Wilmer Flores has been diagnosed with early onset arthritis in both knees and is done for the season. Mickey Callaway acknowledged that he is unsure what this means for Flores’s future.
The injury brings an end to a season in which Flores played in 126 games and hit .267/.319/.417 in 386 at-bats while posting a 102 wRC+ and a 0.5 fWAR for the New York Mets. He primarily started at first base but has seen his playing time at the position diminish since Jay Bruce returned from the disabled list. Since the beginning of September, Flores has hit .207 (6-for-29) with a 38 wRC+ and a .491 OPS in 11 games. He has also spent time at second base and third base for the club this year.
Flores became a fan favorite after he was almost traded in July 2015 to the Milwaukee Brewers as part of the proposed Carlos Gomez trade. His display of emotion on the field and his passion for the team ingratiated him to the Mets faithful. From there, he has become known for his late innings heroics. This past July, he broke David Wright’s club record by recording his tenth walk-off hit on a home run against the Philadelphia Phillies.
In six seasons with the Mets, Flores has a .262 average to go along with 68 home runs in 1,866 at-bats. In that time, he has posted a 99 OPS+ and a 108 wRC+. Though it’s still too early to know for sure, the injury could lead to the Mets non-tendering Flores in the offseason.