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An Informal Sunday Chat with Francisco Lindor

We caught up with Lindor early in front of his locker before changing, "let's do this now" was his remark to my request for a quick chat - Image Credit: Latino Sports

FLUSHING, NY — I reminded Mets shortstop Francisco Lindor that the last interview I had done with him was at the beginning of the season. I knew how he had been hounded after every game when he was going through his major slump and did not want to be part of that same circus always asking the same questions. Throughout his ups and downs we knew how he and many players are constantly asked for countless number of interviews. We in Latino Sports respect that and like to give players their space. We only approach a player for either a comment on major game issues or an interview on something that no other news source is asking. He laughed, as a sign of appreciation.

I asked him about his ups and down this season and how he had overcome the downs in the earlier part of the season. I told him how he reminded me of NY Jets Quarterback, Aaron Rogers who was heartbroken after all the hype of his return with the Jets and how he got injured on his first game, but his response to the press was, “Don’t count me out.” I told him how he reminded me of that quote, “Don’t count me out.” He said, how he has been blessed to have good health which in his opinion is the most important thing. He explained how he understood that was part of the game, how you have your highs and your lows and it’s just a question of working through them to achieve your goals.

Francisco Lindor, recipient of 2016 AL LatinoMVP Award – Image Credit: Bill Menzel/Latino Sports

I asked him about his good achievements outside of the game, by having his second daughter. His eyes and smile widened as he spoke of his daughters. I told him how we have that in common as I too have two daughters and how they have been special in my life dealing with the outside pressures. I asked him if his daughters help reduce any stress when he gets home. He said the first thing he does when he gets home is spend some time with his wife and immediately after, spend as much of his time as possible with both his daughters. “I try and spend quality time at home with them, make a lot of eye contact as they need that at their age.”

Francisco Lindor, his wife Katia and their daughter Kalina, during a back-to-school backpack drive this past August – Image Credit: NY Mets

His reaction when speaking of his wife and children makes you understand that Lindor is truly grounded as his family is his priority.

I told him how I knew how proud he is of his Puerto Rican Heritage and asked if he is passing that down to his daughters? I also asked if he was teaching them to be bi-lingual? Again, he smiled and answered with pride, “My oldest is very bilingual.” I asked him if he visits Puerto Rico, and does he own property there? He said that he does not own property, that his in-laws do in the town of Aguadilla where he visits three, four times during the off season. He smiled and added “that is one of the advantages of living in Orlando, it’s very close to Puerto Rico.”

The Clemente nominee award that Francisco Lindor received for his contributions to the community – Image Credit: Latino Sports

I congratulated Lindor and asked him about being selected as the 2023 Roberto Clemente Mets nominee for the Roberto Clemente Award. Lindor explained how proud he was of being a nominee to what he believed was one of the most prestigious awards in baseball. I reminded him that he had already received another of the most prestigious awards, the LatinoMVP award and that he was the only player that received his in his homeland, Puerto Rico. He smiled and acknowledged that important event.

Lindor’s 2016 LatinoMVP award was this James Fiorentino water color painting – Image Credit: Latino Sports

We spoke about his contributions to the community like the one he held to give free backpacks full of school supplies. He explained how important it was to do that. “There are many children that do not have school supplies when the school season starts. We know that many families must struggle to buy supplies so giving back that way was important.” I agreed with him and told him we in Latino Sports have done the same in the South Bronx, the poorest urban congressional district which is a very Latino community. I invited him to visit the Bronx next season and do something there. He said, “We can look at that next season.”

2016 AL LatinoMVP Francisco Lindor rounds first base on Roberto Clemente Day (September 15th) and represents the great one with #21 on his uniform – Image Credit: Maz Adams/Latino Sports

We also spoke about his adapting to New York from Cleveland. He stated how much he likes and appreciates the city. He said he lives in the upper East Side and likes his neighborhood which has everything near and parks for his daughters. I suggested several places that he and his family would enjoy, especially his kids. He appreciated the suggestions. I thanked him for taking the time to talk to me this early Sunday morning.

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