Fred Wilpon and Terry Collins share a chuckle early in camp.PORT ST. LUCIE, Fla. -- Owner Fred Wilpon watched Monday’s Mets-Marlins game from a box at Tradition Field alongside commissioner Rob Manfred. After his team’s 13-2 loss, Wilpon then spent roughly 20 minutes in Terry Collins’ office, delaying the manager’s press conference.
“He just wanted to talk about the club, which he loves to do,” Collins said. “He loves to talk baseball. But he’s not mad at all.”
Collins said the two discussed areas of concern with the team, including the high number of walks (now 36 in 61 innings) as well as unimpressive lefty relief.
“He likes to come in and just run through the roster -- talk about, ‘Hey, what are you looking at right now?’” Collins said. “He’s got great passion. He wants to win so bad. … I said, ‘Listen, you’re going to like what’s going to come out of here.’
“I mapped out the next four days of who’s playing and who’s not and days off. ... And he asked me about a couple of spots that have been a concern. I said, ‘Yeah, they’re still a concern. We’re going to bear down on those areas.’ But I said, ‘For the most part, you’ve got to like what our starting pitching can do. And [Jeurys] Familia is throwing good, [Vic] Black is throwing good. So there’s some positives. We’ve just got to stop walking people, especially in spring-training games.’”
Wilpon also vowed to be around much more this spring training.
“He expects it to be a much better team. There’s no doubt about that,” Collins said. “He told me two weeks ago, ‘Look, I’m going to be here a lot -- a lot,’ where, in the past, he’d come in and he’d be gone for a week or 10 days.”