Oct 4, 2015; Baltimore, MD, USA; Baltimore Orioles first baseman Chris Davis (19) hits a two run home run during the eighth inning against the New York Yankees at Oriole Park at Camden Yards. The Orioles won 9-4. Mandatory Credit: Tommy Gilligan-USA TODAY Sports
The best thing about Chris Davis is he provides that one element that is prime rib to any Red Sox fan – the long ball. Red Sox fans lust for the Earl Weaver three run shot. There is already a preponderance of stories relaying the need for addition “punch” and that punch is translated as the tiny white sphere exiting the ball back like a Corvette hitting third gear.
Davis is the foremost practitioner of the art of the long ball in the American League. Davis led the league and MLB with 47 home runs. In 2013 he led baseball with 53 home runs. So Davis will hit the Big One and it is reflected in an OPS that came in at .923. With home runs comes (hopefully) RBI totals and Davis will not disappoint. The man is a classic left-handed power hitter who at age 30 in March should have some prime years ahead.
With power often comes a downside and in this instanced it is reflected in the letter “K” that is baseballese for a strike out. Davis exceeded the magical 200 barrier (208) in 2015 and that is noteworthy since it does mean LOB or Left On Base. Davis is also a career .255 hitter who never has even come within hailing distance of .300, so don’t expect any batting titles.
Davis is respectable with the glove (UZR/150) of 5.7 or second place among AL qualifiers. Davis will also require much cash since this is his one chance of a significant payout and he will get it somewhere and somewhere I hope is south or west of Boston.
The Red Sox have the “Hanley Problem” to address and that means his latest destination is first base. The Red Sox have a huge payroll commitment to Hanley and unless they are willing to say “dead Money” or find an intoxicated GM elsewhere they are stuck. The Red Sox also have in their employ Travis Shaw, who certainly got attention in his 65 games in Boston.
The DH option is set for 2016 with David Ortiz and if history is an indicator we will be entertained by a Papi payroll uprising sometime in 2016. And do not discount fast rising 22-year-old Sam Travis who will hone his skills at Pawtucket.
For my playing of GM I would pass on Davis. Money best spent elsewhere.