The kid looked extremely anxious at the plate early, and understandably so. The expectations are huge for Travis d’Arnaud, and even if the plan is for him to start the season in Triple-A, the 24-year-old catcher has to be feeling some pressure as he tries to impress his new ballclub.
So he struck out four times in his first seven at-bats in games, including an intrasquad game, mostly because he was chasing pitches out of the strike zone. But then d’Arnaud turned on an inside fastball in his final at-bat Monday night, rocketing a single to left with a short, quick stroke.
He followed that up on Tuesday with a single and bases-loaded sacrifice fly in two at-bats and suddenly you could see what all the fuss is about. The Mets coaches say they’ve been seeing it since spring training began.

“He’s got some lightning in those hands,’’ third base coach Tim Teufel said Tuesday. “The ball really jumps off his bat.’’
That’s why the Mets traded their Cy Young winner, R.A. Dickey, to the Blue Jays for d’Arnaud, because they believe his bat will make him an All-Star catcher for years to come, with scouts projecting that he’ll be a 20-plus home run guy who will hit for a high average.
Ask Terry Collins about d’Arnaud’s potential and his eyes light up. “Oh my,’’ was his first response. “You can see what everybody’s talking about. He’s very athletic behind the plate and as a hitter he has the quick hands. He’s not a real big guy but you can see where the power comes from. He has real good bat speed. He can get to that ball inside — you saw that (Monday) night.”


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