L.J. Mazzilli isn’t exactly on the precipice of Ducks history, but he’s in the ballpark. The 30-year old outfielder had hit in 19-straight games entering Wednesday night’s matchup with the West Virginia Power at Fairfield Properties Ballpark in Central Islip, six short of tying the franchise record, 25, set by Mel Stocker in 2006.
Mazzilli, whose father is former Met and Yankee Lee Mazzilli, missed about a week early in the season with leg tightness. Once that passed, he hit the ground running.
"I came back and really wanted to focus every single at-bat and try to not give away a pitch," Mazzilli said. "That's a lot easier said than done. I’ve definitely given away pitches and maybe at-bats along the way, but I think what most of that comes down to is I’m really trying to focus on every at-bat, every pitch, trying to put together something good, either a walk or a hard ball in play, and I’ve been getting hits."
During the streak, Mazzilli is batting .365 with two doubles, a home run, and 19 RBIs.
"He’s been pretty consistent," Ducks manager Wally Backman said. "I don’t think during that streak he’s had any big games, maybe a couple. But, he’s been consistently getting hits. You have to tip your hat. That’s not easy to do."
Backman continued: "He’s a complete player. He’s got a little bit of power. He’s got some speed. He’s had a couple leg injuries this year, but he’s a very good leftfielder — best in this league, by far."
Ducks pitcher Brendan Feldmann was determined to be ‘fine’ after a precautionary trip to the doctor, Backman said. The righty got ‘exhausted’ in two of his last three starts, a June 29 outing in Lancaster where he allowed 13 runs in 1 2/3 innings and last Saturday in York where he allowed five runs in three innings.
"He was dizzy and lightheaded, so we sent him to the doctor," Backman said. "…He’s cleared and he says he feels a lot better."
Feldmann, who is 1-1 with a 6.98 ERA in eight starts, is scheduled to make his next start on Friday, the Ducks said.
Backman on ESPN?
Backman said he was interviewed last summer at his motor home along the coast of Oregon for ESPN’s new ’30 for 30’ film documenting the 1986 Mets, ‘Once Upon a Time in Queens.’ The trailer for the four-part series, set to debut in September, was released this week.
"They were there for three hours," Backman said. "I don’t know how much they used on film, but I thought it was pretty good."