513 with 2 home runs and 19 RBI in his first 10 games with the 51s. He is listed as a center fielder on the roster but he has played second base, allowing Wilmer Flores to get more time at first base.
I do not want Valdespin anywhere near the Mets. His time has come and passed as a Major League Met. He has yet to go a full season without questions about his attitude and maturity. He does not have a strong position in the field. It is unlikely that another team will trade for him, even in a minor league swap, so he is staying with this organization for the time being. The Mets have put up with him for a long time but if he keeps hitting in AAA they may have to put up with him one last time in September.
Jordany Valdespin’s scorching start with the 51s has kept his door open just a crack. He will spend the next month trying to pry that door all the way open. It probably will not be easy but it is important to remember that he is keeping his name relevant. This time it is for the right reason, his on-field play, not antics.