Kevin Long had heard all about Daniel Murphy. When the Mets named Long their hitting coach last fall, he knew that Murphy was a highly intelligent hitter, but also stubborn. Long knew he would have to prove himself worthy of his new pupil’s attention. Honors students can tune out a teacher they do not respect.
“When you talk to Daniel Murphy, you better make sense and you better be able to explain yourself and explain the benefits of why it will help,” Long said. “Otherwise you will lose him.”
As Long spoke on Friday at Citi Field, he wore a hooded sweatshirt with the logo of the 2015 World Series. So it is safe to say he did not lose Murphy. The Mets rode Murphy’s bat — and the pinpoint command of their rotation — to their fifth National League pennant.