Murphy May Have Lost More than Just His Stroke

May 19, 2009

Many moons ago, the only disappointing aspect of young Daniel Murphy’s short tenure with the Mets occurred when a fly ball was headed straight towards him. In those days, Mets fans were comfortable with their left fielder’s shortcomings. Most of the time, they looked the other way, satisfied by the patience that he was showing at the plate. Through the Mets first twenty games, Murphy managed to hit safely in seventeen of them. Heading into the month of May, he was batting .324 with 13 runs scored and a .373 on-base percentage. With those numbers, Mets manager Jerry Manuel was finding it much easier to tolerate an occasional misplay or two by his young left fielder.

However, with the current absence of first baseman Carlos Delgado, Murphy’s playing time and his offensive output has diminished considerably. In his last ten games, Murphy has only been asked to start in half of them. During that span, he has managed just 2 hits in 21 at-bats. On Sunday night, Murphy started in left but was lifted in the eighth inning for a pinch hitter.

“I don’t think Murphy is swinging quite well now,” Manuel said. “I don’t see the quick hands. It’s probably mechanical or fundamental right now for him. He’s not playing on a consistent basis like he’d like to be, and he’s just kind of struggling.”

It’s worth mentioning that Murphy has gone 1 for 5 as a pinch hitter during that ten game stretch along with a RBI. Perhaps he could better serve the Mets coming off the bench. If you remember correctly, that’s where it all began for Murphy.

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