The Mets made a highly intriguing first round draft pick in 2011 when they took a high school player…
Nimmo Shows Vast Improvement
The Cyclones are currently second in the McNamara division, and only a game out of first behind the Hudson Valley Renegades. The team is poised for the playoffs but the second place spot still rankles Nimmo - he wants more.
"You know you want to be in first obviously," Nimmo said. "We're not where we want to be, but we're still leading the wild card. Our pitching is absolutely amazing so if we can heat up our hitting, we'll be pretty lethal."
As far as hitting goes, Nimmo has been doing his part and more to get the collective bats hot. His weak june and mild July have given way to an incredible August where the centerfielder has shown no signs of slowing down.
His .442 average in the Cyclones' last 10 games speaks for itself. Several factors went into this turn of form for Nimmo, which coach Malek has said started back in early July.
"Brandon had two nice stretches," Malek said of the beginnings of Nimmo's turnaround. "In early July we went on the road and you could see the weight lift off his shoulders. He was hitting the ball on the barrel, it was impressive.
"But we came home and he struggled a bit, however, he got hot again on the Mahoning Valley trip and ever since then he's been lights out."
According to Nimmo, his growth has been more mental than physical, with a great deal of help coming from manager Rich Donnelly.
"Rich has helped me a lot with the mental part of the game," Nimmo said with admiration. "He will just sit me down on one of our bus rides and ask me what I'm thinking, what's going on in my head. We figure things out that way.
"The biggest things are mentally getting ready for the majors and getting more experience. The more you play at this level, the more you're gonna become accustomed to it and it's going to slow down for you."
On his training with Nimmo, Donnelly recalled one of the insightful conversations the two shared on their many trips this summer. Donnelly's parable came from an analogy on fishing.
"Say you go to a lake for a week and you don't catch any fish. What do you think you should do? Change the bait or change the lake?" Donnelly recalled asking Nimmo. "He said change the lake.
"It's time for you to change lakes, because your way is not working; your way of trying to get on base by a walk is working but it's not working."
Donnelly continued to describe Nimmo's pitfalls as the small flaws of an otherwise great young talent.
"He's got a great eye out there. He can spot a pitch that's this far out," Donnelly gestured making a small space between his thumb and forefinger. "We want him to go out there and drive those pitches because he can."
Nimmo is a specimen of physical prowess, delivering powerful doubles to the wall in left when he makes contact. Over the season he has adjusted his swing and posture with the help of coach Malek in order to maximize on his full potential.
"He's getting down to the ball a bit more, using his backside more efficiently, Malek said." "Once we got him to swing through the ball, shorten up his swing and get his back hip motion working, he just took off."
On Nimmo's improvement since he's come to the Cyclones, Malek had nothing but praise to offer.
"Brandon's the biggest improvement guy since when I saw him in Instructional League last year to where he is now. It's really something," Malek gushed. "You knew he had the talent and just the way he has matured for such a young kid is really good to see."
According to Coach Donnelly, Nimmo's greatest improvement has come in his new plate mindset of selective pitch taking. He has learned that before two strikes, he needs to sit on the fastball and then to protect with two strikes. Donnelly cites this reason as one of the biggest reasons for Nimmo's improvement as a hitter.
So where does Nimmo go from here, for the rest of the season? He remains as humble as he was on day one, and regales us all with his simplicity.
"I just want to go out and have fun, play hard and have a great last month. I want to give it my all and have something that I can take away and say I gave it my best.
"The last thing I want to do now is over analyzing things, I'm saving that for the offseason when I can reflect on what worked and what didn't work. So for now, let's just try to stay in the wild card and move to first place," Nimmo laughed.
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