It’s been roughly a month since the New York Mets brought first baseman Ike Davis back to the big leagues following his demotion to the minors, and there have been some obvious signs of improvement. However, Davis’ power has been noticeable absent for the past month, which is a problem.
There’s no doubt that Davis’ plate discipline has been much improved after his time in the minors. He has already drawn more walks since being recalled than he did in the two months of the season before his demotion. Davis is no longer flailing wildly at pitches out of the strike zone, which has made him look comfortable and more confident in the batter’s box.
Now that Davis isn’t swinging at bad pitches, it has forced pitchers to throw him strikes in order to get him out, which has led to marked improvement, as Davis hit .242 in the month of July. He’s been even better in August; in fact, following Wednesday’s game against the Colorado Rockies, Davis has reached base in 14 of his last 18 plate appearances.
However, the power part of Davis’ game has yet to come around. Although he hit four doubles in July and already has three in August, Davis has just one home run since being recalled. Although all the walks, singles and doubles Davis has been collecting lately are a welcomed improvement, the Mets need him to hit home runs.
Despite struggling the first half of last season, Davis managed to finish the season with 32 home runs, and he needs to showcase that kind of power over the final two months of the season. During his time in the minors, Davis hit seven home runs in just 21 games, so there’s no doubt that he’s still capable of hitting homers.
Davis needs to hit home runs in order to be the impact bat that the Mets expect him to be, and need him to be moving forward. Regardless of how many doubles he may collect, Davis is not the same hitter if he’s not hitting home runs, and the fact that he has just one since his return is a concern.
The jury is still out on Davis since he got back to the majors, and the Mets have been patient with him, giving him every opportunity to solidify himself as their first baseman of the future. But as promising as his play has been of late, it means little if he doesn’t start displaying more power and hitting the ball out of the ballpark.