April 15, 2011; Atlanta, GA, USA; New York Mets first baseman Ike Davis (29) hits a three-run home run in the sixth inning against the Atlanta Braves at Turner Field. Mandatory Credit: Daniel Shirey-US PRESSWIRE

Ike Davis Finds Success On The Road

The Mets may have finished 3-3 on their most recent road trip, but despite some disappointment, there were still some positives.  First, finishing .500 on a road trip against two, tough division rivals is nothing to sneeze at, even though the Mets seemed poised to go at least 4-2.  However, maybe the most significant development of the trip was Ike Davis busting out of his slump.

Maybe busting out is too strong, but he certainly performed better over the past six games than he did over the first six.  On the season, Ike is still batting an anemic .156/.224/.356, but there has certainly been improvement.  Here are how his numbers from the homestand compare to the recent road trip:

Homestand: 1-20, 2 BB, 9 K, 0 HR, 0 RBI
Road Trip: 6-25, 2 BB, 4 K, 3 HR, 6 RBI

Six hits in twenty-five at bats isn’t spectacular, but it is an improvement over the one-for-twenty.  Davis also struck out less and drilled his first three homers of the year.  With David Wright tearing the cover off the ball, Ike will need to continue demonstrating his power to offer Wright some protection.

Furthermore, Davis finally proved his ability to hit breaking balls.  Out of the six hits, four of them came off breaking stuff (two sliders and two curves), including the home run off Tommy Hanson, while the other two were off a cutter and a four-seam fastball.  Coming into yesterday’s game, Davis has been thrown a disproportionately large percentage of curve balls this season (22.7%), so it was nice to see him make the adjustment and take Hanson deep.  In addition, two of the hits were off lefty Cole Hamels, including one of the homers.

Davis is an important part of the Mets offensive for obvious reasons.  He possesses great power and, despite his early season strikeouts, good patience, posting 12.0% and 11.4% walk rates in 2010 and 2011, respectively.  In order to be successful in the cleanup spot, he’s going to have to hit breaking pitches and lefties, two things he accomplished in Philly and Atlanta.  Hopefully he can build on his recent success when the Mets return home tomorrow and become the hitter everyone wants him to be.

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