With a 3 for 5 game against the New York Mets in the series opener in Citi Field last night, Daniel Murphy improved to 41 for 104 (.394/.434/.712) with seven doubles, a triple, eight home runs, eight walks and 15 Ks in 116 plate appearances against the team that drafted and developed him then allowed him to leave via free agency.
Murphy, of course, signed a 3-year/$37.5M free agent deal with New York’s NL East rivals from Washington, and he’s made the Mets pay for it since, reaching base in all twenty-six games against his former team since joining the Nationals.
As he was piling up hits in his first season outside of the Mets’ organization, Terry Collins told reporters he understood Murphy’s motivation.
"We've seen it, and as you know he's pumped up to play against us and show us we made a mistake," Collins told reporters.
"It's human nature and it's part of the game, and we've just got to make better pitches. We're giving him balls to hit.”
Dusty Baker told reporters last night that whatever motivation Murphy has, he just hopes that it continues.
“I’m hoping he’s fueled the rest of his career, you know what I mean,” Baker said, “and whatever he needs to fuel him, he’ll probably say no, but I was in his position a couple times, and it was big what Murphy has done here, he’s sort of quieted the boos, early they’d boo him, but it wasn’t his fault, but hey, I’m glad we got him.”
In 903 games and 3,619 PAs with the Mets, Murphy put up a .288/.331/.424 line with 228 doubles and 62 home runs.
In 203 games and 849 PAs for the Nationals, the left-handed hitting second baseman has a .346/.390/.585 line, 64 doubles and 36 HRs.
He’ll play his 15th game in Citi Field as a member of the opposition tonight, and try to improve on his .351 AVG there over the last two seasons.