Mark Vientos #27 of the Mets looks on before a game...

Mark Vientos #27 of the Mets looks on before a game against the Tampa Bay Rays at Citi Field on Wednesday, May 17, 2023. Credit: Jim McIsaac

Mets prospect Mark Vientos was getting ready for bed in his hotel room in Norfolk, Virginia, on Tuesday night when he got a call that he was getting the call. To the majors.

Vientos, whose 13 home runs in Triple-A had made him the subject of much clamoring for a call-up from Mets fans, was officially added to the big-league roster on Wednesday. He was in the lineup as the third baseman and No. 8 hitter against Tampa Bay lefthander Josh Fleming Wednesday night.

Vientos becomes the third top Mets prospect to get the call this season, joining Brett Baty and Francisco Alvarez.  

Vientos took Baty’s third-base spot on Wednesday in a new-look lineup that featured Eduardo Escobar as the No. 2 hitter and second baseman and Baty and NL batting champion Jeff McNeil on the bench.  

Mostly, that’s because Fleming is really tough on lefthanded batters. But the promotion of Vientos without a clear spot for him in the everyday lineup is an issue for manager Buck Showalter to solve.

“We'll see how it evolves,” Showalter said. “He's capable of playing first and third and DH. I don’t mean to be short, but if he plays well, hits well, we’ll see how that role evolves.”

Vientos received a nice ovation from the Citi Field crowd before his first at-bat in the second inning. He grounded into an inning-ending 6-4 forceout.

In the fifth, with the Mets trailing, 1-0, Vientos led off with a first-pitch groundout to second.

Vientos can also play the corner outfield spots. His best position is in the batter’s box, and it’s there that the Mets hope he has the most impact. But at what position? And who sits when Vientos plays?

“He's going to play tonight,” Showalter said. “We're going to see how it evolves. But it's a good question, one that I've asked myself, obviously. I just don't think going there in stone right now is real smart. We'll see how it evolves. Hope he makes a big contribution to a win tonight and gives us another good option that makes making out a lineup hard, which it was today and I hope it is tomorrow.”

Vientos, 23, was tearing up Triple-A, batting .333 with a 1.104 OPS through 38 games for Syracuse.

Vientos had to have heard the pleas for him to get the call to help the struggling Mets’ offense. But he said it wasn’t something he focused on too much.

“It was no challenge,” he said. “Just focusing on what I could control. My time down there was asking the coaches and coordinators, ‘What can I work on to get better?’ Just focusing on that and waiting on my time.”

But, Vientos said, he thought his time would come.

“I felt pretty good down there,” he said. “Pretty confident.”

This is not his first time in the majors. In 16 games last season for the Mets, Vientos hit .167 (6-for-36) with a home run and three RBIs.

“I feel like it's all the same game, just taking it day by day,” Vientos said. “Exactly what I was doing down there: Just focusing on what I can control, learning from a bunch of great players you have here. Asking questions, ask how I can get better, and doing whatever I can to help this team win games.”

Vientos said he did get a little sleep before he had to head to Citi Field on Wednesday morning.

“I slept a good amount,” he said. “I can’t say the best, but I slept a good amount.”

To make room for Vientos on the roster, the Mets optioned veteran infielder Luis Guillorme to Syracuse.


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