PORT ST. LUCIE, Fla. (CBSNewYork) – Spring training is all about optimism. But when your team is coming off a World Series appearance, excitement reaches a fever pitch.
Following a World Series appearance, the Mets have already started breaking attendance records, CBS2’s Otis Livingston reported. About 1,500 people showed up Friday, the largest first day for pitchers and catchers since the team began training in Port St. Lucie in 1988.
“Everyone comes together with high hopes,” catcher Travis d’Arnaud said. “A lot of smiles. You’re not seeing someone for three months that pretty much grew together as a family throughout the year. To see everyone here – I mean, I wake up every day with a smile.”
“It was very fun to see the guys out there and the energy level in the morning,” manager Terry Collins said. “Didn’t have much to say today except, ‘Let’s go get ’em.’”
The position players don’t have to report until next Thursday, but as usual, there are many who are already there ready to get back to work because now they have a bull’s-eye on their back.
“We did some amazing things over the course of the season – offense, defense, guys that filled in when there were injuries,” outfielder Curtis Granderson said. “We’re going to have to go ahead and continue to do those things and step up even more.”
“You get everybody’s ‘A’ game,” third baseman David Wright said. “The fans come out in full force to root against you. It’s more hostile environments on the road. Pitchers want to be the ones to shut down the National champion lineup. We’re not going to be given anything. If anything, it’s going to be a much tougher road because we’ve proven that we can be a winning team.”