Infielder Wilmer Flores has won his arbitration hearing with the Mets, FanRag Sports’ Jon Heyman reports (Twitter link). Flores, who was arb-eligible for the first time this winter, will earn $2.2MM for the 2017 season; the Mets had countered with a $1.8MM figure. Flores is represented by the McNamara Baseball Group.
Flores, 25, delivered something of a breakout offensive performance for the Mets in 2016, posting a career-best 112 wRC+ while hitting .267/.319/.469 with 16 homers over 335 plate appearances. Much of that damage came from against left-handed pitching, as Flores delivered a whopping 1.093 OPS over 107 PA against southpaws. He played a valuable utility role around the Mets’ infield, seeing action at all four spots but primarily serving as a third baseman in the wake of David Wright’s health issues.
Flores’ season was cut short on September 10 when he injured his wrist in a home-plate collision with A.J. Pierzynski, and he underwent hamate bone surgery in October to correct the problems. With the minor procedure now behind him, Flores is again expected to play an important role for the Mets. He and Jose Reyes will be the primary options at third should Wright again hit the DL, and Flores’ ability to hit lefty pitching makes him a strong compliment at first base alongside the left-handed hitting Lucas Duda.
The $2.2MM figure is slightly higher than the $1.9MM that MLBTR contributor Matt Swartz projected Flores would earn. With Flores’ case now in the books, the Mets’ busy winter of arbitration dealings is now complete; New York entered the offseason with 10 players eligible for arbitration. You can follow the numbers for every arbitration-eligible player in baseball via MLBTR’s Arbitration Tracker.