Watching Justin Turner Live in December

I was working late last night preparing for some morning meetings today (one had to reschedule), when I noticed that I could pull up the Dominican Winter League on my computer on ESPN3.  Cool.  Even cooler, I tuned in to see Justin Turner have a good at bat.  Down in the count, he fought off a 94 mph fastball foul the other way, took another heater high and away for ball two and then ripped a two-run double into left-center  that briefly gave Escogido a five-run advantage.

However, the Gigantes del Cibao fought back, aided in part by a pop-up into shallow right field that dropped harmlessly over the head of former Met Joaquin Arias, who was playing second.  I thought it was really the right-fielder’s ball, but Arias took a funky route back anyway.

In seven games in the DWL, Turner is hitting .333/.375/.400 with two doubles, a walk and five strikeouts.  Remember, the DWL plays somewhere between AA and AAA, so we should expect him to hit.

The more surprising thing was that he lined up at third base.  He played two games at second for Norfolk when he was with the Orioles early this year and then seven games at the hot corner at third for Ken Oberkfell in Buffalo and Escogido.  All told, Turner had played 32 games at third prior to 2010, with 22 of his starts at the position in 2009.  I didn’t see him handle a whole lot of chances.  Actually, I didn’t see any.  Nonetheless, for you Justin Turner fans out there, and yes, there are a whole bunch, keep his versatility in mind too as you pump his candidacy for a roster spot in spring training.

I’ll add too that he looked to be a few pounds lighter than the headshot at right would suggest.

There are 5 comments

  1. theperfectgame

    Thanks for the update (DWL on ESPN3 on the computer, wow, that’s hardcore). The versatility is certainly nice, but I’d like to see him win the starting 2B job outright this spring.

    With all the bright, numbers-oriented (or at least numbers-aware) people now populating the Mets’ front office, I have to assume that at worst, Turner will get a long, hard look in Spring Training.

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  2. stickguy

    I was a big fan last year. Unless this guy is a complete butcher in the field, I still have no clue why he did not get called up in september, since he was already on the 40 man.

    and he absolutly destroyed LHP last season.

    Seems like a perfect platoon guy at worst for a LH hitting 2B option (gee, where would they find one of those), but at worst a great option to fill the MI/jack of all trades bench role.

  3. NateW

    Isn’t the best arguement for Turner being on the bi club to keep Tejada in AAA and no wasting away on the big league bench?

    His versatility and bat should be enough to win him a bench spot even with Castillo around. The only real candidates to make the Mets bench right now would be a catcher, Carter, Evans, Murphy or Castillo and Luis Hernandez or Turner.

    fwiw, Carter, Evans, and Jason Pridie are out of options. And Hernandez could be… probably is.

    1. theperfectgame

      I’d say that the best argument for Justin Turner being on the big club is that he’s a better option at 2B than any of the other in house candidates.

      Hernandez is indeed out of options.

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