Jeff McNeil can earn back our trust if he starts hitting with runners in scoring position
McNeil killed a lot of rallies last year. He ended some others. He got in the way of the Mets having a couple more. With runners in scoring position in 2021, McNeil slashed .170/.233/.213. In a year where so much went wrong for him and his teammates at the plate, he was one of the biggest culprits when it came to clutch hitting with men within 180 feet of scoring.
Even though McNeil isn’t an RBI guy, letting this many opportunities go to waste is a crime.
McNeil had some very interesting splits last season. He hit similarly against lefties and righties with all of his pop coming versus right-handed pitchers. There’s no surprise there. What may be some cause for alarm are his home and road splits.
At Citi Field, McNeil batted .294/.356/.444. When he wasn’t at home, McNeil was a .211/.281/.567 hitter. What gives?
Throughout the season, there seemed to be something going on with McNeil. He was clearly frustrated at times. He showed the emotion which only exasperated how some felt about him. This isn’t something that needs to necessarily change. If he does other things well, we’ll see less helmet-throwing and sighing.
Among the players who may have lost our trust last year, McNeil will have the easiest time earning it back. He has had it before. All he has to do is be his old self again. How hard can that be?