has finally been opened for Travis d'Arnaud to make his long-awaited Mets debut, probably tonight in San Diego. I suppose most of us in Metsdom would have hoped this would come at home, but circumstances, or, more appropriately, John Buck's paternity leave status, prevented it from happening until now.
That's not to say that we might not see d'Arnaud in New York before September anyway. Though d'Arnaud is, essentially, a 3-day replacement for Buck, and those 3 days end on Monday in a makeup game in Minnesota, there is no particularly good reason for d'Arnaud to return to AAA at that time. Although it is an audition and he, of course, has no MLB track record, he is one of those names we've been waiting for all season, as though the name "Travis d'Arnaud" had become sort of a buzzword for the future of the Mets, perhaps even moreso than the names "Harvey," "Wheeler" or "Syndergaard."
It may simply be because all the other major Mets prospects are pitchers, and d'Arnaud is a Catcher, and will more than likely play every day. It may be because d'Arnaud was acquired for the wildly popular R.A. Dickey and everyone hopes he'll be just as popular. But I suppose more than anything else, it's the hope for the future that his callup symbolizes. I guess it's not much different than Harvey or Wheeler making their debuts in and of itself. Perhaps it's because Harvey and Wheeler are both pitchers in an organization that seems capable of churning out solid starters by the bucketload. The rotation, as it's comprised right now, is almost entirely home-grown (Only Wheeler was acquired, everyone else started with the Mets), and going further down the list are names like Montero and Syndergaard. Offensively, the Mets are challenged, both at the top and down the system. But d'Arnaud is supposed to be one of those prospects that can hit. He's done it all the way up, and if he shows us something in this brief audition, maybe he takes over on a permanent basis now as opposed to next year.