Mets Catchers Down, In Steps In Lobaton • Latino Sports

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Mets Catchers Down, In Steps In Lobaton

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Flushing, NY –  Two catchers down in a matter of days for the NY Mets with season ending Tommy John surgery for Travis d’Arnaud and a non-displaced hairline fracture of the left hand to Kevin Plawecki. So the acquisition of veteran Jose Lobaton and being called up to fill the void was not in the immediate plan.

Plawecki was placed on the 10-day disabled list and could return within the next three weeks as the injury, providing there are no complications, can lead to a quick recovery.

Friday night at Citi Field, and with the Mets returning home with the best record in baseball, Lobaton, signed as a minor league free agent on December 15th, got the start. He delivered early with a triple in the second inning and it was welcome to New York.

“I wasn’t expecting a triple,” he said after the Mets 6-5 win over the Milwaukee Brewers. It was the Mets ninth win in a row and improved their record to a Major League best 11-1, a franchise best start to the season for the first time in their history.

No, he wasn’t expected here this soon. And because of the circumstances, Lobaton was immediately called upon and Thursday spent the entire day travelling from Las Vegas where he began his season with the Mets Triple-A affiliate. New York also called up Tomas Nido a first round draft pick with no big league experience.

Lobaton, 33, on the other hand has eight years of experience with the Padres, Rays, and Nationals.

“Expecting to hit the ball hard,” he said. “Thought I get a double, said okay let’s go for the triple. Great win for the team.” It is not easy for a newcomer, even with this experience to acclimate as quick but Lobaton saw the immediate excitement and chemistry of this Mets team when he arrived.

“What they are doing here right now, the energy is going to be good,” he said. A prevailing comment that comes from the Mets locker room is about the energy, having fun. And that attitude of winning every game.

From the first at bat to handing starter Steven Matz, and five relievers, Lobaton noticed that energy. He also was behind the plate when Jeurys Familia got the last out in the ninth, his seventh save of the season with 1,0 scoreless of an inning.

“I didn’t know about his sinker, now I know it’s tough,” said Lobaton about Familia that has worked to perfection. And there will be more smiles if this Mets team continues to win, even with the injuries to their major catchers on the roster.

And for now also no worries with Jose Lobaton behind the plate.

About Rich Mancuso

Established sports journalist and educator. Contact Rich at [email protected]

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