By Ed Coleman
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Mets fans are going to like Michael Cuddyer. Now, obviously, he has to play more than the 49 games he was limited to last year because of injury. And he has to produce, as well. But if he does — and both Cuddyer and the Mets believe he will — Mets fans will end up liking the team’s lone major free-agent acquisition a lot.

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There’s simply a lot to like about Cuddyer. He’s affable, engaging and welcoming — all attributes that fit his persona. The 35-year-old native Virginian with the childhood link to David Wright explained why he chose the Mets and New York.

The Rockies came to Citi Field last September to play the Mets. Cuddyer was already well aware of what the Mets were about, but that series ultimately convinced him that this would be a good place to be.

There were a lot of teams in baseball that could have used a veteran bat like Cuddyer, teams probably a lot closer to a championship than one that just logged its sixth straight losing season. So why the Mets as opposed to somewhere else? It’s kind of a full-circle effect for Cuddyer.

There are a lot of good young pitching staffs in the majors. The Mets can look in their own division and see the Washington Nationals. So Cuddyer was asked why he likes the Mets’ young pitchers so much.

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As noted, this is a guy who went to the postseason six times in nine years with the Twins, and he strongly believes that the Mets are built for the postseason — if they can get there.

Cuddyer goes from Coors Field to Citi Field, and there are always going to be suspicions or doubts about hitters who have the benefit of playing half their games in mile-high Denver. But Cuddyer long ago realized that keeping the same approach each at-bat, home or away, was the key to success for him.

Cuddyer is well-respected throughout the game, and a natural leader. You spend just a couple of minutes with him, and it’s easy to see why.

It might be an easier grind with a guy like him in the lineup every day.

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C U soon
Eddie C.