Pitching health comes first. The Mets of the next couple years likely won’t go anywhere unless their best young pitchers hold up amid the rigors of a long season. But the second plank of any bounce-back plan must see the young hitters now making their way to the majors continue to develop. Mets management has made no secret of how it plans to nurture that young hitting talent: by preaching plate discipline every step of the way.
Ace Mets beat writer Marc Carig recently dove deep into the development of one of those young hitters, rookie outfielder Brandon Nimmo. As Carig detailed, Nimmo’s commitment to spitting on balls half an inch off the plate and hammering those that make it over borders on obsessive. He’s a dedicated, detail-obsessed player, a video-room junkie, or as General Manager Sandy Alderson called Nimmo in reference to his focus on disciplined hitting: “He’s the poster boy.”
Nimmo’s overall numbers might pale in comparison to phenoms like Aaron Judge, Cody Bellinger, Matt Olson, and Rhys Hoskins. But 184 plate appearances into his own rookie campaign, there’s no denying the quality of his batting eye. Only three other NL hitters with as many times at bat have walked at a higher clip than his 16.3% base-on-ball rate, and only 15 can top his .388 on-base percentage.