New York Mets president Sandy Alderson: 'Some of our players aren't defensive geniuses'

New York Mets president Sandy Alderson says that he is emphasizing offense over defense but that Kevin Pillar and Albert Almora Jr. were brought in to help with their gloves.

"While some of our players aren't defensive geniuses, we think that the overall blend that we have is pretty good," Alderson said during an interview on the ESPN telecast of Thursday's 8-4 win over Washington in Port St. Lucie, Florida.

The Nationals stole three bases off new Mets catcher James McCann, two of those by Víctor Robles. Brandon Nimmo was picked off by Jackson Rutledge.

New York's tally of 32 errors was 10th best among the 30 teams last year.

"I totally agree with Sandy," Mets manager Luis Rojas said. "That's one of the things that we're working on in this camp. We talk about baserunning. We failed today in baserunning. We got picked off at first base on a 3-2 count. That should never happen. We gave up, I think it was, three stolen bases, even though McCann threw the ball well. So defensively we can hurt ourselves. And we've seen it happen in the past. It happened last year."

Infield coach Gary DiSarcina is working toward improvement, Rojas said, so pitchers "can trust their defense behind them to pitch to contact and be effective and be totally more economical with their pitch count. So, yes, we need it. We need it in the outfield. We need it in the infield. We need it in the catcher to control the running game. So it's one of our main focuses in camp, for sure."