There’s a noticeable trend that takes place every year a veteran team with high expectations endures a long stretch of mediocre play.
That trend is typically a top prospect comes up and immediately lights a fire under the team, thus leading to a shift in on-field performance.
That has definitely seemed to happen with the Boston Red Sox, as top prospect Michael Chavis has come up and become a vital fixture in the lineup through his first 11 games at the Major League level. It’s an 11-game stretch that saw the rookie slash .314/.442/.600 with three home runs, and eight runs batted in.
Chavis has also shown some versatility early on, having played games at second base, third base, and also one at first base –– and has looked rather sharp on the defensive side of the ball as well, committing just one error and being a part of seven turned double plays in 11 games.
But what really shouldn’t go unnoticed is the fact that the Red Sox have played their best baseball of the season since the Marietta, GA native has been promoted to the MLB. In 12 games since his call-up, they have gone 8-5 (.615), including 7-5 (.583) in games he’s played in.
But of course, that could just be coincidental, right? I mean, the Red Sox are a team loaded with talent. It was only a matter of time before they righted the ship, right?
Possibly. But the proof is in the pudding when it comes to looking at the sudden jolt in offensive production since Chavis has been a part of this roster.
In the 12 games that feature Michael Chavis, the Red Sox are averaging 5.17 runs per game. In 20 games without Chavis, the offense averaged just 4.15 runs per game. So in adding the 23-year-old, the Red Sox offense has improved by over one run per game.
It’s evident that this team turned a corner the moment fresh blood was introduced to the Red Sox clubhouse. Even though Dustin Pedroia is on a rehab assignment, and should return soon, there’s no reason for Michael Chavis to be sent back down to Pawtucket. The dude has already shown he is a game-changer on both sides of the ball and has really emerged as an early American League Rookie of the Year candidate. To option him, even for a guy like Pedroia, would just be unintelligent on the Red Sox part –– especially having seen the way this team has responded to him just being in the lineup.