Sunday, February 26, 2012
One practice field at their spring training complex replicates those exact dimensions, including before and after markers that illustrate the radical makeover.
At practice Field 7, just outside the main diamond at Digital Domain Park, there’s plenty of room in the power alleys where there’s space to drive a truck between two chain-link fences — a 16-foot high monster that kept balls in play the first three years at Citi Field, and the hitter-friendly 8-foot wall the park will have this season.
The Mets estimate 29 more homers — including both teams — would have been hit last season. So the reconfiguration figures to improve the power profile of a team that was 13th in the NL with 108 homers last year.
It’s no accident the field is adjacent to the main field, there for all to see on a daily basis. All it takes is a bit of imagination.
“I think balls that might have one-hopped the wall last year, I think it’s going to bounce off the wall or maybe even go out,” outfielder Lucas Duda said. “Obviously it’s a chain-link fence vs. a pretty solid wall, but it gives me a chance to kind of get used to the dimensions and get a head start.”
Manager Terry Collins is hopeful that the redone dimensions will do more than lead to home runs. He believes it’ll provide a mental lift for players who might have become pull-happy in the past.
“It’s going to mean a lot because David, right-center is where he made a living,” Collins said. “It’s where he became a star. I think it’s going to be back in his game again.”
Wright hit 14 homers in an injury-shortened 2011, nine of them on the road. Now, he anticipates the splits won’t be so different.
“You want to be rewarded for having good at-bats, hitting the ball hard,” Wright said. “Sometimes you do everything you can possibly do and hit a ball as good as you can, and obviously you get a little frustrated with that.
Tuesday, January 17, 2012
The project to replace the right-field line bleachers with premium stadium seating began the second week of November, and with just over six weeks before the March 5 opener, much work remains to be done.
Workers from Straticon Construction began pouring concrete into the brick walls last week, and only the wooden framework for the new seating area was in place.
The Mets and St. Lucie County officials overseeing the project say they are confident it will be ready in time.
"It's extremely tight, but every day I'm on site, the foreman tells me we are on schedule," St. Lucie County Parks Manager for the North Division, Guy Medor said Friday. "There have been no major setbacks, and without a doubt it will be complete.
Friday, March 11, 2011
by Jess Estremera
After one of the strongest earthquakes in history hits Japan followed by devastating tsunamis this morning, Mets Ryota Igarashi spoke about his concern for his family in Japan.
Igarashi spoke through a translator telling reporters that he had heard about the 8.9 magnitude earthquake at about 2:30 AM by a phone call from his translator. Since then he has been watching the coverage on CNN and Japan's live stream.
Ryota's wife and children are with him in Port St. Lucie at Mets spring training camp but the rest of his family remains in Japan. He has not spoken to them although he believes they are unharmed.
"All lines are shut down. You cannot get through, so there's no way to get in touch directly with family." Igarashi said through the interpreter. "But the likelihood that they are OK is very high based on where they live." His family lives in Chiba which is 200 miles south of the area most affected.
Whatever the case, our thoughts are with Igarashi, Japan and the effected areas of the earthquake and tsunamis.
Friday, March 04, 2011
by Jess Estremera
The Citifield playing infield has been replicated in Mets Spring training camp and the players love it.
According to the New York Times, a firm called Natural Sand Company filled the Port St. Lucie infield with loads of dark, brown clay from its mine in central Pennsylvania in February.
"It's pretty sweet," says Jose Reyes, "It's exactly like Citifield, and thats the best infield in the majors, without a doubt."
Mets coaches want players to train on the same playing surface they will play in during the regular season starting in April. The idea was proposed by Chip Hale, the Mets third base coach (and former managerial candidate.) "It seemed like a no-brainer to me," Hale said. "Why not make it as close to New York as possible?"
David Wright hopes it will help him prepare for the move to New York later this month saying "it makes it a lot easier when you go up north and it's the same surface you've been practicing on for six weeks."
Mets and the county of Port St. Lucie will split the $15,000 cost.
Thursday, February 24, 2011
Tuesday, February 22, 2011
by Jess Estremera
According to Adam Rubin of ESPN , David Wright sported his NY Knicks apparel to spring training this morning in Port St. Lucie in support of the recent trade which sent All Star Carmelo Anthony to the Knicks. Wright stated that the Knicks are "getting one of the best players in the game..I'm no basketball expert, but it just seems like there's a good buzz. The exciting thing, especially about New York, is that you get players who truly want to come play there. And those are the types of guys that the fans want."