Expect Brandon Nimmo to Remain Good

I have been fairly bullish about Brandon Nimmo. I wrote at the beginning of 2018 that he looks poised to break out due to a changed swing and his ability to hit the ball hard.

That said, I was not at all expecting him to be as good as he was. I was expecting a .260/.380/.450 but instead he hit .265/.404/.483 with a .385 wOBA and 149 wRC+. Nimmo finished second in the NL in OBP, 18th in slugging, fourth in wOBA, and second in wRC+.

Nimmo was having an elite season from March to June 23. In that period, Nimmo was hitting .284/.400/.574 with a .413 wOBA and 167 wRC+. On June 24, the young outfielder was hit on the hand and missed a few games. He came back when he probably should have just been placed on the DL. From then to the All-Star break, Nimmo hit .188/.309/.290. Nimmo returned from the break to hit .279/.446/.471 with a .403 wOBA and 161 wRC+.

Did Nimmo have a bad month because pitchers adjusted or was he dealing with a lingering injury? I’m willing to lean on the latter because during Nimmo’s bad stretch, he was not being pitched any differently than he was when he was great.

During the March to June period, he saw pitches in the zone 44.5% of the time and had a zone contact rate of 85% while making contact outside of the zone 60% of the time. From June 24 to July 15, those numbers were 44.6%, 74.5%, and 45.5%. In the second half, those numbers were 44.5%, 83.2%, and 58.4%.

Essentially, those numbers tell us that Nimmo was seeing the same amount of pitches in the zone but during his cold stretch, he was just making less contact. It’s a good sign that his bat speed was being hindered and as a result, he was not getting the same results as he did from March to June. After a four-day break though, his contact numbers returned and so did his success.

It’s not just Nimmo’s plate discipline that should make fans excited about him going forward, it’s also his batted ball profile.

When Nimmo makes contact, his expected weighted on-base average is .389. It just further goes to show that his success from 2018 was not driven by luck. His hard hit rate is 42%, a number that rivals that of Andrew McCutchen and Juan Soto. The fact of the matter is, he has an elite eye at the plate and a strong batted ball profile.

Now that the J.T. Realmuto rumors are done with, it appears Mets fans can look forward to another strong season from Nimmo.

About Dilip Sridhar 493 Articles
I became a Mets fan in the 2008 season. Since the Alderson regime, I've embraced saber-metrics and advanced stats to back up my eye tests.