Daniel Murphy has turned his paternity leave issue a non-issue upon his return to the lineup.
The New York media had a field day at Murphy’s expense after the second baseman opted to spend time with his wife following the birth of their first child, he’s proven that two days off hasn’t affected his play.
After missing the first two games of the season, he’s hit safely in all three games he’s played and following today’s 1-for-4 performance in a 6-3 Mets win, is hitting .364 on the young season.
At the time of this whole paternity leave debacle, neither the Mets nor Yankees had won a game, so maybe it was just something to fill the airwaves but it certainly didn’t seem to bother Murphy, as he said, “My wife and I discussed it, and we felt the best thing for our family was for me to try to stay for an extra day — that being Wednesday — due to the fact that she can’t travel for two weeks (because of a C-section).”
According to the MLBPA’s 2011 Collective Bargaining Agreement, Murphy — and any other player — is allowed 1-3 days off for paternity leave. Here’s a click-through of the CBA in place for 2012-2016 (scroll down to page 70).
Without Murphy in the lineup, the Mets were 0-2. With him, they’re 2-1. Coincidence? Probably not.
In 2013, Murphy was third among MLB second basemen in hits (188), fifth in batting average (.286), top ten in both home runs (13) and runs batted in (78), and fourth in steals (23). To say he’s one of the best in baseball at his position is a fair assessment.
He’s certainly talented enough to succeed but it’s hard to imagine he’s not using this whole situation to fuel his fire a little to prove the hater’s wrong — and by hater’s, we’re obviously talking about the out of touch talking heads in the New York media.
(One member of the media has since apologized.)