Wilmer Flores, currently playing mainly shortstop for Triple-A Las Vegas, played first base Wednesday night and went 2 for 5 at the plate.
Mar 18, 2014; Port St. Lucie, FL, USA; Detroit Tigers right fielder Tyler Collins (72) breaks up the double play attempt of New York Mets shortstop Wilmer Flores (4) in spring training action at Tradition Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Brad Barr-USA TODAY Sports
Adam Rubin of ESPN surmised that Flores was likely playing first in order to limit pain to the jammed finger he suffered two days prior, but that doesn’t mean Flores playing first base for the long-term doesn’t make complete sense.
It’s been known for years – since the Mets first moved Flores from shortstop – that his future wasn’t there.
It’s been stated at Rising Apple multiple times before, but the Mets should be playing Flores at first base the majority of the time in Triple-A in order to get him acclimated.
The problem with Flores defensively at shortstop (and at second base to some extent) is his lack of range and agility – not his instincts, hands, or arm.
At third base, Flores is average, and there’s no reason to think that he wouldn’t be able to handle first base adequately as well.
With Josh Satin struggling as the right-handed portion of the first base platoon in the majors, and Wilmer Flores’ future with the Mets likely at first base or nowhere, the club should be playing him at first base more often than not.