New York Mets top prospect Travis d’Arnaud has had an extremely difficult season in 2014. In addition to well-documented struggles at the plate, the 25-year-old catcher spent nearly two weeks out of the lineup as a result of a concussion, and now, reports indicate that d’Arnaud is likely to spend significant time in the minor leagues after being demoted on Saturday.
Adam Rubin of ESPN New York brings the latest report with some damning comments from Mets manager Terry Collins:
“I don’t have a timeframe,” Collins said, “but it’s going to take him a while to get it going to where we think it’s, ‘Hey, look, it’s time to bring him back here.'”
“When you’re struggling like we’re doing right now, we felt now was the time.”
“There’s not a lot of room for forgiveness here.”
It isn’t tough to imagine a world in which a player with a .180/.271/.273 slash line is demoted, but this is a big blow for Travis d’Arnaud and the Mets, especially when the team is in need of power bats. Since returning from the concussion issues, things have been even worse than the stats indicate for d’Arnaud, and there could be some long-term issues if his mechanics are not corrected.
However, Collins did provide a bit of positive response in anointing d’Arnaud as “our guy”.
“It’s very hard. He is our guy coming into spring training, and he’s been our guy since he got called up last year. But he’s a young player who is still learning, still trying to get better. You weigh the factors of: Is he getting something out of this? Or is it hurting him in the long run to continue to struggle?
“As I told him last night, ‘You’re not the reason we’re not scoring, but right now the fingers are being pointed in your direction, which I don’t think is necessarily fair. So right now you’ve got to go get your swing, come back and tear it up like everybody expected.’
It remains to be seen if d’Arnaud can ever hit effectively at the Major League level, and frankly, the clock is ticking.