Carroll's Cuisine: Mets Stories To Watch • Latino Sports


Carroll’s Cuisine: Mets Stories To Watch


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Queens, NY – Mets fans have reason to be both optimistic and worried at this early juncture. Yes, their team has a talented roster but there are a number of issues that temper enthusiasm with health concerns being the biggest damper.

Third baseman and team captain David Wright has played in only 75 games over the past two seasons as he has battled both neck issues and spinal stenosis. At age 34 it’s only natural to wonder how much Wright can contribute in 2017.

There are even more question marks regarding the health of starting pitchers. One-time unquestioned Mets ace Matt Harvey, Jacob deGrom, and Steven Matz all missed significant stretches of the 2016 season. Zach Wheeler, who underwent arm ligament surgery two years ago was expected to return to action after last year’s All-Star Game. The

Mets are still waiting for his return. Wheeler is in camp at Port St. Lucie but there were early reports that he still felt some pain in his throwing arm. Spring training is a time for players who had off-years to begin redeeming themselves.

The Mets had high hopes for both catcher Travis d’Arnaud and sophomore outfielder Michael Conforto. Both players struggled at the plate and it seemed as if d’Arnaud’s offensive struggles affected his work behind the plate.
Mets general manager Sandy Alderson acquired Jay Bruce from the Reds at the July 31 trade deadline to bolster the Mets’ struggling offense at the time.

The hope was that Bruce could make up for the slugging punch that was missing when Yoenis Cespedes was out of the lineup because of his nagging quadriceps injury. Unfortunately Bruce struggled his first two months in a Mets uniform. Alderson is hoping that Bruce can have a productive spring if for no other reason than to use him as a trade chip.

Then there is the matter of the team’s closer, Jeurys Familia, who was arrested last fall in Fort Lee on a domestic disturbance charge. Happily for both Familia and the Mets the Bergen County district attorney’s office declines to press charges. Nonetheless, Major League Baseball Commissioner Rob Manfred can still suspend Familia for a part of the season.

Manfred has been slow to issue his sentence and it’s now obvious that he’ll wait until after the World Baseball Classic concludes in late March. Familia will be on the roster of the Dominican Republic team.  My guess is that Manfred’s delay is good news for Familia and his Mets teammates. I surmise that if Manfred was really going to throw the book at Jeurys he would have issued his sentence already and it would have prohibited him from taking part in the WBC.

Along with the start of spring training comes the first round of baseball books of the year.

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About Lloyd Carroll

Lloyd Carroll is the Senior Columnist for the Queens Chronicle, an award-winning weekly newspaper that has served the communities of Queens since 1978. This article as well as many future articles will also appear at Queens Chronicle. In addition, Lloyd also writes for our friends over at In today’s world of online publications, we at Latino Sports understand and value the importance of collaborating with other online publications in order to showcase and create awareness of each other’s work and dedication to our respectable communities.

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