Michael Chavis must make the most of his time with the Red Sox
Thanks to a combination of injuries and much-needed roster moves Michael Chavis once again finds himself back with the Red Sox. The young slugger has been down at the alternate site and now that the MiLB season is underway, the WooSox in Worcester. Many believed that he would be in Alex Cora’s 26-man roster for Opening Day but he lost a long competition to Christian Arroyo and was demoted to Triple-A. Now he has his chance to show that he can be an asset to Cora and be a force in Boston again.
At the time, Chavis didn’t hide his disappointment and I don’t blame him whatsoever. He’s a guy that was called up early in April of 2019 and has been a mainstay in the lineup ever since. Though he burst onto the scene and was a force in his rookie campaign, the rest of the league would soon find his weaknesses and exploit them. Still, a much slimmer Chavis showed up to Fort Meyers this spring ready to fight for his spot. Unfortunately, Chaim Bloom signed several players that play similar positions as The Ice Horse, and they play them better.
Boston’s primary leadoff man Kiké Hernández was recently put onto the 10-day IL due to a strained hamstring and thus the door opens Chavis. There were some that figured he may get swapped with the struggling Bobby Dalbec but the Red Sox are keen on making things work with Bobby D. Losing Kiké is a blessing and a curse as he can be a great weapon in Boston’s arsenal but he also has occasions where he just doesn’t get it done. Staring at a fastball right down Broadway on Wednesday for the final out of the game for one instance.
Hernández will be back in the lineup once he gets his wheel up and running so the window for Chavis is going to close quickly. There aren’t really any other options in the lineup for him to get swapped in for the long-term which makes his future a bit mysterious. This is why he needs to make the most of his second chance with the big club to secure himself a future. We all know that Bloom loves flipping guys that he isn’t sure he has a future for in exchange for prospects that he can build upon.
If The Ice Horse can have a killer 10-day window while he’s up and continue to be strong down in Worcester he may become Chaim’s big trade piece this July. He’s been pretty open about wanting to remain with this organization and on this team but it’s hard to see a future at the moment. There are guys ahead of him that have expiring deals and he could easily find himself back in the fold in 2022, but for a guy who’s already had a serious taste of the Majors will he want to wait that long?
Marwin Gonzalez will be a free agent at the end of this season but if he continues to play as well as he has, especially defensively, I wouldn’t be surprised to see Chaim extend that deal. Hernández won’t be a free agent until 2023 so that door is closed. Arroyo is out of options which pretty much locks him in as the second basemen for the foreseeable future. So there isn’t much in the way of openings for Chavis as far as an easy re-entry into the lineup.
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This is why it’s beyond important for him to absolutely crush it while he’s got this opportunity. If he does well he very well may force Boston’s hand and they won’t be able to send him back to Worcester. Or he increases his value which will make him a big trade piece for Bloom at the deadline and could earn him an everyday slot elsewhere. Cora knows what Chavis is capable of and is optimistic about what he can do while back on the main roster.
"“We know what he can do. I saw it in ‘19,” Cora said. “Obviously the league caught up with him. I do believe he did a good job in spring training knowing the boundaries of his swing. And hopefully, when he gets a chance here, he can do it.”"
It may sound dramatic to some but this recent call-up could make or break Chavis’ future with the Red Sox. He’ll either do so well that they can’t justify sending him back to Worcester and he’ll stay in the Majors or he’ll whiff at every high fastball and will be back in Triple-A before we know it. He could also raise his stock to the point Bloom can get him a promotion with another club for prospects to build toward the future. This will be a big ten days for The Ice Horse and his future and it’s up to him to make the most out of it.