NEW YORK (CBSNewYork) — Ruben Tejada could be in the New York Mets’ doghouse after yet again showing up to spring training out of shape, according to the New York Post.
The team is underwhelmed and “frustrated” by Tejada’s fitness despite his participation in an eight-week conditioning program this offseason, the Post reported. A source told the paper that the shortstop “looks pretty much the same.”
And because of that, the Mets are still keeping tabs on free agent Stephen Drew, the Post reported.
Tejada, who reported to Port St. Lucie overweight in 2013, said last week he feels “really good” heading into the season. Manager Terry Collins even went on the record, saying the work the 24-year-old put in over the winter was paying off.
“He looks good,” Collins said. “You can tell he’s really worked hard and trimmed down. I asked him how much faster he was. He said, ‘I’ll show you.’ And I said, ‘OK, good.’ ”
But Mets brass on Monday “wanted to avoid” talking about Tejada, who looks “a bit slimmer” but “is not moving that much better,” the Post reported.
Tejada, once considered the heir apparent to Jose Reyes, hit .202 with 12 doubles and 10 RBIs in 2013. His season, which included a lengthy demotion, ended when he fractured his leg on Sept. 18.
Mets general manager Sandy Alderson said before the recall that working with Tejada was “like pulling teeth.”
“It’s extra batting practice, extra this, extra that — it doesn’t happen, necessarily, unless someone else is insisting on it,” Alderson said Sept. 3 on WFAN radio. “We need to see a commitment to improvement. He’s going to have to earn it.”
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