Originally written on Mets Merized Online  |  Last updated 11/9/14
Kirk came up last season after CF Andres Torres went down. Billed as an athletic and toolsy outfielder with some promise, Nieuwenhuis hit the ground running raking to the tune of a .325 batting average in March and April. Then came some strike outs, and more strike outs, and then came a whole lot of weak grounders and even more strikeouts, which led to his demotion in July when he batted .105  — deer in the headlights. This was the same player that had a .298 avg. a .908 OPS and a .403 OBP in AAA as a 23 year old, but major league pitchers figured him out. They’d pour in a couple of early strikes, some breaking pitches to mess up his line of sight, and would finish him off with a fastball up and in. Early on Kirk was swinging at everything — including that first strike or two. With a 0 – 0 count, Kirk hit .364. He was clobbering get-me-over strikes. With an 0 – 1 count his average dropped to .250, still, not bad. Now all hitters do poorly with 2 strikes, but not quite as ...
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