The promotion — or lack thereof — of shortstop prospect Amed Rosario has been an underlying and unintended distraction throughout the season for the Mets. They have said he’ll be here when they think he’s ready. But that has not quelled speculation as to the reasons.
On Saturday, a report on northjersey.com cited a person familiar with management’s thinking as saying Rosario has not been called up because of an unsettled clubhouse over what the person termed Asdrubal Cabrera’s continued unhappiness about being shifted from shortstop to second base.
On Sunday, team sources, speaking to Newsday, disputed the notion that Cabrera’s presence in the clubhouse is the primary reason that Rosario has not been promoted, with one labeling such an assertion as a half truth. Instead, lingering concerns remain from some corners of the organization regarding Rosario’s plate discipline, an area that could use improvement with more at-bats at Triple-A Las Vegas. That desire for more seasoning, the source said, outweighs the potential fallout from having the prospect around a potentially disgruntled Cabrera.
Terry Collins said of the report: “That’s the first time I’ve heard something like that. I’ve said all along I think our clubhouse has very, very good veteran players in it. That has not been a discussion . . . We really haven’t talked much about Rosario. That’s going to be [GM Sandy Alderson’s] call. That’s kinda news to me . . . I’ve not heard one thing [from Cabrera] about being discouraged about not playing shortstop.’’
Last month, Cabrera asked to be traded or have his option picked up for 2018 when the Mets moved him to second. He rescinded that request a short time later after settling into the position.
Cabrera, who hit a two-run homer Sunday, said he has no lingering issues about being removed from short. “No, I play second right now, that’s my position,’’ he said. “I forgot everything about shortstop. I’m fine, I play second base. That’s my position . . . That [unhappiness] happened a couple of weeks ago.’’
Cabrera said he hopes to return next season. “Absolutely, this is a great team,’’ he said. “We got a really good group of guys. I would like to come back. I played second before in Cleveland and in Washington. I feel really comfortable over there, too.’’
Jose Reyes, who has become the starting shortstop, communicates regularly with Rosario. “I understand him in some way,’’ he said of the impatience Rosario displayed in a since- deleted tweet that said, “On my knees and I just want to propose to Queens — NY that is.’’
“He’s down there working hard every day. When he gets an opportunity, he’ll be here. I told him you’re going to be here sooner than later.”
Reyes said of the tweet: “I talked to him about that. I think he’s got somebody who runs his media account. He was very down about that. I told him, ‘You have to be careful what you put on social media because this is New York.’ ”
If Rosario is up, it almost certainly would affect Reyes. “It’s OK,’’ he said. “I’m not a prospect no more. Coming into spring training, I [wasn’t] even supposed to be playing if [David] Wright was healthy. I should be utility guy, so for me, take it one day at a time, continue to go out there, do my job wherever Terry told me to play, I’m going to do it.’’
With Marc Carig