After a sluggish start, the Boston Red Sox have a lot of reasons to be excited and they start with rookie prospect Michael Chavis
Let’s face it, the Boston Red Sox have severely underperformed this season. Prior to the boys from Beantown’s last game, they were 15 – 18 and 6.5 games behind the 1st place Tampa Bay Rays. The team has been decimated by players also not able to stay healthy in addition to a pitching staff that started the season not able to get out of the 4th inning.
One of the biggest problems has been Chris Sale, who before his latest start had started the season 0-5 in 6 starts and we hadn’t even hit May yet. Mind you, he finished with only 4 losses in all of 2018. A bit of an issue if you’re the Ace of the defending World Series Champions. There had to be some bit of good news right? Wrong. The entire team looked lost with the lone exception being Mitch Moreland aka “Mitchy-Four-Bags” and JD Martinez.
Quite a few players that were superstars in 2018 have been rather quiet. Now, as of late, they’ve been heating up. The good looks from Mookie Betts & Xander Bogaerts are definitely nice. Even Rafael Devers smacked his first home run recently. Things look to be turning around. Guys who were getting rocked are going eight strong innings, that’s right, I’m talking to you, Rick Porcello. Betts on April 17th was hitting an ugly .200 and has since raised his average to .293.
Devers didn’t get his first run knocked in until April 11th. In fact, in all of April, the young 3rd baseman had only had 8 RBI’s. So far through four games, he’s got one home run and six runs knocked in. If this is any sign of things to turn, we’ll welcome them with open arms. Porcello started the season 0 – 3 with an ERA of 8.47. Over his last two starts which both registered as quality starts, his ERA has dropped almost three full points to 5.52 after six starts. Porcello also won both games.
The dawn of a New Era
What could make the team more exciting? Another Sox youngster to show up and make a strong first impression. Insert Michael Chavis here. Yes, he’s fun to watch hit as his first major league hit registered as a double in Tampa that went a cool 400 feet. Yes, Chavy smoked that shot and he was only beginning. As a Sox fan, we’re getting spoiled, as a fan of baseball, you can’t help but be excited for the kid who is just 23 years old.
Through 14 big league games, Chavis has six long balls and 13 runs knocked in and is hitting a whopping .354. With Eduardo Nunez still trying to figure things out in the infield, Brock Holt still not back yet, and the same with Dustin Pedroia, what are the Sox to do with the guy that can do no wrong? Why are we excited and extremely hopeful that he stays at the show? Chavis is hitting over .350, Pedroia is hitting .100, just two hits in 20 at-bats. Nunez is down to .160, with just 8 hits in 50 at-bats. Holt has just one hit in 16 at-bats, good enough for a .063 batting average.
More from Red Sox News
- Bizarre trade deadline comes back to haunt Red Sox after Nathan Eovaldi departure
- Red Sox’ Moneyball-style offseason continues with Corey Kluber contract
- Rich Hill’s Red Sox departure puts him within striking distance of unique MLB record
- Red Sox offseason takes another nasty hit with Nathan Eovaldi departure
- Why Red Sox fans should be rooting for Carlos Correa’s Mets deal to go through
What makes things worse? Pedroia has three hits spanning the last two seasons. Nunez and Chavis have each committed two errors in 2019. The young rookie is the better option as he has the chance to make us forget about his oops by sending a ball far into the distance with the opportunity to send it out of orbit. Can Chavis make us forget about Pedey though? One thing is for sure, there is no way that Chavis is headed down to Pawtucket anytime soon.
Chavis has tied the record for most home runs through 14 games as a member of the Red Sox. This man simply can do no wrong. Defensively, he can’t be worse than Devers. Devers has committed 9 errors so far in 2019 and we’re not even halfway through May. Nervous? Yes. Upset? Certainly. Disappointed? You betcha! Devers has got to be better and more efficient at the hot corner or he’ll find himself learning a new position. Perhaps as the new DH shifting Martinez out of that role and permanently in the outfield.
One person who doesn’t look like himself at all is Jackie Bradley Jr. How bad has it gotten for him? He’s slashing .149/0/3/5 with 14 hits and only 3 extra base hits in 94 at-bats. JBJ is also striking out in 34% of his at-bats, an ugly number for someone that is not bringing anything to the table offensively. Known mostly for his glove, JBJ has become a liability, one the Sox may not be dealing with for much longer. Tzu-Wei Lin has been brought up and made his 2nd career start in Center Field. Yikes, if that’s not raising a warning sign, I don’t know what does.
Can Chavis play in the outfield? He can certainly play 2nd base and 3rd base with no issues. With Devers still manning 3rd base, for now, Chavis looks to be the 2nd baseman until further notice which begs the question, what do the Red Sox do with Pedroia when he’s back? It’ll certainly be an interesting situation, one predicament I would not want to be in if I was Sox Skipper Alex Cora. What do you think will happen?