The Giants have pushed Davis quickly since making him their third-round pick out of Oregon State in the 2014 MLB Draft, starting him last year at San Jose before he struggled to a .206/.295/.318 and was sent to Class A Augusta to regain his confidence. This year the Giants did the opposite, starting him at Augusta, and he rewarded them by hitting .288/.368/.496 with 29 extra-base-hits, including 17 2Bs and eight HRs. He was called up to San Jose on June 29, where he has continued to find success at High A, though the numbers have come down a bit.
Davis has a quite set-up and holds his hands high, with the barrel on the shoulder and a slightly open stance. He lifts the bat from the shoulder at the same time as he starts a high front-leg lift as a timing mechanism. When he’s got the timing of the pitch, he shows quick hands that will create natural upward lift in his swing. He looks to drive pitches to the middle of the field and has the ability to lift the ball into the gaps. During batting practice I’ve seen some flashes of raw gap-to-gap power with the ability to turn on pitches in as well. Though his swing gets some natural lift, it also gets long while missing on off-speed pitches off the plate. The strikeouts are an issue (204 in 209 career games) and I’ve seen pitchers regularly set him up by throwing the fastball hard in early and challenging him to hit this pitch before having him chase sliders and curveballs on the outer half. This has caused Davis to look for fastballs early and good pitchers have noticed and switched the sequence the second and third times they’ve faced him.
Davis’ big body and thick lower/middle half puts him at a disadvantage defensively, as he is a plodding runner in right field. On the base paths, Davis is a station-to-station type of runner and will need to continue to work on his athleticism to be able to get extra bases. His best attribute in the field is his arm, but he hasn’t been tested in the action that I’ve seen. At Oregon State, he also pitched, and during pregame he has definitely let loose, but his poor speed limits him on defense and puts into question what position he would play at the big league level. I’ve only seen him defensively for a couple games as he normally DH’s, but I hope to put together a full report in the coming weeks after I see him in the field a bit more.