It is easy to forget how good someone is in baseball, especially after a couple down seasons, this is exactly Travis Shaw’s case. From 2015-2018, Shaw averaged a .257/.332/.475 slash with a .807 OPS, those are well above average numbers, and on top of that, collected 92 home runs during those four seasons. But since 2018, Shaw has been very subpar, hitting for a .551 OPS in 2019, and a .717 OPS in 2020. The strange thing is that from 2018 to 2020, there is relatively no difference in his average Exit Velocity (88.9 and 90.9), and hit Hard Hit percentage actually was much higher in 2020 than 2018, at 44.7 percent, versus 38.3 percent in 2018. The two biggest differences is the fact that in 2020, Shaw struck out at a 27.8 percent rate (18.3 percent in 2018) and saw his BB% drop almost five whole percent. While Shaw has always struggled against breaking balls, a career .217 hitter against them, he usually has had a reputation for feasting off fastballs, but over the last two seasons he has managed just a .200 Batting Average against them.
Shaw with the glove, brings the ability of playing both corner infield positions, and playing them both well. For his career, Shaw has +7 DRS and 8.1 UZR at first base, with +9 DRS and 5.6 UZR at third, this ability is appealing to teams looking for a variety of different things. Whether teams are looking for a buy low piece to sell at the trade deadline, a platoon bat, or a full time starter, Shaw should be a intriguing piece to bounce back in 2021.
These are the teams I believe are in contention for Shaw: Toronto Blue Jays, Seattle Mariners, Milwaukee Brewers, Washington Nationals, Baltimore Orioles, Cleveland Indians
Final Landing Spot Prediction: Travis Shaw signs a 1 yr/2 million dollar deal with the Baltimore Orioles
2021 Stat Line Prediction: .245/.318/.433 .751 OPS 17 HR 53 RBI