TODAY'S PAPER
34° Good Afternoon
34° Good Afternoon
SportsBaseballMets

Phil Evans plays catcher for Zack Wheeler

Having worked Wheeler’s simulated inning, utilityman is adding catcher to list of positions.

Mets infielder Phil Evans runs after a fly

Mets infielder Phil Evans runs after a fly ball during today's spring opening game against the Atlanta Braves on Feb. 23, 2018 in Port St. Lucie, FL. Photo Credit: Newsday / Alejandra Villa

WEST PALM BEACH, Fla. — Zack Wheeler’s simulated inning Monday wasn’t as notable as the player behind the plate. It was Phil Evans, who is putting the “super’’ in super-utility by adding catching to a repertoire that already includes the ability to handle every other position on the field. And now he apparently is thinking like a catcher, too, after being asked how it went with Wheeler.

“I blocked one,” Evans said proudly.

Evans, the Mets’ DH in a 2-0 loss to the Astros, went 2-for-2 and is hitting .300 (12-for-40) with three doubles and two homers in 18 Grapefruit League games.

Learning the position of catcher on the fly is not something that usually is done at this level, but the Mets didn’t approach Evans about doing it until 2 1⁄2 weeks before pitchers and catchers reported.

Evans has been working daily with catching instructor Glen Sherlock and played the position in three simulated games. He’s been told the Mets plan to get him into a Grapefruit League game but doesn’t know when.

“I’m taking advantage of every opportunity I’ve been given,” he said. “I’m pretty happy with it.”

Yo lets bat do talking

Yoenis Cespedes returned to the lineup Monday for the first time since getting a cortisone shot in his sore right wrist last week and went 1-for-3, a single. He also played six innings in leftfield but did not have any chances.

As for how the wrist responded, Cespedes issued a statement through a Mets spokesman rather than speak with reporters after the game.

“It feels great,” Cespedes said, as relayed by Mets media relations official Ethan Wilson. “Everything’s fine.”

Extra bases

The Mets will play Triple-A Las Vegas next Monday at 1 p.m. at First Data Field. Tickets are $5, with the proceeds to benefit the American Cancer Society’s Relay for Life Event April 14. Fans will receive a voucher good for one ticket to St. Lucie’s Florida State League home opener April 5 against Bradenton.

Comments

We're revamping our Comments section. Learn more and share your input.

New York Sports