Mets third baseman Todd Frazier channeling his inner Joey Votto
By Tim Boyle
New York Mets third baseman Todd Frazier is doing something he hasn’t done much in his career. The veteran third baseman is channeling his inner Joey Votto and drawing lots of walks.
Not long ago, New York Mets third baseman Todd Frazier was a member of the Cincinnati Reds. As a power-hitting corner infielder in the same lineup as Joey Votto, Frazier didn’t need to walk much. All he had to do was swing away, hope he made contact, and watch the ball go real far.
When Frazier left the Reds, his mentality stayed the same. At the very least, this was the case during his time with the Chicago White Sox. Frazier had an atrocious .220 batting average during his season and a half in Chicago. His .311 OBP wasn’t much better in terms of star power.
A funny thing happened to Frazier when he went to the New York Yankees at the end of 2017. Out of nowhere, he channeled his inner Votto and began drawing walks. Lots of them, too.
For example, Frazier hit only .222 in 66 games with the Yankees. However, he finished his short stint in the Bronx with a .365 OBP. For a guy carrying a career .323 OBP, it was an impressive leap.
Best of all, this talent for drawing walks has carried over to the Mets.
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Through his first 21 games of the season, Frazier has drawn 18 walks. This helped give him an early .411 OBP to start his tenure with the Mets. On a team without many patient hitters, Frazier’s patience has been a blessing. Hopefully, it rubs off on them, too.
Anyone who has followed the Mets for even a moment this year knows Frazier is a leader on this squad. Right now, he’s setting an example at the plate.
The Mets rely heavily on home runs from the heart of their order. Those four-base hitters are even more damaging when players draw walks ahead of them.
A Jay Bruce bomb is nice, but even sweeter when Frazier can watch from first base because he worked the count and got a ball four.
Though Frazier is doing his best impression of his former Reds teammate, Votto doesn’t deserve any of the credit here. Frazier has matured into something special. He’s no longer one of the kids hoping to contribute. He’s now an eager veteran ready to help his team even if it means changing the way he plays the game.
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Frazier’s contributions to the Mets are difficult to measure. He’s the leader they desperately needed off the field. On the field, he’s beginning to show what he can do as well.