Eduardo Escobar hit only .177/.222/.235 for the New York Mets in August. It was his worst month of the season. Throughout those 36 plate appearances, he failed to hit a single home run—something he was brought to Flushing to do.
What makes it worse is that the numbers weren’t all that much worse than what he had been doing in the previous three months. Highs from May-July include a .220 batting average, a .245 OBP, and a .462 slugging percentage.
Escobar has been slumping all year. When he landed on the IL in August, it wasn’t a huge loss. However, since returning, he seems to be the player the Mets were hoping they had landed. It’s early but some recent success is a nice sign of life for a player that has been mostly irrelevant all year long.
The Mets starting lineup could use a hot-hitting Eduardo Escobar
The lack of a productive DH makes Escobar even more vital for the Mets in the coming weeks. It doesn’t seem as if either Daniel Vogelbach or Darin Ruf will be able to give them what they need. With a bench of guys who belong on the bench, there is no way to really change things up all that much.
Escobar has found himself batting eighth many times these days. It’s the only logical place to put him. Some more regular power and the absence of automatic outs, he could find himself moving up. He is, after all, a switch-hitter. A nice tool to have in the arsenal to help a manager break up lefties or righties in a lineup, we shouldn’t be shocked to see Escobar bat as high as fifth depending on how warm he stays and what the matchup is.
It’s far too soon to anoint Escobar as the savior of the Mets lineup. Frankly, they don’t need much saving. What they need is a little more depth. This is a team that has become a lineup of six very good players. Escobar, the DHs, and the catchers aren’t doing so well.
Could it be that Escobar just needed some time off to finally find his swing? He had an opportunity to face some bad Washington Nationals pitching over the weekend and should see other weak arms in September. It’s a chance to build some confidence yet not get too cozy. October’s face-offs will be much tougher.
A healthy and even semi-productive Escobar can drastically change how we feel about the Mets offense. His late arrival might not be ideal but at least the flight to contribute wasn’t canceled.