Mets to give Brett Baty playing time at second base with Triple-A

Brett Baty will get work at second base at Triple-A Syracuse, but manager Carlos Mendoza said the Mets still view him as a third baseman.

Baty, back with the big league club temporarily as the 27th man on the roster for the London Series games against the Philadelphia Phillies, told reporters on Friday that he was doing pregame work at second base to add more versatility to his game.

Mendoza said this started when Baty was still with the Mets and they were not carrying a backup middle infielder after Joey Wendle was DFA’d in May.

“He was getting reps at second base, shortstop and he was our emergency guy here,” the manager said. “We thought with him going down to Triple-A, it was important to continue to get those reps before games and hopefully maybe a game or two.

“But he’s still a third baseman. We’re very, very pleased with where he’s at in his progression defensively.”

The manager added that the impetus behind this was more to make sure Baty didn’t have his first “game or inning or two [at second base come] at the big leagues, maybe we do that in Triple-A just in case something happens if needed here at some point.”

On the possibility of getting some time at second, Baty said, “I think it’s cool. I love defensive versatility, I’ve always loved it."

"I played a lot of different positions in high school and I love moving around the field, it’s cool,” he continued. “It’s just like a different game from other points of view so any way I can help the team."

Baty began the season at third base before struggling for consistency at the plate and making way for Mark Vientos, who has seized the opportunity slashing .333/.392/.621 for a 1.013 OPS with four doubles and five home runs in his first 66 at-bats of the campaign.

Over 49 games at the big league level, Baty slashed .225/.304/.325 with a .628 OPS with four homers and three doubles in his first 169 at-bats.

He does have two homers over his first 10 at-bats at Triple-A Syracuse.