Rosario: '100 percent ready' for Mets to call

Club's top prospect plays in second career Futures Game

July 9th, 2017

MIAMI -- sauntered into Marlins Park on Sunday wearing a customized T-shirt with a cartoon image of his face. His teammate on the SiriusXM All-Star Futures Game World Team, catching prospect , joked that Rosario's beard looked as distinctive as 's hair.

In time, Rosario may become at least as well-known as deGrom, his face finding a home not just on T-shirts but New York City buses and billboards as well. The Mets' top prospect, Rosario is their most highly touted position player since at least the days of and . But as of yet, the organization has confined him to the Minors; Rosario went 0-for-2 with two strikeouts Sunday in his second career Futures Game.

He believes his time is imminent.

"I'm 100 percent ready," Rosario said through Nido, who served as his interpreter. "But it's whenever God's ready. He's got a plan for me."

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If that plan involves a bit of frustration and heartache along the way, Rosario is steeled for it. A .327 batting average with seven home runs, seven triples and an .839 OPS at Triple-A Las Vegas has not been enough for the Mets to call Rosario to the big leagues, despite uneven performances from veterans and Reyes. Defensively, scouts have little doubt that Rosario is already superior to those two. Offensively, the statistical comparison -- albeit at different professional levels -- is stark.

General manager Sandy Alderson continues to preach patience, defying the notion that Rosario might help the Mets compete for a playoff spot. Only if they fall out of the race completely, Alderson indicated, will the Mets consider a promotion.

"There are things he still needs to polish up, like any player," director of Minor League operations Ian Levin said, "and he's going to do everything in his power to try to do that."

"There's room to improve on everything -- my defense and my offense," Rosario agreed. "I work on it every day."

Part of that means relying on Reyes, one of Rosario's childhood idols as well as the player he is attempting to replace. The two Dominican Republic natives, who played together briefly last year at Double-A Binghamton, text on a weekly basis about "music" and "life."

"He just tells me to be patient," said Rosario, the No. 3 overall prospect according to "My time is going to get there. Don't focus on what can happen, just focus on the moment right there. Because when it comes, I'm going to get to enjoy it. I [should] take it one moment at a time."

Rosario has heard the stories of , who stood at a similar locker at the Futures Game just two years ago, answering questions about when he might debut. Weeks later, Conforto was in the big leagues as a starting outfielder. Now, he is an All-Star.

Hardly blind to the fact that his path may look similar, Rosario knows his promotion may be weeks away, the promise of his future nearly realized. His Futures Game experience now in the past, Rosario will play next week in the Triple-A All-Star Game, then report back to Las Vegas. And after all that?

"Whenever the team needs me," Rosario said, "I'll be ready."