When the Mets placed Lucas Duda on the 15-day disabled list Saturday, they decided to promote Zach Lutz to the big leagues instead of Ike Davis. I, like some others, felt this was the right move, as the organization should make sure Ike has put himself back on track with his swing before bringing him back. However, according to the Las Vegas 51s Inside twitter account, Davis may be back in the big leagues sooner than we were anticipating.
Terry Collins was asked why the Mets decided against promoting Ike, and he pointed to the string of left-handers projected to start against New York this week. He didn’t wants to put his first baseman in a position to succeed out of the gate when he returns, rather than put him in a hole after he worked hard in Triple-A. That apparently could end sooner than we thought it would, according to this tweet:
Ike Davis will likely be recalled when Mets return home Friday to face Nationals.
— Las Vegas 51s Inside (@LasVegas51sINS) June 24, 2013
Prior to getting demoted, Davis was enduring an awful season. His .161/.242/.258 line was one of the worst of qualified players in the major leagues. That line includes five homers, 16 RBIs, 19 walks, and 66 strikeouts in 186 at-bats. His swing was a mess, and the front office finally made the decision to send a player that hit 32 home runs last season down to Triple-A to fix what he was doing at the plate.
After a slow start, Davis has started to turn things around with Wally Backman and the Vegas coaching staff helping him out. His swing has improved and become more consistent than it was during the first few months of the season, and he’s hitting .310/.463/.690 with four home runs and eight RBIs in 42 at-bats. Obviously, in a hitter’s league like the PCL, one can’t just look at these statistics and deem someone ready for the next level, especially in this particular case.
While his K-rate in Vegas is still at 20.4%, that’s a dramatic improvement from the 31.9% he had previously displayed with the Mets. What has grabbed my eye is the fact that he has more walks (12) than strikeouts (11) in Triple-A. This is a small sample size and the pitching isn’t as good down there as it is in the majors, but it didn’t matter who Davis was hitting against in the bigs; if they threw it out of the strike zone, he was swinging at it. In addition to needing to fix his swing, he had to get back on track with his patience at the plate, and it seems like he’s been able to accomplish that.
If this tweet holds some truth to it, do you think Ike is ready to make his way back to Flushing and hit in Terry Collins’s lineup? It’s been two weeks since he was demoted. If he continues to swing the bat well and show patience this week, he should earn the right to try and prove to everyone he’s made the necessary changes to be successful.
While they’re not about to fight for a playoff spot, New York has been playing well lately, and if a productive Davis is inserted into the lineup, we could really see this team start making strides toward being a competitive team in the near future, both on the mound and at the plate.