Ike Davis is not off to a good start. Again. I wasn’t worried earlier in the season. I still think he’ll be okay by the end of the year, but the question as to if he’ll ever be the hitter we all expected to see is coming into question.
He has power. There’s no disputing that. He strikes out at an alarmingly high rate and he has enough time served that his price tag is going up. He’s at $3 million this season, and that price tag isn’t going to go any lower.
Mike Jacobs also came in and hit well. He was traded to get Delgado, which made perfect sense – but his career stalled after that. He also hit for power (albeit not as much as Ike). He also struck out a lot. But his batting average was low and as he got into his arbitration years, he became cost prohibitive.
Ike, however, is a much better defender than Jacobs ever was.
When Jacobs came back to the Mets on the second go around, his stay was short lived, and ultimately was replaced by Davis.
But once Jacobs started making bigger money ($3.27 million in his lone year with the Royals, and his first seven figure per year contract) and he hit only .228 with a .297 OBP – he was non-tendered. He was the Mets opening day first baseman in 2010 before being banished to the minors. After a suspension for PED’s, he didn’t make it back to the majors until last September for a cup of coffee and was cut in spring training this year.
I’m not saying Ike Davis will go down this route. He is getting into the territory where a decision will have to be made – pay him at bare minimum $3 million a year in his last few years of arbitration (likely more) or have to non-tender him if his production doesn’t warrant his salary.
This is a big year for Ike.