Juan Lagares, who actually is known for his first-step quickness, recently joined Wilmer Flores, Ruben Tejada and Lucas Duda at a fitness and nutrition camp in Plymouth, Mich., that the Mets are encouraging their players to attend.
When the various young Mets arrived, Barwis would evaluate them and come up with a nutrition and workout regimen. He wanted them to work on their balance, explosiveness, strength, speed and flexibility.
He tutored them on running and cutting. Or, as he put it, “How to place your foot, angle rotation of your shoulder. Whether or not my hand clears my hip to open up my hip when I make a cut. You know, redirection. Is my toe pointed in the right direction, at the right time, to make sure my pelvis engages properly? Am I engaging the right muscles to get the most power out of my body in this situation?”
Going through a speed and agility drill last Tuesday, Duda tapped his toes through a ladder-style obstacle, cut around five cones, and then smoothly caught a football at the end. He looked like an NFL tight end, although it would help the Mets a lot more if he looked as if he belonged at first base. He has lost about 10 pounds.
“I feel like I’m more coordinated,” Duda said.