May 08, 2012; Philadelphia, PA, USA; New York Mets first baseman Ike Davis (29) kneels on second base after being caught stealing during the eighth inning against the Philadelphia Phillies at Citizens Bank Park. The Mets defeated the Phillies 7-4. Mandatory Credit: Howard Smith-US PRESSWIRE

Patience for Ike Davis is Wearing Thin


Ok, we all know the struggles that Ike Davis has had thus far in 2012. As if his triple slash doesn’t say enough (.163/.221/.304), Terry Collins was asked again on Sunday whether or not the Mets were considering sending down their first baseman to the minors to hit the reset button. The question became a hot topic again after the Marlins sent down their lone All-Star from 2011, Gabby Sanchez, after his sluggish start  (.197 BA, 1 HR), and for the first time this year, Terry Collins gave the media an inkling that a move might be on the horizon.

Collins made the following statement yesterday regarding the status of Davis:

“There is nothing etched in stone. We will never say something is not going to happen. What we’re trying to do is make sure that we wring the rag dry. That’s why, coming into this road trip, we said, ‘Here are some pretty good opportunities.’”

To me, it looks as if management is starting to lose their patience, especially when they see a streaky offense on the field, and one of the

least powerful ones in the league, with Davis penciled in to be the main supply of this power. The last thing I want is for Davis to be sent down to the minors because I believe he can figure himself out up in the Majors, but as each game passes by, he just continues to put himself deeper and deeper into a hole. Days off haven’t been helping, and I know that when I was in the middle of a bad slump, I needed to get away for a couple of days and truly focus on my swing before I was able to get myself right again. As a Major Leaguer, it’s tough to just “get away” for a couple of days, unless you are sent somewhere else, such as the minors.

There have been countless times it looked that Ike was finally back to the 2010 version we became enamored with (.264/.351/.440); in his final game against the Phillies a week and a half ago, he doubled and homered, driving in three runs. Then, he backed that up with another home run in his next game against the Marlins, raising his average to .183. However, in his last eight games, he’s collected only two hits, dropping his average back down 20 points. Collins was encouraged by the opportunity for him to see a lot of right-handed pitching during their road trips to Toronto and now Pittsburgh, allowing the chance to get in some sort of rhythm. If he’s not able to do so once the Mets are done at PNC Park, management may have no choice but to make a move.

You can’t say that Terry Collins hasn’t given Ike every opportunity to get back on track, though. He’s appeared in 39 games so far in 2012, compiling 135 at-bats; he’s cooled down on the strikeouts (39), but still ranks in the top-20 in the league, and he just hasn’t shown management consistent steps forward to give them a reason for him to stick around. Couple that with the hot streak Mike Baxter is currently enjoying, and it may make the decision that much easier. When talking to reporters, it’s clear that Ike is frustrated about answering the same questions over and over:

“I really can’t answer questions about it until it happens, or until something happens. I’m not sent down yet, so I don’t know what to tell you.”

The best way to allow him the time to just focus on his swing and not worry about what other people are saying about him is in Triple-A. The organization and fans have been trying to avoid it, but it seems impossible now. He may only need to be sent down for a week or 10 days, but if his bat doesn’t come alive during the rest of this road trip, it truly is necessary.

Tags: Davis Struggles Continue Gabby Sanchez Ike Davis Matt Musico Miami Marlins Mike Baxter New York Mets Rising Apple Terry Collins

  • http://theBrooklynTrolleyBlogger.blogspot.com/ MikeLecolant

    Those long arms of his don’t help. He has to unfold in order to swing. So I think his problem is all timing, and partly pitch recognition. As a coach, if I could separate a hitter’s head from his body, I would. Stop thinking. See pitch ~ Hit pitch.

  • Will DeBoer

    I think the choice is clear now. He looked completely helpless at the plate tonight in Pittsburgh. It’s at the point now that we expect he’s going to strike out every time. I just hope that sending him down doesn’t shatter his confidence for good rather than helping him build it up again. He goes down, there’s a chance we never see him again, but it’s a chance that has to be taken for the good of the team and Ike.

  • http://on-the-way-home.org musicom

    I agree with both of you guys; I hope that sending him down will help him reset, and it’s at the point now where he’s just thinking way too much. It only takes one swing to get back on track, but it doesn’t seem like it’s going to come right now.