Daniel Murphy stepping up, being a vocal leader

Last weekend, MetsBlog’s Michael Baron wrote about his experience in the Citi Field photo-box next to the team’s dugout, watching and listening to Daniel Murphy during the team’s third win of the season on April 7.

“Murphy is a very vocal person,” Baron explained. “He also genuinely believes in this team’s ability to win and make the postseason, and that’s important for the chemistry of this group no matter what happens this year. But in watching him and listening to him in-game, he comes across as a future leader of this team.”

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Matthew Cerrone: He is loud. I got chills listening to him clap and fire up his team before their first Grapefruit League game in early March. It was a Spring Training game, and he was acting like it was Game 7 of the World Series. But, it also struck me odd that he (not David Wright or Johan Santana) was behaving this way. Not that there is anything wrong with it. I love it. It was just odd to think of Murphy being a leader. The thing is, this is his fourth season on the Mets. He made his debut in 2008.  He’s actually one of the longest tenured players on the team. So, why not step up?

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Frank Catalanotto: When the young guys on the team see this type of leadership coming from the 27-year-old Murphy, as opposed to only the older veterans, it will help them relax and perform better. Players like Kirk Nieuwenhuis and Lucas Duda will learn from him the right way to be good teammate in the big leagues, and they’ll be reminded to cheer on and encourage their teammates from the bench. Having been around Murph, I know that he is a very positive person and very passionate about the game. He hates to lose. I think he can help change the atmosphere from a losing one to a winning one. He has been around for a little while now and should be getting comfortable speaking up and asserting himself as a leader. Of course he has to be careful not to think that it is HIS team. There are some veterans, like David Wright and Johan Santana, who have not only been around a lot longer, but who also have been a lot more successful in this game. So, as long as he allows Wright and Santana to run the team, and he doesn’t lose their respect, he will continue to be a positive presence for the Mets.

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Frank Catalanotto is a special contributor to MetsBlog.com. He played 14 seasons in the big leagues and will be offering insight from a player’s perspective.

To learn more about his new book, Heart & Hustle, click here.