Den Dekker Could Start Season In Vegas

By David Conde

February 22, 2014 No comments

Den Dekker - Greg Fiume Getty Images

Adam Rubin of ESPN NY writes that Terry Collins hinted at Matt den Dekker, as well as Kirk Nieuwenhuis and Andrew Brown, opening the season in Triple-A Las Vegas’ outfield, along with Cesar Puello.

The Mets, as of now have an outfield set up with Curtis Granderson in right, Chris Young in center and Eric Young, Jr in left, along with Juan Lagares and  Lucas Duda as backups, it isn’t likely that they would carry more than the needed players.

“One of the things we’re very lucky with, when you come into camp and you have the likes of the outfield we have right now, they’re so athletic. They can all run,” Collins shared with Rubin. “Matt is in that [group]. He is still very, very highly thought of — a tremendous defender, as we know. One of the things you’ve seen in his career, he gets to a level and he may have a rough time in the beginning. And the next time he goes to that same level he advances. And we’re hoping the same thing occurs now, that he now knows what’s expected at the major-league level, what kind of pitching he’s going to see, what adjustments he has to make.

Collins adds, “I think Matt den Dekker is still a huge prospect here. It gives us an ample amount of insurance.”

It’s tough when a player has tasted the major leagues and then is sent back down to the minors.  And with den Dekker,  it’s not that he couldn’t cut it in the bigs, but with the abundance of talent on the roster, it is so hard to find playing time for everyone. He will get more at bats in Vegas than he will get sitting on the bench in NY, but if you asked him where he would rather be, I am sure he would say with the big club.

It’s a long season and even if he does not break camp with the Mets, as Collins stated, den Dekker is a huge prospect that gives the team insurance. He looks to be in the teams plans, so a minor league assignment may just keep him fresh and ready for a return.

(Photo Credit: Greg Fiume/Getty Images)

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