The drama started in the early afternoon, hours before the scheduled first pitch.
Reports said that the New York Mets had acquired Carlos Gomez from the Milwaukee Brewers on Wednesday night, but the team later said that was not the case, completing a weird and emotional evening for fans and players alike.
Flores, 23, has a.245/.278/.378 batting line in 198 games with the Mets the last three seasons. Flores received a standing ovation at the game, which the Padres won 7-3.
That led a Mets official to blame social media. “Our doctors thought the health risk was too great; Houston’s doctors apparently feel otherwise”, Alderson said. What possible benefit could having Wilmer Flores still in the game be providing?
Obviously, anytime you’re dealing with a pitcher who is returning from a major elbow injury, it’s a risky acquisition, but at just 25 years old, Wheeler still has significant upside for the Brewers. He was trying to win a game and had no idea why Flores was crying. Wednesday’s loss snapped a three-game winning streak and dropped New York two games back of Washington in the NL East.
Let’s leave the wondering why the trade didn’t go through for later (Brewers beat writer Tom Haudricourt reported the Brewers would only sign off on the deal if satisfied by Wheeler’s medical history after undergoing Tommy John surgery).
So, who was at fault?
In the 1992 classic A League of Their Own, Tom Hanks memorably declared, “There’s no crying in baseball”.
“Unfortunately, social media, etc., got ahead of the facts and it may have had an adverse effect on one of the players rumored to be involved”, Mets general manager Sandy Alderson said.
Alderson said he apologized to Flores for putting him in such a position but that he didn’t regret the decision not to ask Collins to pull Flores from the game.
The New York Times reports that Mets Manager Terry Collins said after the game that he knew nothing about any final trade so did not take Flores out. It never happened. Flores has been with the organization since he was 16. It sure seems that way.
But then things got really weird: After the trade had been confirmed to reporters (including by a “a high-ranking team executive” who spoke to the Times), the deal fell apart. It should serve as a lesson for anyone with a Twitter account, but it won’t.