Flores: 'I definitely can play' shortstop

March, 11, 2014
Mar 11
5:27
PM ET
JUPITER, Fla. -- Wilmer Flores’ self-analysis of his first start at shortstop since the 2011 season?

“It’s been a long time, but I felt great,” Flores said Tuesday, after playing a full game at the position, in his first start at shortstop since 2011. “I felt great moving to my right side, left side. And it was fun. ... There’s nothing new. It’s just a different angle from second base. I just have to play a little bit more.”

Flores fumbled a first-inning grounder exchanging it to his throwing hand, helping to deprive the Mets of a double-play chance. He otherwise had an uneventful afternoon at shortstop.

“He did OK,” Terry Collins said. “He’s a real bright guy. He knows what’s going. And so the first groundball, the double-play ball, he just tried to rush and got himself in a bad position and the ball popped out of his glove.”

Collins said Flores (2-for-3, walk Tuesday) will get “more” opportunities to play shortstop during spring training. Still, the priority is to get Ruben Tejada ready for the season. Tejada is due to start the next two Grapefruit League games at shortstop, according to Collins.

Collins said he did not know entirely when Flores next would play shortstop.

“You guys are asking me what’s going to happen in four days, and I don’t know what’s going to happen at 9 o’clock tonight,” the manager said.

Asked whether he thinks he will get a legitimate shortstop chance, Flores said: “I definitely can play. I can’t control that. What I can control is just to go out there and give 100 percent.”
Adam Rubin has covered the Mets since 2003. He's a graduate of Mepham High School on Long Island and the Wharton School of the University of Pennsylvania. He joined ESPNNewYork after spending 10 years at the New York Daily News.
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WINS LEADER
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WINS ERA SO IP
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OTHER LEADERS
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HRL. Duda 15
RBIL. Duda 50
RD. Murphy 57
OPSL. Duda .841
ERAJ. Niese 3.13
SOZ. Wheeler 112