Prior to being promoted to the Mets earlier this month, Matt den Dekker had been hitting .334 with a .947 OPS and recently named to the PCL All-Star team while playing for Triple-A Las Vegas.
However, since joining the Mets, he is batting .237 with two doubles and four walks in 12 games.
“I was seeing the ball really well out there and my swing was going good too, just putting it altogether and having good at-bats night in and night out,” he told SNY’s Robert Brender in an interview, which you can listen to below…
Maggie Wiggin: Den Dekker has taken some small steps forward since last season. His strikeout rate dropped from an alarming 37 percent to 23 percent, which, though still poor, is manageable. He is also walking more and not hitting as many balls in the air.
It’s not nearly enough, though, and he needs to take full advantage of the last five weeks of the season to show improved feel for the strike zone and start turning that comfort into solid contact…
His batting average on balls in play is low for a player with his speed who can hit line drives, so some better luck going forward may help him relax at the plate and fuel additional success.
Yes, he has lived up to his reputation of being a strong defensive outfielder, amassing five defensive runs saved in just over 300 career innings. However, as good as he’s been in the field, he’ll need to make significant improvements at the plate to justify remaining on the roster.
“I’ve hit some balls hard and I’m just trying to keep it up and stay positive,” den Dekker told Brender, in regards to building on the confidence he developed in Triple-A.
If he can turn that confidence into more consistent performance at the plate, he could again find himself vying for a fourth or fifth outfielder spot next Spring.