Wilmer Flores forever endeared himself to Mets fans as he cried in the field after finding out he had been traded last season. That trade never went through and Flores has remained in New York, contributing to their World Series run last season and starting 75 games spread out over the 4 infield positions this season. He’s putting up career-bests in just about every statistical category this season and over the weekend he changed his walk-up song to The Rembrandts’ “I’ll Be There For You.”
Here it is, in all its glory: Wilmer Flores waling up to the “Friends” theme song pic.twitter.com/SCJfs88OeH
— Kenny Ducey (@KennyDucey) September 5, 2016
“I don’t know. I just can’t stop watching it,” he said. “I don’t know — on the road, when I’m home, every day — I don’t want to watch anything else. I don’t know why. There’s something about that show.”
Flores’ love of Friends is news to the public and a generally amusing quirk, but his connection with the show goes back nearly a decade to when Flores was playing single-A in Savannah, Georgia and the show was one of the things that helped him learn English. Via Newsday:
“You have to learn,” he said. “If you’re smart enough and you really want to, you will . . . I really wanted to understand what they were saying when the coaches were talking.”
Flores took to watching the local news with a dictionary in his hand. In the clubhouse, he read whatever he got his hands on. But his favorite lessons came through “Friends,” which he stumbled upon on television one day in Savannah.
“It’s still my favorite show,” Flores said. “I don’t know why I started, I really don’t. I watched it once and I liked it.”
Now 25, Flores acts as a cultural translator for his Latin American teammates.