You remember three years ago at Citi Field and right at the trade deadline. Wilmer Flores in this age of social media thought he was no longer a New York Met. He cried on the field and it was all clarified. Wilmer would stay with the Mets the only baseball organization he has known when he became their property at the age of 16.
And with another non-waiver trade deadline a few weeks away, and the Mets looking to rebuild with another lost season, the name of Wilmer Flores once again resurfaces in trade talk.
But one again, and so often since May 4, Wilmer Flores delivered. He has been the Mets most consistent hitter and getting on base along with Brandon Nimmo and Asdrubal Cabrera. Monday night during one of those rare twin bills at Citi Field, it was Flores and proving his worth.
He delivered another walk-off home run coming off the bench in the 10th inning that contributed to a 4-3 first game win, the 10th walk-off RBI of his career and fourth this season.The four walk-off home runs are tied for most in Mets history and in the company with Mike Piazza.
Then in the nightcap it was Wilmer Flores with two of the Mets hits in a game that totaled four. The Phillies have a Right-hander, Aaron Noia, who allowed a season low-tying one hit for the second time and of course the Mets offense once again was quiet in the 3-1 loss that got them a split.
But Flores with a one-out double in the ninth scored Brandon Nimmo. It was in other words, a Wilmer Flores night. He is known as king of the walk-off hit with the Mets and perhaps that player that is getting attention again before the trade deadline.
And with that double the Mets have to look at the value he is bringing to a team that can rebuild, and with Flores who also plays various positions in the infield. With the rib injury to Todd Frazier, and assuming Flores is still with the Mets, third base and more of his presence will be needed.
Manager Mickey Callaway affirmed that when the long night was over.
“We have some options,” Callaway said. The Mets option here is to keep Flores where he is. And there will be no crying this time if Wilmer Flores is part of a package that could bring back some value to the Mets. He has learned from that last experience of 2015.
Yes baseball players do cry and Flores is not concerned this time. He is hitting, 306 in the last 42 games with 12 doubles, six homers, and 22 RBI since May 4th. That’s contributing with the playing time and proving his value.
“I can’t tell you why,” he said about the walk-off heroics. “All I know is that I get in a good hitter’s count and I got the pitch I was looking for. I was being aggressive so I can hit one out of the ballpark. I’ll tell you though, this time I was thinking about a walk-off because I know that everybody was.”
\That everybody were those Mets in the dugout. They were also the 24,139 fans that settled in and saw Flores do it again. He became their cult hero in 2015 and the popularity still says that Wilmer Flores remains their hero.
But scouts who have assembled at Citi Field the past few days have come to see Zack Wheeler, Steven Matz, Asdrubal Cabrera. And they also want to give their reports about Wilmer Flores. So the rumors will persist as the Mets are expected to make drastic changes to their roster before or at that July 31 trade deadline.
So Wilmer Flores once again is the subject of speculation. He is quietly telling the Mets that he is worth the value to remain a New York Met with his presence at the plate. But this is business and as much as Flores is making noise as he did again Monday night, business is business.
However, this is a player that is worth building around. Three years since that almost trade out of New York and Wilmer Flores awaits the deadline again. But his statement was made during a doubleheader that was all about him.
Meaning one thing, and though he won’t say it, Wilmer Flores is home in New York with the New York Mets.
Comment Rich Mancuso: [email protected] Twitter@Ring786 Facebook.com/Rich Mancuso Tune in You-Tube Live and watch Sports With Rich All Bases Covered.