D.J. Davis has yet to live up to the hype which surrounded him when the Toronto Blue Jays drafted him in 2012 out of Stone County HS, Wiggins Mississippi. The talented outfielder possesses game changing speed, range in the outfield suited for CF, strong/quick hands, and solid gap power.
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In his first 3 seasons, those skills weren’t clear, which prompted the young outfielder to repeat Low-A ball with the Lansing Lugnuts in 2015. The 21-year-old responded by make large leaps in his development, showing improvement in every aspect of his game.
D.J. Davis’ heat map
Mandatory Credit: MLBfarm.com
In 2015, D.J. showed a more consistent approach at the plate, a better running game, and was much better in the outfield. All these improvements were very refreshing, especially after the hit his stock took over the previous two seasons. With talented young men like Davis, it is important to remember the ‘young’ part.
The speedster was able to get on-base much more with 7.0 BB%, .353 BABIP, and 8 HBP. D.J. got on base at his highest rate since his age 17 season generating a solid OBP of .340, which was up from .268 in 2014. Dylan J. Davis was able to use this success to improve on his running game, stealing 21 of 31 after stealing 19 of 39 in 2014.
Consistency was huge for him. September was the only month which saw him hit under .274. He didn’t show any noticeable splits hitting .276 against LHP and .284 against RHP, proving that he is an everyday player and consistent contributor. Lugnuts Manager Ken Huckaby penciled Davis into every slot of the line-up except 7th, but had the most success in the 5th slot. Making 62 appearances in the 5th spot, Davis hit .282/.336/.399 with 4HR, 28 of his 59 RBI, and 8SB.
His power numbers experienced a slight bump, .109 ISO, setting a career high in doubles (19) while hitting 7 triples and 7 home runs. He finished with a triple slash of .282/.340/.391 with an OPS of .731.
Last year, Davis committed 18 errors. This year, he was able to cut that number down to 11 with a decent .957 fielding percentage. In the limited number of games that I watched, Davis looked more comfortable in LF, when Anthony Alford competed beside him in CF.
Blue Jays former GM Alex Anthopoulos quietly accumulated a solid group of talented young outfielders which includes 26-year-old Kevin Pillar (Jays starting CF), 22-year-old Dalton Pompey (Triple-A starting CF), 24-year-old Roemon Fields (Double-A OF), and 21-year-old Anthony Alford(Double-A OF) and Davis can now be included on that list once again.
Davis will spend this winter in the Florida Instructional League.