Brandon Nimmo Returning Would Be A Game Changer

According to Mike Puma of the New York Post, Brandon Nimmo may soon be beginning a rehab assignment which would put him on a schedule to hopefully return to the Mets lineup before September, and at least before the end of the season. If you are skeptical he could return, after all Nimmo had a rehab assignment earlier this year which did not end well, his wife offers hope as well:

If Nimmo is back, the Mets are a significantly improved team. It’s easy to forget, but Nimmo is one of the best players on this team.

Last year, Nimmo was the second best offensive player in the National League with a 149 wRC+. Despite getting injured during Spring Training, Nimmo was on his way to repeating his 2018 season. Through the first 17 games of the season, he was hitting .241/.388/.463 before being removed from the April 16 game against the Phillies after getting hit on the hand.

Up until that point, he had a a great 16.1 percent walk rate, and he was still a magnet getting hit by a pitch twice. Even with the struggles which ensued from getting hit on the hand and his neck, Nimmo maintained that 16.1 percent walk rate. Put another way, the skills which made him a great hitter in 2018 were still present in 2019 even with the injuries.

Taking that into account, Nimmo is a significant upgrade to the Mets outfield situation. It’s not just over Juan Lagares or Aaron Altherr, both of whom are not performing this year. It is also over Dominic Smith (who is also on the IL) and J.D. Davis. While Smith and Davis are good stories this year, they are not better than Nimmo and certainly not as an outfielder.

Putting that aside, Nimmo gives the Mets actual outfield depth and options. With him as an outfield option, Jeff McNeil can move to second base if needed. This gives more options for late inning double switches and defensive substitutions. With Nimmo returning, this will be the best Mets bench since the 2015 bench with Kelly Johnson, Juan Uribe, Michael Cuddyer, Kirk Nieuwenhuis, and Wilmer Flores/Ruben Tejada.

Nimmo returning makes the starting lineup better. It deepens the bench giving the team more options. It takes a Mets team already in contention, and it makes them even better. When Nimmo returns, we may be talking much differently about this club and their chances of making the postseason and doing damage in the postseason.

7 Replies to “Brandon Nimmo Returning Would Be A Game Changer”

  1. Fitz Cave says:

    Nimmo was 5th in the NL in oWAR last year in only 535 PAs. He hit .200 because he played one month plus with severe neck issues. Saying he is a 4th outfielder is ignorant.
    JD Davis is a revelation at the plate and can be hidden in LF for now, his -1.6 dWAR notwithstanding. Nimmo is a savant at getting on base (.404 in 2018) and should go back to leading off. McNeil just moves into the 2B role and bats 2nd as he is the best barrel manipulator (re: hit & run) in the game. Rosario doesn’t get on base enough to bat 1 or 2. He should bat 7th with Ramos batting 8th. Logic: Rosario gets on first and Ramos doubles, Rosario scores; Ramos gets on first and Rosario doubles, Ramos at 3rd with pitcher’s spot up.

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