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Mets and Wilmer Flores will head to salary arbitration

jfteran
Jul 31, 2015; New York City, NY, USA; New York Mets shortstop Wilmer Flores (4) rounds the bases on his walk off home run to left during the twelfth inning against the Washington Nationals at Citi Field. New York Mets won 2-1 in twelve innings. Mandatory Credit: Anthony Gruppuso-USA TODAY Sports
Jul 31, 2015; New York City, NY, USA; New York Mets shortstop Wilmer Flores (4) rounds the bases on his walk off home run to left during the twelfth inning against the Washington Nationals at Citi Field. New York Mets won 2-1 in twelve innings. Mandatory Credit: Anthony Gruppuso-USA TODAY Sports
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If you had Wilmer Flores as the only Mets player to not settle in your office pool, congratulations!

In what’s a pretty surprising move, infielder Wilmer Flores and the Mets will head to salary arbitration. The two were unable to come to an agreement during the negotiation period, and now, they’ll let a salary arbiter decide how much Flores will make next year.

According to Jon Heyman, Flores has filled at $2.2 million, while the Mets are countering with a $1.8 million offer. This is the first time the Mets will be in an arbitration hearing since 2008 when they couldn’t come to terms with LHP Oliver Perez.

Looking back at last season, Wilmer Flores’ year was actually really good. The man’s bat was almost literally on fire when he went on a tear against lefty pitching late in the season. I think we all hoped he’d be able to show that type of pop someday, but it was kind of surreal to watch.

Against southpaws, Flores hit for an absurd line of .340/.383/.710. That’s not a typo. He destroyed opposing lefties and took them deep 11 times in just 100 at-bats.

Of course, if he could just hit righties a little better, he would likely be playing all the time regardless of what positions were available. His .232/.289/.353 line against righties is just not nearly good enough. Maybe in 2017, we see the two balance out a little bit more.

As Vincent noted in his Mets Season in Review of Flores, when he plays consistently, he hits. Unfortunately, as we know there isn’t much space in the Mets infield for him if everyone is healthy and hitting the ball. So playing time will be a bit of an issue going into 2017.

Nevertheless, Flores is a player most Mets fans love and want to see succeed. I would have hated to have him get traded away in 2015, and I’m still happy he’s around now.

Next: Mets and Matt Harvey agree to new deal with incentives

With Flores filling for arbitration, the Mets have officially concluded their arbitration-eligible business, and will look towards his hearing and Spring Training camp next month. Don’t forget, we’re only 30 days from pitchers and catchers reporting to Port St. Lucie.

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