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Jeff McNeil - The Hitting Machine Gets Hurt

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  • Jeff McNeil - The Hitting Machine Gets Hurt

    Jeff McNeil is Unstoppable Right Now: ‘Dirtbag baseball,’ Ted Williams Comp


    by GREG JOYCE
    1 May 2019; 4:31 AM ET

    After he had dove into first base successfully — both by reaching safely and without injury — Jeff McNeil took off his helmet and yelled into the Mets dugout.

    The man called Squirrel by his teammates was just being a pest again.

    A perfect drag bunt that scored Juan Lagares from third base in the third inning Tuesday night was only the latest feat from McNeil, who turned in a four-hit night in the Mets’ 4-3 walk-off win over the Reds in 10 innings at Citi Field.

    He came in and said, ‘That’s Dirtbag baseball,’ manager Mickey Callaway said, referring to McNeil’s alma mater, the Long Beach State Dirtbags.

    That was probably the definition of it right there, McNeil said. That’s how I was taught to play the game and that’s how I’m always going to play the game.

    McNeil’s 4-for-5 night sent him into May batting .370 with a .957 OPS in 28 games, trying to further prove that his strong rookie stint last year was no fluke. His four-hit effort was the fifth of his career and he now has 13 multi-hit games this season.

    He looked like Ted Williams out there, Pete Alonso said.

    McNeil nearly won it in the 10th inning, but he hit the ball too hard to drive in J.D. Davis from second base. His single to right field was a bullet, forcing Davis to stop at third with no outs, but it set the table for Alonso to end it on a sacrifice fly.

    In the eighth inning, McNeil ripped a double to the right-field corner and came around to score on Michael Conforto’s single — which proved to be the tying run after Jeurys Familia blew the 3-1 lead in the ninth.

    But his most unique hit came in the third inning on the drag bunt. McNeil had first tried on a 1-0 count, but it went foul. Callaway saw McNeil staring down at first base after the foul, but first baseman Joey Votto never moved in, so he tried it again. It drew Votto off the bag, forcing pitcher Luis Castillo to cover, but he and the throw did not get there in time to beat McNeil’s dive.

    I saw them align there [Monday] and I told [hitting coach] Chili Davis today, if I get a good opportunity to do it with a guy on third base, I’m going to do it, McNeil said.

    They defended that as well as they possibly could and he still got a hit, Callaway said. He knew that, that’s why he tried it. Unbelievable.


    Drew's Sig

  • #2
    https://twitter.com/mikemayerMMO/status/
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    • #3
      Jeff McNeil reminds me of a kid who tags along behind his brother to the local baseball field. Just happy to be there, and the older kids keep choosing him when picking sides because the damn kid just plays too well.

      He has become the current "house favorite" (selected by Mrs. mjjm & me), replacing Wilmer.

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      • #4
        Originally posted by mjjm367 View Post
        Jeff McNeil reminds me of a kid who tags along behind his brother to the local baseball field. Just happy to be there, and the older kids keep choosing him when picking sides because the damn kid just plays too well.

        He has become the current "house favorite" (selected by Mrs. mjjm & me), replacing Wilmer.
        It's hard not to like a guy that hustles all the time and does all the little things to be a gritty player.

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        • #5
          IMO, McNeil is the ideal #2 hitter...lefty with good bat control to protect a speedy leadoff hitter while on base...doesn't have a high swing/miss rate...

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          • #6
            Agreed, but until Nimmo comes out of his funk, we don't have another leadoff hitter

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            • #7
              It's hard not to like a guy that hustles all the time and does all the little things to be a gritty player.

              Indeed, a high BA and OBP...all dependent on the middle of the order to develop his value. Players who over the past two weeks have disappeared. Alonso .192, Nimmo .154, Cano .219, Ramos .132 and Conforto .162.

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              • #8
                Latest Injury Updates on Jeff McNeil:
                Placed on IL, but Brodie Van Wagenen 'encouraged' by MRI Results


                McNeil injured his hamstring on Tuesday night


                by DANNY ABRIANO
                14 Aug 2019, 4:40 PM ET

                Aug. 13, 10:56 PM:
                McNeil pulled up lame while trying to leg out an infield hit while leading off the nitnh inning against the Braves.

                After the game, McNeil said he felt his hamstring tighten up before making his final stride for the first base bag.

                "I didn't feel it pop," McNeil explained. "I felt a little snag. Nothing crazy. I guess we'll see where it is in the morning. ... Hopefully, maybe it's just a cramp that I felt, but I guess we'll see."


                Aug. 13, 10:56 PM:
                McNeil pulled up lame while trying to leg out an infield hit while leading off the ninth inning against the Braves.

