When he’s at his best, second baseman Devon Travis is arguably the best contact hitter the Toronto Blue Jays have in their lineup.
And much like it’s been a difficult start to the season for the Blue Jays, the same thing goes for Travis, who, considering everything he’s been through this off-season, it was a miracle he was even able to be in the line-up on opening day.
During the off-season, when most other players would have been fine tuning their game, by fielding ground balls or hitting in the cage, Travis’ focus was on rehabilitating his surgically repaired knee, forget swinging a bat or fielding grounders, poor Devon Travis probably spent most of his winter in the gym or pool, trying to strengthen that knee of his.
On top of all that, as soon as Spring Training began, and everyone else started hitting against top-level pitching, Travis was stuck running sprints, rehabbing his knee, and fielding ground balls while sitting on a bucket.
Should we be surprised the Blue Jays have started the season so poorly? Absolutely. Should we be surprised that Travis is hitting only .109 three weeks into the schedule, after dealing with the off-season/spring he had to endure? Probably not.
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Not only did Travis rush back to play in spring training, but as soon as the regular season began, the Blue Jays put him right at the top of the order. For a player to be expected to hit lead-off after having just 13 at-bats in spring training was completely unrealistic.
If anything, the process Travis is currently going through to get back to being his best just goes to show how difficult it is even for a talented player like him to play against the best when he’s so far behind the rest of the pack when it comes to being game ready.
In his first two seasons in the big leagues, Travis hit for an impressive .301 AVG. Despite putting up some awful numbers through the first 16 games of the season, I have little doubt his average will be right around that magic .300 number come the end of the season.