NEW YORK — Matt Davidson was overwhelmed when a Hall of Fame representative stopped by and asked for some game-used equipment to display in Cooperstown.
Batting helmet? Sure thing.
Batting gloves? Here 'ya go.
But not his bat, Davidson said. No, sir. He needs to hang onto that.
Down in the minor leagues, supplies are limited.
"The Hall of Fame wanted to take one of my bats, and I told them I'm on an unbelievable pace for breaking bats. I broke about 40 this year. It's unreal," the budding Arizona Diamondbacks slugger said. "So I don't know what it is. But I was like, I've got to have this. I mean, I've got to make the season still. And I hit a homer with it, so I better keep it. It's lucky."
Davidson hit a two-run shot Sunday that sent the United States past the World Team 4-2 in the All-Star Futures Game, baseball's annual showcase for top minor league prospects.
The opening event for three days of All-Star festivities at Citi Field, the Futures Game certainly had a New York Mets flavor in their home ballpark. Two of the team's touted pitching prospects, Noah Syndergaard and Rafael Montero, started on the mound, and each worked a scoreless inning.
"It was a glimpse into the future, not just for us, but for our fans. It's real positive," general manager Sandy Alderson said.
Both managers were former Mets favorites, too. Edgardo Alfonzo guided the World Team, and his counterpart was Mookie Wilson — who certainly took the job seriously. He brought in Philadelphia Phillies left-hander Jesse Biddle in the middle of an inning to get out of a jam.
New York outfielder Brandon Nimmo also got in the game — and moved into captain David Wright's locker for the day.
"I'm honored that I get to stand where he stands. I'm not taking his place or anything," Nimmo said. "I hope this is my field in the future."
The only other time the Mets hosted the All-Star game was in Shea Stadium's debut season of 1964. And while a scattered crowd announced at 39,188 was eager to see the promise of a better future, it turned into a big day for the Diamondbacks.
In addition to Davidson's drive, Chris Owings looked silky smooth at shortstop. On the mound, right-hander Archie Bradley worked a perfect inning, showing off his 98 mph fastball and sharp curve.
Baseball America recently rated Bradley the game's top pitching prospect. He passed up a chance to play quarterback for Oklahoma back home.
"It kind of felt like we stole the show a little bit," Bradley said.
After winning MVP honors with his family and girlfriend in the stands, Davidson found himself in the Mets clubhouse handing over his helmet and batting gloves to Brad Horn from the Hall of Fame.
It was a little surreal for a 22-year-old third baseman still eager to set foot in the majors.