Lucas Duda was Daniel Murphy before Daniel Murphy was Daniel Murphy. When New York Mets first baseman, Luca Duda, hit a three run homer in the first inning of game 4 of the NLCS vs. the Chicago Cubs it was his first homerun in the previous 12 games played. That is combining the post season and the last 4 games of the regular season. Duda, by all accounts, appears to be one of the streakiest hitters in Met history; Daniel Murphy’s current hitting stretch notwithstanding. What Daniel Murphy is doing right now in the playoffs is unprecedented in MLB history. Duda had similar streaks during the regular season.
Lucas Duda is the quiet mild mannered first baseman on the Mets that we don’t hear much about. In a lot of ways he has become the forgotten man on this Met team. We are all very aware of the red hot hitting of Yoenis Cespedes that carried the Mets in August. Curtis Granderson spent a good portion of the season as the only consistent homerun threat in the Met lineup and he was batting leadoff. The entire world is aware of what Daniel Murphy is currently hitting in the playoffs. Duda had been the forgotten man up until his homerun in the final game of the sweep vs the Cubs in the NLCS. Duda can be very easy to forget. He is prone to very long periods of time where he does not hit at all. The 12 game homer drought that I referenced earlier is a good example. The good news is that Duda is also prone to incredible hot streaks. He had three such streaks in 2015 during the regular season.
From May 21st to May 29th Duda had an incredible week of hitting. In 7 games he went 9 for 25 with 6 homeruns and 9 RBI’s. That sounds very much like what Murphy is doing now. What surprised me about that hot week of hitting in May for Duda is he did it again in late July! From July 25th to August 2nd, an eight game stretch, Duda went 11 for 28 with 7 homeruns and 12 RBI’s. At that point you figure that Duda is done with the hot streaks. No folks he was not done yet. In 3 games from September 25th to the 27th Duda had a mini hitting streak where he went 6 for 12 with 5 homeruns and 13 RBI’s. Lucas Duda hit 27 homeruns in 2015. 18 of those homeruns came in the 18 games that I just described. If that is not the definition of a “streaky hitter” then I don’t know what is.
It is also worth noting that following the May streak Duda went 16 games before homering again. Following the late July streak Duda went another 19 games before reaching the seats. When Duda is good he is great. When he is not you just have to wait until he is good again. Met fans can only dream of what next week in the World Series will bring if Lucas Duda is about to go on another hitting rampage along with Murphy. If Duda heats up you can start making your plans for a parade. Every Duda has his day and the Mets are closing in on theirs.