Matthew Cerrone, Lead Writer
Mets C Travis d’Arnaud is hitless in 17 plate appearances this season. He has struck out 35 percent of the time, while walking just twice.
It’s early, but I’m beginning to worry about d’Arnaud. He struggled last season looking like he was trying to do too much. This year, it’s kind of the opposite. It’s a small sample size, and there is plenty of time for him to be the .280, 15 home run catcher I think he can be in 2014. However, right now, he looks totally lost at the plate. He’s showing no signs of a young hitter with an idea of what he’s trying to do at the plate. His approach is very defensive. He’s reacting, he’s not in command, and that’s never good, especially for a 25-year-old guy in his rookie season. So, I’m more concerned than I usually would be for a guy with just 17 plate appearances.
”It certainly is a concern if it starts to get in his head that he can’t hit at this level,” manager Terry Collins said this past weekend. “I’m worried about his mental approach more than anything. … We told him he has to battle through this.”
MLB.com ranked d’Arnaud the other organization’s top hitting prospect, and the top catching prospect in baseball entering 2014.
D’Arnaud hit .202 with one home run and five RBI in 99 at-bats for the Mets late last season. However, in 86 career games at Triple-A, he hit .328 with 18 home runs, 64 RBIs and an OPS of .990.
“He’ll be fine,” David Wright told reporters, when asked about d’Arnaud’s struggles. “He can hit. He’s hit at every level. … Offensively, he’ll come around, because his track record says he’s going to hit.”