Tuesday, May 28, 2013

NL King - When Will Ike Get Right ?

One of the many mysterious so far to this season is the disastrous start by NY Mets 1B Ike Davis. So much so that a trip to the minors could happen to get his swing  and confidence right. In Sunday nights game Ike got the game winning hit in the 8th inning, a 2 run single so maybe that gives him a bit of a boost. But first let's look at Ike's background going into this season.

Was regarded as a top prospect as he was a 1st round pick in 2008 Had a solid rookie year in 2010 as Ike came up in late April and in 147 games put up 19HR, 71RBI, 73R, 3SB & .264 Avg. Ike' sophomore season looked like he was going to be even better until a freak injury in May of 2011 and KO'd his season after just playing in 36 games where Ike went 7HR, 25RBI, 20R, 0SB, .302 Avg. But going into last season Ike had two things going against him, first he had not played since May 10th the previous year and Ike was struggling with some sort of effects of valley fever. So when Ike struggled in the 1st half last season in 2012 it wasn't a huge surprise and could be explained. But Ike had a huge second half and his body started to feel better and get back in the swing of things (pun intended) and finished with stats of 32HR, 90RBI, 66R, 0SB, .227 Avg. The average was horrible but everyone felt Ike got things straightened out and the valley fever was behind him.

This season Ike has looked worse than last year. Going into Monday May 27th games Ike's stats are 4HR, 11RBI, 14RBI, 0SB, .158v Avg. Ike has struck out 54 times in 152 AB's and only has 6 extra base hits. If Ike did not get that 2 run single in Sunday nights game and struck out instead I think it's quite possible he could have be sent down to the minors on Monday morning May 28th. But for now Ike is here and can he finally get it going? I am not saying Ike's hitting mechanics are one of Paul Molitor or Tony Gwynn but he is not the hitter he has shown this season so far. Has Ike got into bad habits so far this season yes but like most athletes the biggest problem they have when the go into a huge slump is CONFIDENCE !!!!

When you struggle as much as Ike has his confidence has to be at an all time low even worse than last year. It does happen and it happens to the best players in any sport. In 2002 Pete Sampras who hold not won a tournament since 2000 at Wimbledon was in the worst slump of his career. Sampras at times looked like a park player they way he was hitting the ball. But he was back at Wimbledon in 2002 where Sampras was a 7 time champion so only good things could happen right? That's a big no as Sampras lost in the 2nd round to 145th ranked qualifier from Switzerland George Bastl. Sampras after the tournament called up his old coach Paul Annecone (now Roger Federer's coach) and begged him to come back and help him. Annecone did but the next round of tournaments leading into the US Open Sampras failed miserably losing to everyone along the way. So Pete entered the US Open as the 17th seed ad won his first two matches against top 100 players playing good enough to win. Then Sampras found a way to win a 5 set match against Greg Rusedski (33th seed) although he struggled mightly and found a way to win which he had not been doing. Then in the next round Pete played Tommy Haas who was playing well and many people thought Pete didn't have a chance. Pete didn't have his A game yet but played well and beat Haas in 4. Then in the Quarters Pete played the young American Andy Roddick and the old Pete came out trounced Roddick in straights. In the semi's Pete got a good draw and beat veteran Sjeng Schalken and low and behold faced his old time rival in the finals Andre Agassi and beat him in 4 sets to win his 5th US Open, 14th grand slam and win the last match he ever played on the tour.

How did this happen when Pete could barely beat anyone leading into the US Open? Confidence my friends when you don't believe in life you can accomplish a certain task but it playing major league baseball, professional tennis, presenting a new business pitch or solving a problem in you office the odds of one being successful is about zero. You have to believe to be succesful in anything one does in life. So when a baseball player is in a massve slmup it's like the old saying goes a couple of bloop hits or seeing eye hits then one good hit and then a big hit and away you go. It can happen that quickly. I believe this coming week is a huge week for Ike Davis. He does not have to be the National League player of the week but he needs to start moving forward. If he doesn't the Mets are going to have no choice but to send him to AAA in Vegas. So for Ike and all of us out there believe in yourself no matter what. You can't do anything unless you do. Who would of thought todays article would have a flare of Tony Robbins and a comparision to Pete Sampras.

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NL King - C.Lizza

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