New York Mets: Pete Alonso Will Bounce Back In 2021
New York Mets first baseman Pete Alonso had a rookie season for the ages back in 2019. Alonso hit 53 home runs that year. That became a new rookie record, breaking New York Yankees outfielder Aaron Judge’s 52 home runs in 2017.
Last season in his sophomore year, Alonso’s overall production tailed off a bit. He only hit .231 which was a drop off from the .260 batting average he hit the year before. He hit 16 home runs in 57 games in the pandemic shortened year.
Many considered 2020 a disappointing year for Polar Bear Pete after exceeding everyone’s expectations in his dream rookie season. In a way it was. The power was still there especially towards the end of the year in September when he hit double digit home runs that month.
But his hitting approach in 2020 wasn’t what it was in 2019. Alonso was more jittery at the plate and swung at more pitches outside the strike zone. Maybe his slow start got to him but there were many times when he looked lost at the plate.
In his rookie season, Alonso was a little more patient at the plate and walked more. He was also not trying to pull every pitch out of the yard, Last season he was pressing more and seemed like he was always trying to pull every pitch.
So far this year in Spring Training, Pete looks like a different hitter than what he was last season. I know it’s only Spring Training but sometimes a player’s performance there can lead to how they do in the regular season. If Alonso can hit in the regular season like he’s doing now, he will have a monstrous season. Maybe even better than his rookie season.
So far during 12 games in Spring Training, Alonso is hitting .400 with three home runs, five doubles and 11 RBIs. He looks like a much different hitter at the plate. Alonso has been more selective at the plate and is swinging less at pitches outside of the strike zone. He seems like he knows what he’s doing more in each at bat. And he’s been having fun again as evidenced by the emotion he shows in the dugout.
Of course that has to translate in the regular season. But Alonso has always been a determined player. He is a hard worker and is always willing to be a better hitter and player.
Alonso is aware of the season he had in 2020 and how it might’ve affected the Mets playoff chances in a negative way. He seemed frustrated a lot at times and so it looks like he is vowing to bounce back and have a much better year.
Also the first base job is no guarantee for him with Dom Smith emerging. Although Alonso and Smith are good friends, perhaps this could also motivate Pete to be a better first baseman as well.
The Mets have improved their lineup with the addition of Francisco Lindor. They also have Michael Conforto, Dom Smith, Jeff McNeil, Brandon Nimmo, etc. But Pete Alonso is still one of their most important hitters in the lineup and their biggest power threat.
Even if he may not reach 50 home runs, hitting 40 or even 30 home runs and improving his average to at least .270, would definitely be a big boost. It would provide more stability in the middle of the lineup and it would benefit other hitters as well.
Polar Bear Pete will be back and hacking again in the MLB season in 2021.
What do you think? Do you think Pete ALons will have a bounceback year? Leave your comments below.
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