by Eric Stashin (aka The Rotoprofessor)
In the wake of the trade that sent Andrew McCutchen to the Yankees the San Francisco Giants have called up Chris Shaw. Considered one of their top prospect, Shaw was hitting .259 with 24 HR, 65 RBI and 55 R over 394 AB at Triple-A this season.
Over 730 AB at Triple-A across the past two seasons he’s hit 42 HR while adding 46 doubles and 3 triples, so there’s obviously a little bit of power in his bat. That shouldn’t be a surprise for the 6’4” outfielder, though that’s about where the positive statements end.
There are two significant issues hanging over him:
- Platoon potential
In regards to a platoon, just look at the left-handed hitter’s splits from this season:
- LHP – .204/.275/.366
- RHP – .276/.319/.548
Of his 24 HR 21 of them have come against RHP (39 of his total 47 extra bases hits). While he showed a better average against LHP last season while at Triple-A, over the course of his time there he’s hit just 4 HR against southpaws and 38 against RHP.
That risk alone is going to limit his potential upside, and then you have to factor in his strikeout potential. Just look at these numbers from Triple-A (strikeout rate // SwStr%):
- 2017 – 29.4% // 16.2%
- 2018 – 34.1% // 19.3%
Those are scary, especially since they could take another step backwards upon reaching the Majors. It makes sense that the Giants are giving him a shot, because they have nothing to lose and are going nowhere this season. That said, the chances of him making much of an impact is minimal at best. Maybe he chips in a handful of home runs, but there are questions about his playing time and he may simply not make enough contact.
In the deepest of formats maybe take the gamble, but for everyone else he’s easily ignored.
Current Grade – C+
Upside Grade – B-
Sources – Fangraphs, MILB.com