Brandon Nimmo's ability to get on base saw him start the season as the Mets' leadoff hitter, but he's been struggling so much that Mickey Callaway dropped him to eighth in the order Friday night against the Braves, with Jeff McNeil leading off and Amed Rosario hitting second -- Pete Alonso didn't start.
One game doesn't mean he's out of the woods, but a turnaround has to start somewhere, and Nimmo responded with a big night in the Mets' 6-2 win, going 3-for-4 with a two-run homer and a heads-up bunt in the fourth which set up a four-run inning. The homer in the second inning put the Mets up 2-1.
But it was the bunt that had Callaway raving after the game. Keon Broxton led the fourth inning off with a walk, and after Broxton stole second base, Nimmo laid down a bunt with the Braves' defensive setup giving it to him. It was a perfect bunt and Nimmo reaching on a base hit was never in doubt.
That put runners on first and third with no outs. After Zack Wheeler -- who rebounded with a quality two-run, six-inning performance to earn his first win -- popped out, McNeil doubled to right to drive in both baserunners. After Rosario struck out, Robinson Cano and Michael Conforto recorded back-to-back RBI doubles.
"He really needed it," Callaway said of Nimmo's big night. "Just a great, heads-up bunt right there. They're giving it to him, it started a rally and that was part of the game-changer."
Nimmo now has two homers and six RBI this season. He raised his batting average from .150 to .205 and his OPS from .581 to .749.
"It was really nice to have," Nimmo said of his performance. "I'm just glad I was able to help the team out today, and it was in a couple of different ways. So just trying to pass the torch along and I'm glad I was able to help out."