Evaluating the 2019 season of Boston Red Sox rookie infielder Michael Chavis and assigning a grade based on how his production lived up to expectations.
Michael Chavis certainly made a name for himself in his first season in the majors. After his call-up back in mid-April, Chavis fit right in with the Boston Red Sox and made it clear to everyone that he was ready to stay and play at this level.
In a year where the Red Sox had plenty of injury problems at first and second base, Chavis’ adaptability became vital for the majority of the year as he filled in all around the infield.
Chavis appeared in 95 games during his first MLB season. He instantly became a fan favorite – receiving the nickname ‘Ice Horse’ from the Section 10 Podcast hosts, which fans adopted.
The rookie infielder was quick to make an impact on this side. He doubled on his first career at-bat in Tampa and never looked back. Chavis finished his rookie year with 18 home runs, 58 RBI and a slash line of .254/.322/.444.
Early on he was definitely in contention for AL Rookie of the Year. He won the AL Rookie of the Month award for May and continued to perform well for during the remainder of the year. The only real negative from his first season in the majors was his strikeout rate. Chavis finished with 127 strikeouts on the year, second behind only Eloy Jimenez of the Chicago White Sox among AL rookies. However, this is a number that he can control over time.
In early August, Chavis did go to the Injured List with left AC joint sprain, and he didn’t make another major league appearance in the fallout. On the whole, Chavis had a terrific rookie campaign and his promising power swing certainly lived up to expectations. Chavis’ many times where he went deep over the monster will be amongst the defining moments of 2019.
Chavis probably came up to the Sox a lot sooner than most people anticipated. Primarily considered a third baseman, the Sox were pretty set with Rafael Devers, and rightly so after the season that he had. However, with Steve Pearce going down early and Dustin Pedroia out for the foreseeable future, there were plenty of holes to fill in around the Red Sox infield.
Bringing up Chavis in April gave the Sox more depth and, ultimately, gave Chavis no choice but to get down to work early on. It was amazing to see Chavis keep on delivering at the plate. If Chavis’ discipline at the plate was better, he’d be in consideration for ROTY.
With the Red Sox on the brink of a new era, Chavis could play a big role in the future of this ballclub. After a reshuffling of management and coaching, there are going to be plenty of changes in terms of personnel. Chavis’ ability and his adaptability will allow for the Sox to have options at all three bases. Wherever he is on that diamond, Chavis’ bat will be an important weapon to have in that lineup.
Whether the Sox decide to trade for any big players, next season, Chavis should be safe. After trading so many pieces of the farm, over the years, it wouldn’t be the best thing to get rid of any promising prospects. Chavis is one of these, and his ability to perform at the major league level effectively, over this past year, shows that he’s what you need a prospect to be like. Chavis has been an impact from the off, and hopefully, he’ll be able to continue to do so next year.