Fansided
Rising Apple
New York Mets News

Mets need to see if this version of Austin Jackson is the real deal

NEW YORK, NY - AUGUST 08: Austin Jackson #16 of the New York Mets hits a double bringing home Michael Conforto #30 of the New York Mets in the second inning at Citi Field on August 8, 2018 in the Flushing neighborhood of the Queens borough of New York City. (Photo by Michael Owens/Getty Images)
NEW YORK, NY - AUGUST 08: Austin Jackson #16 of the New York Mets hits a double bringing home Michael Conforto #30 of the New York Mets in the second inning at Citi Field on August 8, 2018 in the Flushing neighborhood of the Queens borough of New York City. (Photo by Michael Owens/Getty Images)
facebooktwitterreddit

Austin Jackson is one of the hottest hitters in baseball right now. Before the season ends, the New York Mets need to know if he’s someone worth bringing back.

Since joining the New York Mets, veteran outfielder Austin Jackson has not been himself. In fact, he’s been far better than that.

Through 12 games, Jackson is batting .472/.513/.722 with a pair of home runs and 9 RBI. The sample size is small, sure. The hits, however, are frequent and big.

Two weeks is already enough time to get to know a person or a player. During my dating days, I would say if I had any doubts about a relationship with the first two weeks, it wasn’t going to work. Major League Baseball teams need to think a little broader. It’s also important they don’t rush to the alter when someone like Jackson puts up Hall of Fame numbers in his first dozen games.

Still, there’s a spark in Jackson. He was unceremoniously traded by the San Francisco Giants to the Texas Rangers in July after 59 games. The Rangers didn’t play him at all, choosing to release him instead.

More from Rising Apple

During his stint in the Bay Area, Jackson didn’t hit a single home run and managed to knock in only four more runs than he has right now with the Mets. Something has clicked with Jackson in New York.

Jackson turns 32 in February so his free agent age at the end of this season is on the higher side of average. He has been through this before. Several teams have signed him to a one-year deal for the past few offseasons. It seems no one wants to commit long-term to him. It’s understandable why.

Prior to his stellar 2017 campaign with the Cleveland Indians where he played part-time, Jackson was bouncing around from team to team a little too frequently. His batting average was often low, his strikeout totals were often high, and his speed looked diminished.

There’s a lot to dislike about Jackson’s game, but an equal amount to love and appreciate. I could say the same about my personality although I might be lying about that latter half.

It’s important the Mets know what Jackson is before this year is through. I don’t think he’s getting a starting job off of two fantastic months with a losing baseball team. Factoring in his success last year with Cleveland, there’s a good chance a team in need of a right-handed hitting outfielder with good defensive abilities views him as a worthy roster candidate.

Go figure, this is exactly the type of player the Mets need.

Jackson is similar to Juan Lagares so there’s a reason to thank him and wish him the best in his future endeavors. However, Lagares is more costly and perhaps it’s time they move on from the often too one-dimensional player.

Jackson shouldn’t play every day for the 2019 Mets. If they realize he is still a good ball player who can give them runs, I would like to see him return as the right-handed alternative behind Michael Conforto and Brandon Nimmo.

Johan Santana answers the "should they trade Jacob deGrom" question. Next

Want your voice heard? Join the Rising Apple team!

Write for us!

Two weeks is not enough time to know what Jackson is. Thankfully, we have plenty more to get a clearer view.

facebooktwitterreddit