New York Mets backstop Tomas Nido can put an end to any doubt about becoming Jacob deGrom’s personal catcher if he can learn to become a better hitter.
Tomas Nido is not Jacob deGrom’s personal catcher but he is clearly the man the New York Mets are going to try to use behind the plate as much as possible whenever Big Jake takes the hill. It doesn’t make much sense to keep him on the bench when deGrom pitches. Clearly, he makes the Mets’ ace a whole lot better.
Manager Mickey Callaway recently said Nido is not deGrom’s personal catcher then added how much trouble it would cause come playoff time. Obviously, the first instinct of many is to wonder which standings Callaway is looking at. Before we can talk playoffs, the Mets have to win more regular season games. I digress.
Through the early part of his MLB career which now includes just over 50 games played, the 25-year-old catcher has made it clear where his strengths and weaknesses lie. The strength is how he performs behind the plate. His weakness is how he doesn’t perform when there’s a bat in his hand.
More from Rising Apple
- NY Mets News: Marcus Stroman sees “potential fit” with the Angels
- NY Mets were too “seek” and not enough “destroy” last winter
- NY Mets: 1 trade target to consider from each 100-loss team
- NY Mets: Top 12 free agents the team should look to sign this winter
- NY Mets: Jeff Wilpon’s legacy continues to plague the Amazins
Fortunately, he has looked better than he did in the 90 plate appearances from 2018 where he slashed .167/.200/.238 and made us beg for the return of Travis d’Arnaud and Kevin Plawecki. Nido’s ability to draw walks is practically non-existent. His destiny looks to be that of a lifetime backup.
There’s no reason to believe Nido will ever be much more than a number seven or eight hitter in the lineup. Based on his minor league numbers, we could still see him grow into a better offensive player. If he’s able to, he’ll do the Mets and the pitching staff a huge favor.
I understand Callaway’s comments. In the right context, we can all nod in agreement. You’ll rarely see a backup catcher start in a playoff series.
Often, personal catchers will need to take a seat and let the more offensively productive backstop start in his place even if it takes away some comfort from the pitcher.
This is only a major issue for the Mets when they are ready to play in the postseason. Unfortunately, it doesn’t look like they are headed that way in 2019. I could be wrong and if so, deGrom will just need to deal with having Wilson Ramos call a game.
Want your voice heard? Join the Rising Apple team!
Nido can ease these worries by simply becoming a serviceable hitter and not the minor league bat he has been.