- Last Updated: 4:01 PM, May 5, 2012
- Posted: 2:28 AM, May 5, 2012
Ike Davis’ rhythmic swing sent the pitch 15 rows deep into the right-field porch last night at Citi Field.
That was batting practice, though, and it was something that hasn’t been seen in a game here this year. Citi Field continues to be a house of horrors for Davis.
Davis went 0-for-4 with a key strikeout and a game-changing error in the Mets’ painful, 5-4 loss to the Diamondbacks last night, their fourth straight defeat.
At Citi Field, Davis is batting .064, the worst home average in baseball. He is 3-for-47 with zero home runs at home. On the road, he is batting .283 (13-for-46) with three home runs. Bringing in the fences hasn’t helped Davis.
This is the season of the disappearing power hitter in some respects, with Albert Pujols still looking for his first home run. King Albert has five RBIs and is batting .202, but that’s one RBI more than Robinson Cano.
With the Mets leading 4-2 in the eighth, Davis allowed Justin Upton’s ground ball to get past him to start the inning. That helped ignite a three-run rally for Arizona that turned the game around as Jon Rauch fizzled in relief.
Davis is a rhythm hitter with lots of movement in his swing, and the Mets need him to start hitting in the middle of their lineup. When he struck out in the eighth against David Hernandez with the potential tying run at first, the second strike was a breaking ball that hit Davis in the back leg. That’s how bad he is going.
“My last at-bat, I tried calling time and then he pitched right as I was calling time and I swung at a ball that hit me in the leg. That’s the first time I’ve ever done that in my life,’’ Davis said. “I give up the error. It’s definitely on me tonight, for sure, I don’t know what to tell you.’’
Davis said there is nowhere to go but up.
“I was hitting like .078 the other week, now I’m at [.172], so if I keep doing this in the next couple of weeks, hopefully, in two weeks I can get .250,’’ he said. “I’m not panicking, we shouldn’t panic yet, and I’ll get better, I mean, I can’t really see myself getting any worse.’’
Darryl Strawberry, who was at the ballpark to honor David Wright for breaking his Mets RBI record, had the perfect power lefty swing. When asked by The Post about Davis’ swing, Strawberry made this point:
“Ike just has to slow down at the plate. Wait,’’ Strawberry said. “I just think he is way out in front. He’s got to just stay back and hit it the other way. He can just start doing that in batting practice because he gets way out there too quick.’’
Davis is trying to wait, and wait.
Manager Terry Collins said Davis’ struggles are related to last season, when he got just 129 at-bats because of a serious left ankle injury. Davis rolled the ankle in his first at-bat last night and did not run out a ground ball to short, but said his ankle is fine.
“I think what we’re seeing is the result of a guy who got 130 major league at-bats last season when he should have had 500, and I think he’s searching,’’ Collins said. “He was swinging so good when he got hurt, but there’s no substitute for playing time. ... Eventually, he’s going to get it going. This is the big leagues. You have to learn how to grind it out. When you come out of it, you learn something about yourself.’’
On the just-completed road trip, Davis was 7-for-21 with six RBIs. He did pick up an RBI last night on a ground out.
There is much work to be done. Davis is hitting .158 with runners in scoring position and has struck out 15 times in those 38 at-bats.
It starts with his hitting rhythm, which Davis is desperately searching to find, in games, not just in batting practice.Follow @NYPostsports