Mets are not ruling out Wilmer Flores for shortstop job | MLB.com

"I do not think we'd rule it out," Alderson said in a telephone interview. "Why should we? I think we have to see how Spring training plays out for him. Is there going to be a spot for him in the lineup? Is there going to be a bench player for us? Is he going to go to Las Vegas? "

Alderson noted several times to the team-supervised conditioning program Flowers attended in Michigan this winter alongside Lucas Duda, Ruben Tejada and several Mets prospects. This was the first winter of his career that Flores spent significant time focusing on his overall health, according to the GM.

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"I do not want to place too much stock on four weeks of conditioning, but this is a guy who's never really had the opportunity to develop himself physically the way players in the United States do, who has a season and then an offseason, "Alderson said. "He's never had an offseason, he's always played." This is a different type of offseason for him - one in which he's been able to invest in his career. p> "I would not say [Flowers to shortstop] is dead. I think that one of the things we want to see is how well he has done his regimen in Michigan. Before this offseason, I'm not sure I've ever had any sort of structured, regimented conditioning program. The work that they have done on speed and agility and quickness, etc., may have an impact on their ability to play certain positions - including second base and conceivably even shortstop. But that's all speculation. "

Flowers, who signed with the Mets as a 16-year-old international free agent in 2007, played shortstop exclusively over the first four years of his Minor League career. In 2012, he shifted to third base, before playing mostly second last year - yet an organizational response to third baseman David Wright signing an eight-year contract that runs through 2020.

"It was clear, if you watched him play last year and run the bases ... that [conditioning] was an area that needed to improve," Alderson said. "Let's see what happens, let's try it. And that's what we've done. We will not know the benefits of that until we get down to Spring Training. "

  • Adam Floyd