Minicamp Q&A with Alhaji Turay

Mets outfielder Alhaji Turay, ranked No. 15 on <I>Inside Pitch</I>'s Top Prospects list, checked in this week with InsidePitchMagazine.com to discuss his progression and offseason work ethic.

You had a strong year at St. Lucie last year. How confident do you feel about a promotion to Binghamton?

I feel pretty good. I've been working out hard, so hopefully I'll have a good spring training and end up there.

What were your workouts over the winter like?

I just followed the program we were given by the Mets, so it was a lot of running and stuff. I started working with Tony Gwynn and I'm going to try and drive the ball a little more this year, and stop striking out so much.

Gwynn was a great contact hitter. What kinds of things can he teach you?

He's an up the middle and slash it the other way kind of guy, and with my size I'm not sure that's for me. I'm just trying to be a little more patient and cut back on my strikeouts.

Does being here in St. Lucie feel any different than it did last year?

It's pretty much about the same. I try to come into spring training [weighing] about 220, you know, and I'm a little heavy. I'm going to come in and lose some weight, but I feel good and I feel strong.

What do you think your strengths are as a player?

Probably my hitting. I have a decent arm and need to try and work on my defense a little bit, and try to keep it consistent with my total game. Defense is a weaker part of my game.

What player would you compare yourself to in the major leagues?

I like Gary Sheffield a lot. He's got the bat speed and I like that.

Out of the guys you've played with, who do you feel has the highest upside?

Probably Lastings [Milledge] right now, man. He's a young cat out here and he's ballin'. He's got a lot of tools and he's fun to watch. Pitching, probably [Matt] Lindstrom, he's a power pitcher.

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