                After the game, McNeil said he felt his hamstring tighten up before making his final stride for the first base bag.

                "I didn't feel it pop," McNeil explained. "I felt a little snag. Nothing crazy. I guess we'll see where it is in the morning. ... Hopefully, maybe it's just a cramp that I felt, but I guess we'll see."


                Aug. 14, 10:58 AM:
                Triple-A Syracuse INF Ruben Tejada is meeting the Mets in Atlanta as insurance in case the team needs to place McNeil on the IL, SNY's Andy Martino confirmed.

                Tejada, 29, is hitting .337/.412/.486 with six homers in 73 games this season.

                He last played in the majors in 2017 and last played in the majors for the Mets in 2015.


                Aug. 14, 12:40 PM:
                The MRI on McNeil's hamstring revealed only a mild strain, reports MLB.com's Anthony DiComo.

                According to DiComo, the Mets expect McNeil to be able to return in 10 days.

                SNY's Andy Martino confirmed that McNeil has been placed on the IL (with Ruben Tejada activated), and that there is "initial optimism" about McNeil's potentially quick return.


                Aug. 14 3:59 PM:
                As expected, the Mets officially placed McNeil on the 10-day IL, with Ruben Tejada replacing him on the 25-man roster. Meanwhile Jacob Rhame was transferred to the 60-day IL and will not return to the mound this season.

                Mets GM Brodie Van Wagenen addressed McNeil's situation before Wednesday's game.

                "Very low-grade (strain), so we hope that he can progress quickly and get back on the field," Van Wagenen said.

                "It's the same leg (that he injured earlier this season). Hard to compare the two. I think he came back in 11 or 12 days the last go round. Always hard to say until a guy starts progressing with activity, but we were encouraged by the MRI that we'll get a quick turnaround like last time."



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                • #9
                  So my initial comment regarding McNeil was a gut feeling that he had sold out from his "Hitting Machine" ways to buy into the "Chicks dig the long ball" approach. The scenario was the bases were loaded with 1 out in a tied game. A single plates 2, and a Sac Fly is the lead. The 0-1 count, Jeff took what looked to me was a sellout swing which was a foul backwards. The next pitch he took looking for strike 3. We needed the guy who shortened his swing and hit all the gaps, but we got power McNeil instead.

                  As mentioned, this was all gut feeling, I didn't look at the stats, I didn't do any analysis. I just knew the guy had been hitting near .350, was down to .316, but had a lot of HRs to show for it.

                  So when I saw Sax's comments on the thread that said despite producing a more pedestrian average (.280 since July 1st), he has produced more Runs. So I took a look at that and he's not wrong. Based on Jeff's stats alone, he has definitely generated more runs (as defined by the total of his personal runs scored and batted in). Short of reproducing June, where he hit 373 w/ decent power, his best run producing months were hitting sub .300. See the last column of runs generated per PA.
                  PA R RBI AVG OBP HR K K/PA HR/PA (R+RBI)/PA
                  April 116 15 12 370 457 1 11 9% 1% 23%
                  May 73 5 3 277 356 1 9 12% 1% 11%
                  June 107 17 19 373 402 4 16 15% 4% 34%
                  July 95 16 12 281 326 5 18 19% 5% 29%
                  August 75 15 11 297 400 5 11 15% 7% 35%
                  Sept 92 14 16 265 337 7 10 11% 8% 33%

                  It is an interested conversation, how much selling out starts to become detrimental?

                  One big hole in the metrics are how does his decrease in average and OBP affect those around him? Of course hitting a HR guarantees you a +2, if not more, on the R+RBI column. But is the overall team effect negative? Based on simplistic data in front of us, I'd start with the theory that it does not as the RBI number isn't going to be affected by his inability to get on base, and his run number stays consistent in runs scored per AB with a minor variability. You can theorize that hitting .265 is starting to have a negative impact on his ability to be plated, but .297 and .281 ended up being his top R/PA months.
                  R/PA
                  13%
                  7%
                  16%
                  17%
                  20%
                  15%
                  Granted this is a team sport, and no singular persons stats can tell the whole story, but Sax peeked my interest, and I was surprised by the numbers. So thank you for that and wanted to share.

                  PS: PLEASE PLEASE PLEASE let my excel work

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                  • saxon
                    saxon commented
                    Editing a comment
                    Thanks for the mention and the hard work compiling the stats...the excel work looks good

                  • NY FANG
                    NY FANG commented
                    Editing a comment
                    Went against my gut, so took deeper look. Can't argue with the numbers, gut was wrong. And yea, Excel pasted nicely

                • #10
                  https://twitter.com/DeeshaThosar/status/
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