Lucas Duda continues to impress just about everyone at Mets camp.
Duda is sometimes compared to a young Jason Giambi. The similarities are obvious to Mets general manager Sandy Alderson, who drafted Giambi in Oakland.
“I think they will end up having a similar profile: Power guys with an excellent eye at the plate,” Alderson said. “If you have that combination, you can be a superstar.
“Especially for a left-handed hitter, if you’ve got power, the high on-base percentage, the approach and you can hit left-handed pitching, that’s [Reds first baseman] Joey Votto. It’s a handful of guys, and [Duda] has already demonstrated that he has that potential.”
According to Andy McCullough of The Star-Ledger, Dan Warthen has been working with Jon Niese on maintaining his focus on the mound.
A rudimentary scan of his disastrous appearances in 2011 provides some insight. Niese allowed at least five runs in nine starts last season. In each of those games, Niese allowed at least three runs or more in one inning. He exhibited a tendency to implode quickly, rather than melt down over time.
To curb that, Warthen has spent the early part of camp counseling Niese not to let his mind drift. Catcher Josh Thole, a year older, now has more freedom to control Niese if he notices a series of sloppy deliveries. And Niese will be on the lookout, striving for day-to-day vigilance.
Finally, for a little light-hearted entertainment, here’s video from Metsblog of Tim Byrdak dressed as Hulk Hogan.