PORT ST. LUCIE, Fla. -- Later this week, Mickey Callaway will take the podium for his first Spring Training press conference as Mets manager. He will deliver a State of the Mets address, answering queries on the team's pitching staff and medical practices and his own managerial debut.This is all
PORT ST. LUCIE, Fla. -- Later this week, Mickey Callaway will take the podium for his first Spring Training press conference as Mets manager. He will deliver a State of the Mets address, answering queries on the team's pitching staff and medical practices and his own managerial debut.
This is all uncharted territory for Callaway, who officially begins his first Spring Training with the Mets on Monday. Although Callaway has already been in Port St. Lucie for more than a week, the lights are about to shine brighter now that pitchers and catchers have reported.
Earlier this offseason, Callaway called this "the exciting part, once you're out on the field and getting to see whatever it is you're working on that day." For Callaway, there is no shortage of things to do. In addition to acclimating new players Todd Frazier, Anthony Swarzak and others to the clubhouse, Callaway must decide which pitchers will round out his rotation and bullpen, how to configure his lineup, and even how best to deploy Tim Tebow -- he's in big league camp full time this year -- in Grapefruit League games.
All of it will take time, but at least the Mets have that in spades. For the next six weeks, Callaway will work to mesh with Noah Syndergaard, Jacob deGrom, Yoenis Cespedes and the team's other stars. He will delegate duties to his new coaches. He will try to solve whatever crises -- and there will be crises -- arise.
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Although Cespedes, David Wright and several other Mets position players have already arrived in Port St. Lucie, the rest of them are not required to report until Feb. 17. The club will have four days of full-squad workouts before its first Grapefruit League game on Feb. 23 against the Braves.
From there, it's just a quick month until the Mets' regular-season opener March 29 at Citi Field -- Callaway's official debut as manager. He's preparing for it in the usual ways.
"You just embrace every second," Callaway said. "I just kind of live in the moment, and I'm going to just be honest with everybody every day and go about my business. I love the game of baseball and thinking about it and thinking about leadership -- and a lot of coffee. I get up real early and drink tons of coffee."
Anthony DiComo has covered the Mets for MLB.com since 2007. Follow him on Twitter @AnthonyDiComo, Instagram and Facebook.