Jordany Valdespin spent his winter playing the outfield in the Dominican Republic. Now the Mets want to see him concentrate more on second base.
“If I can play both places it’s better for me, a better chance to stay on the team,” Valdespin said yesterday upon reporting to spring training.
Justin Turner and Brandon Hicks are the primary backup infielders in camp, meaning Valdespin would likely have to supplant one of the two to make the Opening Day roster.
Valdespin was a force off the bench last season — he hit five home runs as a pinch-hitter — but said he’s not concentrating on power.
“That’s not my game,” he said. “My game is to steal bases, helping my team. That’s my plan for this year.”
Manager Terry Collins indicated Valdespin can handle the outfield, but is more valuable as a backup infielder. The Mets also want to see him take strides offensively. Valdespin hit .241 with eight homers and 26 RBIs in 191 at-bats last season.
“We’ve got to get him a little more disciplined at the plate to handle some of the off-speed stuff that they started giving him a steady diet of later in the season,” Collins said. “You know he can do it.”
Second sense for Valdespin
New York Post | Feb 17