J.D. Davis had a strong chance of making the Mets' 25-man roster when Spring Training began. Now, he might have a strong chance to be in the Opening Day lineup.
Due to injuries to Todd Frazier and Jed Lowrie -- with both uncertain for Opening Day -- and the status of T.J. Rivera's surgically-repaired elbow, Davis may be thrust into a starting role to start the season -- either at third base or first base.
"J.D. is a versatile offensive talent," Mets GM Brodie Van Wagenen said in a statement after acquiring Davis from the Astros earlier this offseason. "He's young, had success against lefties and he'll provide depth at the corner positions."
And while the 25-year-old Davis has struggled in the majors -- hitting just .194/.260/.321 in 66 big league games spanning 2017 and 2018 -- a Texas-area scout recently spoke highly of him to MetsBlog's Matthew Cerrone.
"The loop is gone," the scout recently told Cerrone. "So, he can survive in the big leagues. He's always had plus-plus raw power, but he's probably best suited being a corner outfielder. He also has a cannon for an arm."
Cerrone, who noted that Davis was specifically targeted by new front office additions Allard Baird and Adam Guttridge, also spoke with a current Astros coach about Davis.
"Listen, don't sleep on his potential to be a serious power threat from the right side," the coach said. "He's a big kid, very strong, very solid in the box. It's time for him to turn a corner and -- if he does -- I can see him becoming like a right-handed Lucas Duda."
Before Mets fans scoff at the "right-handed Lucas Duda" comparison, it should be noted that Duda hit .246/.343/.457 with 125 homers in parts of eight seasons with the Mets.
Davis is hitting .286 with one homer in 14 at-bats so far during Spring Training.
What Davis will be remains a mystery, but if Frazier and/or Lowrie aren't ready by Opening Day and Jeff McNeil remains in the outfield, Mets fans could get an immediate look at Davis in a regular role -- potentially at third base, with Pete Alonso across the diamond at first base.