WASHINGTON -- Juan Lagares is in the starting lineup for a second straight day Sunday, after not starting four of the previous five games. Asked what Lagares had to do to become an everyday player, Terry Collins went on the offensive regarding the line of questioning.
New York Mets
"He has been an everyday player. He got into a little bit of a funk," Collins said before the series finale against the Washington Nationals. "You know, it's not like I sat him for seven days. I sat him for two days, for cripes sake. We get a little carried away here. Somebody gets a day off and it's like the sky is falling in. It's not. He's the center fielder.
"He had a big day yesterday (homer, three RBIs, homer-saving catch). I hope he has a big day today. It's not going to be easy. Jordan Zimmermann is real good. If he has a rough day today, you know what, you tip your hat and get after it tomorrow.
"In my opinion, this is what the market is here. If I give Grandy a day off, he's 'benched.' If I give C.Y. a day off, he's 'benched.' If I give Juan a day off, he's 'benched.' That's not really the case. I know you've got to sell newspapers, so do what you've got to say. But when I come in here every day and figure out who has got to be in the lineup, somebody can't play. And today somebody is not going to play (Chris Young). I don't get too bent out of shape about it, because I know in the long run, after the next 120 games, they're all going to [have] play[ed]."