While some will undoubtedly credit Ike Davis’ strong stint for the Mets’ PCL affiliate to Wally Backman’s tutorial and motivational skills, Newsday’s Marc Carig claims Davis’ spirits were bolstered by that all-important mentor to Mets old and young, Jeff Wilpon (above). Mindful of Jeff’s amazing achievements playing for Palm Beach Community College, Davis claims (with a straight face, I’m sure), “it’s nice to hear that the guy I’m working for has confidence in me.”
Jeff Wilpon took the unusual step of dropping in on the first baseman in Las Vegas last week, two days before he was summoned back to the big leagues.
“If they didn’t have confidence in me and they didn’t want me here,” Davis said, “it would have been a little tougher.”
Hitting coach Dave Hudgens said he already has shown improved pitch recognition and sharper swing mechanics since the demotion. The changes were in evidence again
Saturday night, when Davis went 0-for-2 with a strikeout but walked three times. That followed a 3-for-5 performance with two RBIs on Friday night against the Brewers, his first game back after a demotion that lasted nearly a month. Said Hudgens: “It’s just a matter of slowing down the tempo a little bit.”
“Obviously, it was nice to know that you’re just not discounted,” he said. “I had a bad couple of months, and to know that the owner still thinks highly of me is nice . . . It’s definitely nice to know that he still thinks I can still be the player he wants me to be.”
Davis said the gesture from Wilpon was reassuring. The owner dropped in on Davis on his way back from a trip to the West Coast.
“I like an open forum,” Davis said. “It’s easier to work with an open forum and with communication. It’s nice that we were able to do that.”