Daniel Murphy: A Sleeping Stud for the New York Mets

Eric SalomonContributor IMarch 17, 2009

The New York Mets' offense was noticeably anemic today in their spring training game against the Atlanta Braves. In their defense, most of the offensive stars are either playing in the World Baseball Classic or did not make the trip to Orlando.

One player, however, had a stellar day at the plate, going 3-for-4, missing a perfect day at the plate in his last at-bat. Daniel Murphy, who played 49 games last season for the Mets, has all but secured the starting left fielder's job. Earlier this spring, Jerry Manuel decided not to platoon him with Fernando Tatis, instead deciding to make Murphy the outright starter.

Murphy seems to be buying into Manuel's new batting drills, which encourage players to aim toward the opposite field. One of Murphy's hits today was to left-center field, and another was straight up the middle. 

Murphy leads Met players who have played in at least 10 Spring Training games with a .400 average, 45 at-bats, and 18 hits. 

The 24-year-old Murphy was a star in the latter half of last season, earning a .314 batting average, scoring 24 runs, and driving in 17.

He is also an excellent fielder and has added value as a left-handed hitter.