In five short months, Michael Conforto has gone from toiling on the Mets' Class A team to being mentioned in the same breath as Gary Carter.
The rookie became only the second Met to homer twice in a World Series game when he sent two balls soaring over the rightfield fence at Citi Field Saturday night in the Mets' 5-3 loss to the Royals in Game 4.
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While Carter, who was 32 in 1986, was nicknamed "The Kid,'' the 22-year-old Comforto actually is one. And while he admitted to having "conflicting feelings" about the game because the Mets ultimately lost and are one defeat from elimination, he clearly was awestruck by what he had accomplished. "Gary Carter? I wasn't told that," he said. "That's very cool. It's awesome."
What is equally amazing about Conforto's night is that it seemed to come out of nowhere. He snapped an 0-for-20 skid in Game 3 on Friday night with an RBI single.
Terry Collins ultimately stuck with him because he thought he was on the verge of making a breakthrough. "He's shown confidence in me all year since I came up," Conforto said. "That does a lot for me."
His first home run came in the third, when he drilled Chris Young's first pitch to him 10 rows deep into the Pepsi Porch. His second, though not as long, might have been more impressive because it came off lefthanded reliever Danny Duffy.
Conforto had the ball from his second homer tucked safely in his locker after the game. He said no one could find the ball from the first one.
He said he's not sure he will be able to appreciate the season he has had, and how far he's come, until the offseason.
"You kinda forget about where you came from," he said. "You have to act the part and be a big-leaguer and a veteran guy in these big games . . . Maybe when I take a step back, I'll be able to appreciate that a bit. The feeling I got with these two home runs was indescribable. You dream about those moments. It's overwhelming excitement."