SAN FRANCISCO (AP) Activated from the disabled list and inserted into the New York Mets’ starting lineup at second base rather than shortstop, Asdrubal Cabrera said he wants to be traded.
The 31-year-old, a two-time All-Star and a veteran of 11 big league seasons, had not started at second since Sept. 28, 2014. The Mets started Jose Reyes at shortstop against San Francisco on Friday night and Wilmer Flores at third.
”I am not happy about it,” Cabrera said after meeting with manager Terry Collins and general manager Sandy Alderson. ”I got to do my job, no matter what position, try to help my team, my teammates. I have to help them, help my team. I am just playing for my guys, my players, my teammates, I am going to do my 100 percent.”
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Cabrera agreed ahead of the 2016 season to a two-year contract with $8.25 million annual salaries and an $8.25 million club option for 2018 with a $2 million buyout. He said he would withdraw his trade request if the Mets exercise the option.
New York entered a series against San Francisco with seven losses in eight games. Cabrera had not played since June 12 because of a sprained left thumb and said he wasn’t given time to prepare for the move to second base while he was on an injury rehabilitation assignment at Class A St. Lucie.
”I was surprised,” he said. ”They should have told me I could have played over there. … For double plays you have to work on that.”
Collins declined to discuss specifics of his meeting with Cabrera.
”We had a conversation and certainly I’m not here to embarrass anyone, I’m not here to do that in my wildest imagination,” Collins said. ”There was a discussion and I made a decision. So he’s going to play second base tonight. In my opinion, I think that gives us the best chance to win the game.”
Collins grew impatient with persistent questions, at one point snapping at a reporter who hadn’t finished a question.
”I don’t how to explain this anymore, OK? This is done. He’s going to play second base tonight,” Collins said. ”We need to go out and play good. We need to have him play good. I think he will. I think he’s a pro. I think he’s a great pro. I know he’s not happy. I get it. I think this gives our team the best chance. He’s a pro, he will go out and do the absolute best he can, and that’s all I ask for.”
Alderson said he understood Cabrera’s concerns but deferred to his manager’s judgment.
”I think Cabby understands what Terry’s thinking was,” Alderson said. ”Whether he totally agrees with it, I’m not sure, but he’s playing second base tonight and I expect he’ll play some second base going forward.”
Alderson said trading Cabrera would be difficult, even if the Mets wanted to.
”As a practical matter that’s easier said than done,” Alderson said. ”Even if I were so inclined I don’t know that that’s something that he really wishes.”
Alderson attributed Cabrera’s frustration in part to the Mets’ slump.
”I would be very surprised if issues of this sort didn’t arise after the last 10 days, two weeks,” Alderson said.
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