With the Mets offense struggling mightily over the last week, Mickey Callaway decided to really shake things up with the lineup, most notably at the top of the order.
When Rosario was still just a prospect, many had thought it would be ideal for him to be the team’s leadoff hitter in the future. Last night, they got to see that in major league action for the first time, as he went 1-for-4 with a stolen base.
It’s hard to see this one lasting, though, unless he learns how to walk more. On the year, the 22-year old has only managed to walk eight times, and that goes along with a very unimpressive slash line of .247/.279/.359. That does not bode well for a leadoff hitter who is supposed to make sure that someone is on base once the middle of the order comes up to bat.
On top of that, Rosario is a free swinger, which is not what a team would want from a leadoff hitter as they are often supposed to be the one that works the count and hopefully tires out the pitcher so that he will make a mistake with the big threats in the middle of the order.
Before I move on to the other interesting tidbit (Brandon Nimmo moving down to the three spot), I’ll quickly address the swap of Todd Frazier and Asdrubal Cabrera in the lineup.
The thinking behind that probably largely had to do with Nimmo’s position in the lineup, as Cabrera and Nimmo have been the team’s two best hitters this season which leads me to believe they probably just wanted to have them batting back-to-back.
Last night, Frazier and Cabrera both hit first-inning home runs to give the Mets an early 3-0 lead.
Now, moving on to the Nimmo part of this equation, which might be the most intriguing one of all. The 25-year old has simply been fantastic this season. In 141 at-bats, he’s hitting .270/.411/.560 with eight home runs and 15 RBI.
Look at those last two numbers though. He has eight home runs and only 15 RBI to show for it. That right there is the rationale to move him down in the order, especially with five home runs in his last 15 games alone. Moving Nimmo down in the order could potentially put him in better positions to drive in runs, as most of his home runs have been of the solo variety to this point.
While it could certainly be argued that Nimmo is better served at the top of the order as a table-setter, his new-found home run prowess makes him a potentially lethal weapon in the middle of the order, combined with his general ability to get on base.
The outfielder recorded a triple in the first inning, his fifth of the year, and later scored that inning on Cabrera’s two-run blast.
It remains to be seen whether or not this will be a long-term fix or if this was just simply lineup experimentation, but it’s certainly worth keeping an eye on.