Mets’ Brandon Nimmo likely to pay off as value continues to show
MIAMI — After Brandon Nimmo’s first-inning apparent triple was bizarrely taken out, and he was forced to stay at second base for some ridiculous reason, an inning later, he made sure he could circle the bases by lining up one out of the park that becomes a home away from home for the Mets.
Major League Baseball isn’t always so easy, especially for a guy from a state where the major sports involve calves and bulls, not balls. But Nimmo is an ever-rising guy, getting better every day and taking the Mets with him, like he did in their 9-3 win over the Marlins on Sunday.
Remember, he grew up in Wyoming, where rodeo is the state’s obsession. Nimmo would have wanted to ride bulls for a living when he was in elementary school, but luckily that’s not something they allow kids to do (at least I don’t think so).
Anyway, there’s no high school baseball in Cheyenne either. It’s like another world.
Back here, everyone told the Mets they were betting big taking a Wyomingite with the 13th overall pick in the 2011 MLB Draft, about a million picks higher than one had ever been taken previously (exact number below). At that time, the Mets had him at the top of their scoreboard. They were also fond of longtime baseball savants Francisco Lindor and Javier Baez, two others who would eventually become Mets, one longer than the other. But they were both gone on pick 13.
There were risks involved for such an inexperienced player, of course. But as then-Mets scouting director and now Trust scout Chad McDonald said by phone Sunday, “Heck, there’s a risk for everyone.”
The Mets bet on Nimmo’s early understanding of the strike zone. They bet on its speed. And above all, they bet on him as a human. They saw the potential and the desire. And he turned into an exceptional head hitter, and an elite central defender (one of the best by the metrics), and an indispensable Met. But maybe still not a finished product.
“I still have room to go, I still have room to learn,” he said. “I’m still learning [mode]. I don’t know if that will ever change.
It’s no surprise that Nimmo is blooming late and adding a terrific dimension to a Mets roster that’s been a little shaky lately. Nimmo’s presence is even more vital now, as Starling Marte is out, with no timeline provided. Which makes sense because you can imagine how painful it is to hit yourself with a fractured finger. If the Mets are playing shorthanded, the result of one of their league-high 73 strokes, that’s not the case as they continue on a September game slate that looks eerily similar. to a gift. Thank you, league office.
After a week with too many upsets, the Mets won back-to-back laughs – it was 20-6 the last two days here where it feels like Queens thanks to fan support – before returning to New York to face the Cubs also run. and pirates who have never raced, and maybe increase their lead.
Despite Nimmo’s first-inning work — umpires told the Mets the ball had lodged under the left-field wall, but the Mets sent an official afterwards to prove there was no room for a ball to lodge – the Mets played one of their best games of the season on Sunday. Tomas Nido hit his first home run of the season and reached base four times, one of three Mets to do so. Nimmo and Jeff McNeil, who is threatening to win a batting title, have also done so.
It’s a complete team and the value of Nimmo is evident every day. Rumor has it that the Mets told him during All-Star break that they’d like to discuss a long-term deal with the free agent after the season, which should come as no surprise.
Now he’s caught up in everything but stealing bases. He doesn’t fly partly because he doesn’t want to risk making an unnecessary outing. But it’s also because he never developed this skill.
He has elite speed (over 30 feet per second), but that’s not his bag. At least not yet – although he swept his first base of the season on Sunday.
“We saw an opportunity,” Nimmo said.
The Mets felt the same way in the 2011 draft. The previous top pick for a Wyomingite was pitcher Michael Beaver, chosen 109th by the Phillies in 1966, the very first draft, long before teams knew what they were up to. were doing.
The Mets liked Nimmo’s beating eye. But just as much, they loved the makeup. Which means they believed he would do what he could to make it work for him and for them. The guy you see running first on a walk is him. He wants to please.
If they were right about his baseball skills, McDonald said they thought he was going to make sure he got there because of who he was as a person.
It arrived well. They just hope his arrival as a star doesn’t come just before he leaves.