Observing a young player like Brandon Nimmo can be like looking at an artist’s painting in its early stages: There’s some good, and some not-so-good.
The rightfielder was 3-for-5 with three RBIs, three runs scored and three doubles - which tied a franchise single-game record - as the Mets finally helped Jacob deGrom to his sixth victory of the season after an 8-0 win against Cincinnati on Wednesday.
Nimmo’s three doubles is the 29th time in Mets history the feat occurred, and the last since Yoenis Cespedes did it on Aug. 3, 2015, at Miami.
“It’s still a work in progress,” said Nimmo, who also struck out twice and is now 17th in the majors with 113 strikeouts in 321 at-bats. “Just trying to trust the process, and not focus too much on the results.”
The results, lately, have been good for the third-year pro. Nimmo is hitting .304 (7-for-23) with a .407 on-base percentage and .609 slugging percentage, five runs scored, a home run and four RBIs in his last seven games.
Nimmo has a .252/.378/.477 slash line this season with 14 home runs and 35 RBIs in 103 games.
Mets manager Mickey Callaway recalled seeing a positive in Nimmo’s 0-for-4 outing in Monday’s 6-4 win.
“[He] hit three balls really, really hard,” Callaway said after Wednesday’s victory. “He’s really trying to snap out of what’s been going on. He’s making some adjustments.
“He saw the ball up and out over the plate, and drove the ball to the opposite field a couple of times for two of [the doubles], and then put a good swing, and turned on one, as well. He’s in a pretty good spot and he’s been working hard.”
The fact that Nimmo puts so much time into becoming a better hitter, and player, is not lost on his teammates.
“You can tell he’s a hard worker. He comes in every day trying to get better, and it shows,” centerfielder Austin Jackson said about Nimmo. “Just going out there, it looks free and easy. He’s capable of putting up some big numbers when he’s relaxed up there and playing his game . . . He’s doing his part and he’s doing it well.”
Nimmo admitted after the game that he had developed “some bad habits” after getting hit by a pitch on his right hand by the Dodgers’ Rich Hill on June 24.
“I’m trying to become a more and more consistent hitter; that’s the goal for every one of us,” Nimmo said. “I’m just hoping as time goes on, the hard work will pay off.”
Although Nimmo is excited about his recent stretch of good play, he knows there’s still more baseball ahead of him, and opportunities to get better.
“I definitely feel good about [Wednesday] but I don’t want to look too much into two good days. I want to keep it going,” Nimmo said. “I still have a lot to work on, so it’s encouraging. But it definitely doesn’t mean the work is finished.”
Like any good artist, always improving his craft.
Sign up for Newsday’s Mets Messages for updates directly to your phone via text, free with a Newsday digital subscription. Learn more at newsday.com/metstext.