What's wrong with Ike Davis?

May, 23, 2012
5/23/12
3:59
PM ET
Nobody wants to believe in the New York Mets, but they beat the Pirates 3-1 on Wednesday and there they are at 24-20 even though they've been outscored by 29 runs on the season.

One reason not to believe is the continued struggles of first baseman Ike Davis, who went 1-for-4 against Pittsburgh, which actually improved his season line to .159/.213/.290. Once Jason Bay returns from the disabled list from his fractured rib, possibly by the end of the month, don't be surprised if the Mets send down Davis and play Lucas Duda at first base.

What's happened to the player who had a promising rookie season in 2010 and was tearing it up early last season until he went down with a season-ending ankle injury? There were reports that Davis contracted Valley Fever in the offseason, although both Davis and the Mets have denied that's an issue.

What is clear is that Davis is no longer driving pitches on the outside part of the plate. Davis stands way off the plate, so perhaps that’s part of his current problems. In the top heat map, check out his isolated power and hit chart in 2012 against outside pitches. And in the second heat map, his isolated power and hit chart versus outside pitches in 2010-11.

Ike Davis heat mapESPNAbove: Ike Davis' Isolated Power and hit chart versus LHP, 2012.
As you can see, he's doing very little with those pitches other than a few singles. Now, compare to 2010-11, when he was driving those pitches with more authority, including several home runs to center field and right field.

Ike Davis Heat MapESPN Stats & InformationIke Davis: Isolated Power and hit chart versus LHP, 2010-2011.
It doesn't take long for scouting reports like this to get around the league. Seems like Davis needs some time in Triple-A to rediscover his swing and approach.

Follow David Schoenfield on Twitter @dschoenfield.

David Schoenfield | email

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