Light-hitting Tejada delivering on defense
NEW YORK -- Ruben Tejada entered Friday's play batting .203 with a .529 OPS.
He was, in other words, on fire.
Tejada's hot streak has not come on offense but at shortstop, where he has spent much of the Mets' homestand racking up highlight-reel plays. On Monday, Tejada made a pair of diving stops, including one to start a nifty double play. Two days later, he delivered a near-perfect relay throw to nail Matt Carpenter at home plate, preventing the tying run from scoring in another Mets victory.
Tejada, who committed eight errors in just 55 games last season, does not have any since April 8 -- a span of 106 1/3 innings. Though advanced metrics paint the picture of a shortstop with relatively limited range, those numbers are generally unreliable in small samples.
"I feel really good right now on defense," Tejada said. "I've been working really hard too to get my timing for my hitting. So I want to keep doing the same for defense and keep working for my offense."
The Mets do need Tejada to begin hitting, regardless of his defensive performance. The shortstop entered Friday's play with a .309 on-base percentage and .220 slugging mark to go along with the .203 batting average, ranking near the bottom of the league in all three categories.