During the 2020 year, the missed time tested the Toronto Mets’ resiliency; however, the organization’s players have come out stronger on the other side.
Vice President and Director of Baseball for the Mets, Rich Leitch, spoke about the toughness of the organization, stating, “for us as a program the highlights for our shortened season really centered around the resiliency of our players and staff. Coming out of the initial lockdown we were able to safely manage our return to play and we were able to offer many outside of the box solutions to continue with our development model.”
“There was a significant time commitment from our players, families and staff, because of this our players were still able to demonstrate significant improvement under stressful situations.”
Due to the cancellation of the CPBL season and tournaments, the Mets’ focus this summer was purely on player development.
The advancement of the Mets’ pitching staff, in particular, was evident once they were able to take the field again as four of their arms participated in the CPBL All-Star Showcase in September.
Leitch noted, “our pitching coordinator Jordan Prosper has done an outstanding job with our arms from 14U-18U. Pitchers like Turner Spoljaric, Will Droll and Zak Szabo have seen real improvements over the past 12 months, and Mitch Bratt will most likely go down as the most decorated pitcher in the history of the program.”
“From an offensive standpoint with the implementation of Blast Motion technologies it has given us insight into our offensive development and we are excited to see how it translates on the field in 2021.”
When they take the field this year, they will do so with at least 12 commits on their 18u team alone. Ethan Boisvert is headed to West Virginia Wesleyan College, Mitchell Bratt to Florida State University, Will Droll to the University of Pittsburgh and Jonah Feldstein to Ithaca College. While, Alex Scoular is off to Lake Michigan College, Brando Leroux to Chipola College, Johnny Stoddard to Pratt CC, and Adam Khan to the University of British Columbia. Furthermore, Lucas Bolin is committed to Lake Michigan College, Aaron Manias and Jacob Miller to Howard College and Caden Shapiro to Princeton University.
Meanwhile, during the offseason, the Mets officially completed the renovations of their new facility; Toronto Mets Performance Centre. The Performance Centre replaces Out of the Park Sports, where they trained for eight years.
“TMPC gives us everything we need in one footprint with a more functional space, increased field area, a parents viewing area and infinitely more parking which makes it easier on our families,” said Leitch. “We are extremely excited to begin full practices at the new home of the Mets.”
For Leitch, he just hopes that the players are able to partake in a full season this year and allow their efforts to show on the field.
“In 2021 we are hoping for a complete and safe baseball season for our players. We were forced to adapt to a virtual training model for a portion of 2020 which is not ideal. We believe in our developmental model and we believe in the work ethic of our players, we feel that they’ve earned the right to compete this summer.”