Travis d’Arnaud’s first day as on the field as a Met was impressive, and he was thrilled with the enthusiasm he saw all around him.
“It’s great to be out on the field with a bunch of guys who want to play baseball and win,” d’Arnaud told the Post after yesterday’s two-hour voluntary practice session, which included hitting on the same field as David Wright. D’Arnaud arrived from California on Monday.
“Today was the first day meeting David face-to-face, but he called me before,” d’Arnaud said. “It was great today. A couple of the guys I knew. I knew John Buck with the Jays. I just want to get ready and start winning,”
Most of all d’Arnaud, who turns 24 Sunday, was happy to be back on the field with his new team. He suffered a knee injury breaking up a double play in Las Vegas that ended his season last June.
“I’m just so excited,” said d’Arnaud, who came to the Mets from the Blue Jays in the R.A. Dickey trade. “I haven’t played since last June, so I was getting antsy to get on the field and play. I’m really looking forward to spring training starting up next week.’’
He was so antsy that after arriving here, he nearly went out and purchased shorts and a workout shirt in Mets colors.
“I didn’t have anything,’’ he said. Mets’ gear was waiting for him, though, when he arrived early yesterday morning.
In January while working out at his high school field in Lakewood, Calif., d’Arnaud told The Post he was coming to spring training with the objective of winning a spot on the major league roster.
“I believe in myself, that’s pretty much it,’’ d’Arnaud said at the time. The objective remains the same now that work has begun.
The young catcher caught some bullpen sessions, shagged flies and took a few rounds in the cage. Manager Terry Collins — who kept his distance, giving d’Arnaud time to relax and fit in — will talk with d’Arnaud today. Collins closely watched d’Arnaud’s batting practice.
“He’s got some bat speed, woo!” Collins told The Post.
Last year at Triple-A Las Vegas, d’Arnaud hit .333 across 279 at-bats with 52 RBIs, 45 runs scored and 16 home runs before being injured. ESPN’s Keith Law ranks d’Arnaud the 14th best prospect in baseball, with teammate Zack Wheeler 13th.
Mets catching prospect D’Arnaud arrives at camp
New York Post | Feb 6