MONTREAL -- Though New Jersey native Anthony Seratelli was manager Terry Collins' "ideal guy" to serve as the Mets' backup middle infielder, Seratelli was unable to make the team as a 31-year-old rookie. Barring a last-minute injury or trade, Omar Quintanilla will serve as the backup shortstop and second baseman.
The Mets loved Seratelli's versatility -- he can play every position other than pitcher and catcher -- and wanted him to make the team for that reason. But Seratelli hit only .213 with a .506 OPS in 21 Grapefruit League games, and he made four errors in the field. Though Quintanilla actually performed worse offensively, batting .158 with a .422 OPS, his defense was sound.
Thus the job went to Quintanilla instead of Seratelli, who came to the Mets as a Minor League free agent after seven years in the Royals organization.
"He brings a lot to that [backup] position, but what I told him is, he's got to get more offense going," Collins said. "He's the ideal guy, being a switch-hitter who can run, and his ability to play multiple positions is very important. We just wanted to get a little bit more offense."
Collins added that David Wright will serve as the emergency shortstop this season. Wright has briefly filled in at the position in the past, and routinely plays there when the Mets employ over-shifts against left-handed batters.