Q. Does his K/BB alarm you? Is he Wlad Balentien?
A. I suppose that every M's right-hand Latin hitter with 70 power is going to be Wlad Balentien for awhile. Sigh.
There are 9,000 species within the "big free-swinging righty with 70 power" genus. I don't see why Chavez would comp to Balentien, as opposed to a Jermaine Dye, a Dave Winfield, an Adam Jones ... or to a Marc Newfield, for that matter.
Balentien was the last RH power prospect the Mariners had; they have that in common :- )
Q. Can he hit? You know, HIT skill as opposed to PWR skill.
A. SSI supposes that this is precisely the point that has scouts visualizing a big ML career.
Watch Chavez carefully in the video and you'll see him shadowing the ball -- with head, torso, and hands -- with very quick, sudden reactions.
This is the type of thing that has scouts putting him in a different category from the Halmans and Balentiens. SSI saw Halman late in the year ... he's fun to watch, but he sets himself in the box like a mortar, back leg planted, with a heavy swing like a cannon shot. Chavez is quick, twitchy, mobile in the box.
Halman, when I saw him late, was super confused, behind fastballs, ahead of breaking balls ... hey, we're not dis'sing the dude.
We're just talking about the difference between 40 HIT / 75 PWR and 60 HIT / 70 PWR. One guy is quick at the plate and the other's not. Y'feel me?
Q. 60 HIT, you think? Despite the K's?
A. Here's a nice article from this August. Our man Pedro Grifol again relays the Mariner view of Chavez:
The Mariners believe it's evidence that some changes to his swing are taking hold after considerable work with High Desert hitting coach Tommy Cruz and minor league hitting coordinators Jose Castro and Phil Plantier.
"He's a big strong kid with a lot of tools," said Pedro Grifol, the Mariners' minor league director. "He had a slight uppercut swing, but Phil Plantier, Jose Castro and Tommy Cruz have revamped this kid's swing and approach."
Chavez had a .383 on-base percentage, .586 slugging percentage and .969 on-base-plus-slugging percentage, and his 41 walks already were the most in his pro career. He went into Tuesday with a 22-game hitting streak.
"He's turning himself into a heck of a prospect," Grifol said.
You'll have to check me on this, but I doubt that Wlad Balentien and Greg Halman put together a lot of 22-game hitting streaks.