In 2008 Chris Davis came up from Triple A for 317 plate appearance with the Texas Rangers. In that time he hit .285/.331/.549 with a K:BB of 88:20. Davis was hitting home runs at an average of once every 18 at bats in the bigs and was positioned for a huge breakout year in 2009. Baseball Prospectus listed his comparables as Justin Morneau, Lee Stevens, James Loney, and David Ortiz in their 2010 annual publication. This is not bad company.
But in 2009 and the start of 2010 Davis hasn’t hit at all for the big league team. A .238/.284/.442 line in 2009 is buoyed by his .308/.338/.496 compilation after the slugger returned from a minor league vacation. Again, a strong finish, yet his 2010 season has been a month of sorrow: .188/.264/.292. And back to the minors he goes.
Justin Smoak meanwhile was mashing Double A to the tune of .328/.449/.481 before cooling down after a Triple A promotion (.244/.363/.360). Being described as “a switch-hitting version of Justin Morneau with better defense” by Baseball Prospectus’s team of experts means Chris Davis could face a long minor league exile if Smoak adjusts to the big leagues faster than his predecessor.
If he’s available in your fantasy league, grab him now. If you have Davis already, even better.
Terrible start to the year. Everything has gone wrong: pitching, defense, and offense as well as health (Jacoby Ellsbury and Mike Cameron). With Cameron heading to the DL, this is what I’d like to see:
- Keep Jeremy Hermida in left and put Josh Reddick in center
- When Ellsbury returns, he takes over left field and Hermida slides into the DH role.
This lets the Red Sox take their time with Ortiz/Lowell DH “platoon” and gives Reddick an extended look in the majors. Maybe he boosts his trade value or, if Cameron can’t make it back quickly, he forces himself into the lineup and lets the Sox part with Ortiz/Lowell without worrying about losing what could be dead money.
The pitching will improve. The defense hasn’t been that bad outside of the running game (23 of 24 base stealers have succeeded) and the offense could take care of itself if Hermida can live up to his potential.
Over at Sports of Boston our team of experts have released some predictions about how the season will turn out. I’m hoping the Braves have a big year to back up my confidence in them.