PORT ST. LUCIE, Fla. — Todd Frazier has been studying the Mets with all the interest of a die-hard fan.
Before reporting to First Data Field on Friday, he watched spring training reports from his home in Toms River, New Jersey, and read the articles that talked about the team’s new path. Somewhere along the way, the former Yankee stopped thinking about the Mets as “them” and started thinking about the team as “we.”
“It feels good to say ‘we’,” said Frazier, who signed a two-year, $17-million deal with the Mets.. “It’s the type of feeling you’ve gotta have, you’ve gotta believe in. [Watching interviews and reading articles, I saw] what our motto is and what we’re trying to do and it’s kind of firing me up a little bit in all good ways. Hopefully, we keep getting good momentum going and after spring training getting ready for Opening Day.”
Frazier, the new third basemen, said he has spoken to David Wright but didn’t elaborate. Wright has totaled only 75 games the past three seasons, hasn’t played since May of 2016 and has undergone surgeries on his neck, shoulder and back. He still hasn’t resumed baseball activities.
Frazier hit 27 home runs with 76 RBIs last season and provides power along with Yoenis Cespedes and Jay Bruce. But Frazier, whose career batting average is only .245 hit only .213 last season. with a career-low .226 BABIP.
That, hitting coach Pat Roessler said, gives the Mets some indication that he might be able to produce even more than he has in the last few years. (His BABIP in 2016 was .225.)
“He’s been historically a .270 BABIP guy, and in the last years he’s been a little bit unlucky,” Roessler said. “I think it could be a blessing in disguise, we might see the benefits of that.”
Roessler even is open to hitting Frazier leadoff with Michael Conforto starting the season on the disabled list.
“Remember when they put Bo Jackson in leadoff spot in that All-Star Game, kind of do some damage early?” he said. “It’s a threat. Like I said, we’re going to try and get guys on base in front of the big boys. If you can lead off the game 1-0 or a walk, that’s great,”
Gonzo says back won’t hold him back
First basemen Adrian Gonzalez said that the back injury that limited him last year appears to be under control.
“I think I got a good grasp on how to treat it and how to take care of it,” Gonzalez said. “It caught me by surprise in April and I had trouble getting it right from there. This whole offseason it’s been great and I haven’t had any issues or any setbacks, so I feel really good right now and I’m ready to go.”