Just thinking about watching Ike Davis' feeble attempt to simply make contact with a curveball makes my stomach churn. But after nearly a month in Las Vegas with Wally Backman and his staff, I believe Davis is capable of bouncing back over the last three months of the season.
We won't know what exactly it was that the Las Vegas coaching staff did with Ike until he makes his return against the Milwaukee Brewers tonight, but the first baseman's job will undoubtedly be in jeopardy if it is not clear that his demotion paid dividends for his production.
Davis was awful throughout the first half of last season and was even more unwatchable through the first two-plus months of 2013. As we all know, though, he finished exceptionally strong last year to bring his final line to a .227 batting average, 32 home runs and 90 RBI.
If Davis can show some inkling of productivity, he should be able to get in a groove with the likes of David Wright, Daniel Murphy and Marlon Byrd surrounding him in the lineup. That is not quite Murderers' Row, but there will be runs to drive in.
Prior to his call-up, Davis was hitting .293 with seven homers, seven doubles, 13 RBI and a near one-to-one strikeout to walk ratio with Triple-A Las Vegas. Look for him to get going fast, because it will be a slipper slope if he does not.