Hathaway In Baseball Limbo

Not Happy With Being Flores' Backup

His absence from any of the minor league rosters was obvious. Healthy and ready to play, his omission from the organizational depth charts as the season began was even more puzzling. As it stands right now, catching prospect Aaron Hathaway is home in Vancouver, Washington - in 'limbo' - and his days in a Mets' uniform may be over.

"I'm having disagreements with the organization," Aaron Hathaway told InsidePitchMagazine.com from his Vancouver (Washington) home. "They're saying one thing and doing another. I've asked for my release to get a fairer opportunity with another organization."

Known more as a defensive specialist behind the plate than for his bat, Aaron Hathaway, a career .259 hitter with 21 doubles and just one home run in 116 games, still garnered attention from various scouts because of his defensive prowess.

A frontrunner to open up with the AA-Binghamton Mets earlier in Spring Training after hitting .311 with the St. Lucie Mets at the end of the 2005 season, Hathaway was told he was going back to the Florida State League instead, this time serving as the backup to Jesus Flores.

"They [the Mets] flat out told me I was going to be a backup from this point forward," said the disgruntled catcher. "I went from being a prospect to a backup in two days. It was surprising to all of us."

While many player development personnel around baseball would quickly point out that a backup catcher in the minor leagues could still develop into a solid backup catcher at the Major League level, the amount of playing time promised to Hathaway simply wasn't enough.

"They told me to my face that statistics weren't everything," Hathaway said of his better numbers over Jesus Flores in 2005. "They told me I'd get one game a week as Flores' backup in St. Lucie."

With the Mets not budging on giving in to Hathaway's demand, and Hathaway determined to get more playing time somewhere, the likelihood of him returning the Mets' organization is very grim.

"Now it is a situation, if I do go back [to the Mets], I've got certain responsibilities," Hathaway revealed. "I've got a wife, a mortgage, things like that. I don't want to waste my time. I'm not going to go anywhere in the game if I'm only playing one day a week."

"Do I want to waste my time over the next two or three years and come back to a bigger hole [financially]," Hathaway continued. "Now it is a matter of moving on. It is harder when it is not on your terms."

Officially still a member of the Mets' organization, the two sides see things very differently. As a result of neither side budging, Hathaway's status of 'limbo' with the Mets is teetering on the side of being done for good.

"I'm going through the Players' Association to see if they can help me work out a release from the Mets," Hathaway concluded. "It is a rough turn of events."

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