Michael Conforto, as a first-round draft pick, always had the talent to make it to the majors, even convincing the Mets to promote him straight from Double-A. But more and more, it appears that Conforto is lucky, too.
Before Sunday's 5-1 win over the Rockies, Conforto was definitely at risk for being shipped down to Triple-A Las Vegas -- a short hop away -- to make room for Monday night's activation of David Wright. But once Logan Verrett threw eight strong innings Sunday, preserving a weary bullpen, the Mets opted instead to demote reliever Dario Alvarez, who was called up a day earlier.
Last month, Conforto already had been optioned to Vegas -- on paper -- before Kirk Nieuwenhuis abruptly had to be put on the disabled list with neck and shoulder issues.
On Saturday, Conforto appeared to be at risk again, with the Mets needing Alvarez, but Lucas Duda wound up on the DL with his recurring lower-back stiffness.
"It's crazy," Conforto said. "The way it's been happening. The fact that I'm still here, I just want to help the team win."
Despite his recent struggles, Conforto did that this weekend at Coors Field.
He homered in Friday night's 14-9 rout, then added three hits Sunday, including an eighth-inning double. Conforto, who raised his batting average to .258, also threw out Charlie Blackmon to end the sixth inning when he tried to go first to third on Nolan Arenado's two-out single.
Conforto only has to hang on for one more week to make it to Sept. 1, when rosters expand. If the Mets need bullpen help before then, Conforto is likely headed back to Vegas. But given his uncanny staying power, don't bet on it.
Hansel Robles overcame a leadoff walk to DJ LeMahieu in the ninth inning to strike out Carlos Gonzalez swinging, get Arenado to ground out and then whiff Ben Paulsen to end Sunday's 5-1 win.
In the two previous games, Terry Collins used Jeurys Familia with five-run leads, calling them Coors Field saves. But the manager never got his closer up yesterday . . . Wilmer Flores, who has a tighter grip on shortstop lately, is batting .322 (19-for-59) this month with six doubles, one homer and seven RBIs.