Unfortunately for me, picking Captain Kirk means that I'm going to have to spell his name a lot. We'll consider it a learning experience. And hey, he definitely has been the biggest surprise of the young season.
When Andres Torres went down with an injury on Opening Day, Nieuwenhuis, who just missed out on making the team out of Spring Training, was the man who got the call to be the everyday center fielder.
In what would be a make or break stint in the majors, Kirk shined. Now, he is likely to be a mainstay in Flushing all season.
The guy has done it all for the Amazin's in his short time in the big leagues. He is batting .325 with two home runs and eight RBI's, and he even hit the first ever opposite field home run for a left handed hitter in Citi Field.
Nieuwenhuis was called on to be the leadoff hitter for the Mets and he has excelled there, with 10 hits in only seven games.
Captain Kirk even has two game winning at bats to his credit, one off of Buster Posey's throwing error and a walkoff single to sweep the Miami Marlins.
In the field, Nieuwnhuis has been nothing short of spectacular, making highlight reel catch after highlight reel catch, with his most recent one stealing an RBI from Jonathan Herrera. With the questionable fielding skills of Lucas Duda, Scott Hairston, and Mike Baxter in the outfield, Kirk's steady hand has been much needed in center.
What impressed me most about Nieuwenhuis was with how much poise he handles failure.
On April 21st, Nieuwenhuis overran a simple pop up that should have ended the game and given the Mets the win. Instead, the error allowed the Giants to tie the game and send it into the bottom of the ninth.
Not only did Nieuwenhuis have the game winning at bat in that game, he also accepted full responsibility for his mistake and moved on from it. No pointing fingers, no excuses, no moping. He went 2-for-4 with a double in his next game.
That is the kind of personality that endears you to fans and keeps you in the majors for a long, long time.
Ruben Tejada: We all knew the glove would be there (.979 fielding percentage) but who expected the .299 batting average? Jose who?
Johan Santana: Yes, he may be technically 0-2 and he got shelled by Atlanta, but coming off of a major injury, no one knew what to expect from Johan. He has delivered ace-like stuff so far. The wins will come.
Josh Thole: Not only has his play behind the plate greatly improved, but he is hitting .322, featuring a ten game hitting streak. Who knew he had it in him?