Red Sox infielder Sam Travis clears waivers and will join PawSox
Boston Red Sox infielder Sam Travis officially cleared waivers on Thursday and will be heading to Pawtucket to start off the 2020 season.
In an otherwise silent offseason, the Red Sox got a small amount of good news on Thursday. Sam Travis, who was recently designated for assignment, officially cleared waivers today and will be returning to the Boston farm system. The infielder will be kicking off his 2020 season with the Triple-A PawSox as he works to make it back to the 40-man roster.
Travis has spent portions of the last three seasons on the main roster and was a big part of the lineup towards the end of 2019. Though he may not be as flashy on the basepaths as some of his teammates, he is a reliable player to have on the roster.
Unfortunately, he had a scare late in the season as he was hit in the head while making his way to third and appeared to be knocked out. He would wake up relatively quickly and be pulled from the game for safety reasons.
The Red Sox had to DFA Travis in order to make room for newly signed backup catcher Kevin Plawecki. It was a risky move on their behalf as he’s out of options and could’ve easily been picked up by any other squad. At only 26-years-old and garnering a salary just over $550K in 2019, he’s a prime pick-up for a team needing an infielder on the cheap.
I don’t imagine that Travis will be stuck in Triple-A for too long but that’ll all depend on how Michael Chavis and Bobby Dalbec perform at first base. Chavis is a lock to be on the 40-man and will most likely get the call to fill the vacancy at first but can easily take over second base. Dalbec has yet to get any real reps in the big leagues but has the hype behind him to make a splash and earn a spot in Spring Training.
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If either of them has any injury scares or hits a slump then we very well may see Shaw back at Fenway Park. With the fact that Chavis had some big injuries to end his 2019 campaign, we may see Travis called up early into 2020. Though he’s known primarily as a first baseman he has also played in the outfield for manager Alex Cora. He has a bit of utilityman in him and with Brock Holt no longer on the team, that could be a route that gets him back to the Majors in a hurry.
Travis’ numbers weren’t earth-shattering in 2019 but for the time he spent with the Red Sox they were formidable and got the job done. He finished with a .215/.274/.382/.656 with 6 homers, 4 doubles, and 16 RBI. Again, not Hall of Fame caliber stuff from the first baseman but it got the job done for Boston.
If he can get more consistent reps and get in some more time in the starting lineup, then those numbers can climb. We all know that more playing time tends to benefit the player as it’ll allow them to get into a solid rhythm. Even if Travis has to spend some time in Pawtucket it’ll still help him get into his groove and be better prepared if the Red Sox make the call.
With Sam Travis clearing waivers today that gives the Red Sox another weapon incase their infield catches the injury bug. His versatility, age, and salary are a massive plus for the Boston front office as he checks each box. If he can have a strong Spring Training and a hot start for the PawSox then I can see him back on the 40-man roster in no-time.