PORT ST. LUCIE, Fla. — The largest controversy surrounding Wilson Ramos last season — Noah Syndergaard’s preference to pitch to any Mets catcher but him — should be over, Ramos said Monday.
On the first day of spring training, Ramos said he is putting the Syndergaard personal catcher saga behind him, noting that he and the righthander enjoyed much better communication toward the end of the season.
“That should help to be more on the same page this year,” Ramos said. “I learned from those little things. We got really good conversation after that case and now we got better communication, better relationship.
“To me, I never have something bad against my teammate. We learn from the bad things and we already learned from that situation, so now it’s another year, 2020, and we’re ready.”
Ramos said he will carry into this season something he started late last season: setting up with one knee on the ground, which makes it easier to receive pitches in the bottom of the strike zone and just below it, he said. That is where Syndergaard and Marcus Stroman, for example, like to pitch a lot.
“It was hard to get those pitches a little bit because I’m a big guy,” said Ramos, who is listed at 6-1 and 245 pounds. “This spring, I would like to work more with my knee on the ground. That will help me to get that low target to my guys. I hope they feel more better with that low target.”
Jeff McNeil, penciled in as the starting third baseman, said he thinks mostly sticking to one position — in the infield especially — will be good for his body, which in years past often was beat up. “You know what it takes, you know how your body feels,” he said. “We have a great training staff here to help me get through anything, so I’m looking forward to it.” . . . The Mets’ renovated Clover Park spring training facility has received positive reviews from the players in camp. The clubhouse specifically is much nicer than the old one and is almost as big as Citi Field’s. The minor-leaguers who play for advanced Class A St. Lucie won’t get to use that clubhouse, though. General manager Brodie Van Wagenen and assistant GM Allard Baird decided that team will use an auxiliary locker room — used by extra coaches during spring training — as a reminder of the level they are trying to reach.