Since joining Michael Kopech (RHP, White Sox) as a Day One selection for Boston in the 2014 MLB Draft, Chavis has struggled to establish himself in the prospect world. Despite entering the draft as one of the more highly regarded bats at the high school ranks, Chavis has struggled mightily in pro ball, failing to post an OPS over .685 in his two full seasons of pro ball, and striking out in 28% of his 810 plate appearances during that span.
One month into the 2017 season – his second tour through the Carolina League – the Georgia prep product has been a different animal, slashing .361/.439/.701 and dropping his strikeout rate to 20% through his first 164 plate appearances. Not only is Chavis making more consistent, and better, contact, but the young corner infielder has also launched 11 home runs this season (good for second in the Carolina League behind Taylor Gushue (C, Nationals)) and 14 doubles (good for fourth). His average, on-base percentage and slugging percentage all pace the league.
Chavis boasts good bat speed and natural loft in his swing, combining for easy power when he barrels the ball. With his contact rates improving greatly this year, so too have his power numbers and his batting average, quickly making him one of the more dangerous hitters in the lower minors. Cognizant of Chavis’ struggles at the plate the last two seasons, and already housing one of the best third base prospects in the game at Double-A Portland in Rafael Devers, the Sox can afford to take it slow with Chavis for now. In addition to allowing him to enjoy and build upon his Carolina League success, it would also give Chavis additional time to work through elbow inflammation that has limited him to DH duties in two-thirds of his games this season.