This season, offence is alarming down across Major League Baseball and unfortunately, third baseman Matt Chapman has been affected like so many others. But as the warmer months arrive, there’s hope he’ll enjoy improved success down the road.
Since arriving to the Toronto Blue Jays this past spring, though, everyone’s been waiting patiently for Chapman’s offence to showcase itself, but that’s yet to happen early on. He’s provided excellent defence at the hot corner, which was to be expected, although his bat hasn’t caught up to his glove thus far.
In 36 games, the 29-year-old is hitting .185/.266/.371 along with six home runs and 16 RBIs through 139 plate appearances. These certainly aren’t the offensive results Toronto’s front office had envisioned when they acquired the 2019 All-Star from the Oakland Athletics back in March.
What’s worse is that Chapman’s slugging has been essentially non-existent up to this point. After finishing with career-worsts in slugging percentage (.403) and isolated power (.193) last season, he’s currently carrying a problematic .371 SLG and a .185 ISO in 2022.
Credit: Nick Turchiaro-USA TODAY SportsDuring his tenure in Oakland, however, the right-hander was widely known for his power and served as a prominent threat within the middle of his former club’s batting order. Despite struggling to do so in his final season with the organization, he had been one of the top slugging third basemen in the sport from 2018-2020.
In that span, Chapman recorded the fifth-highest ISO (.251) and wRC+ score (130), the seventh-highest SLG (.510) and the seventh-most home runs (70) among all qualified third basemen, according to FanGraphs.com. Paired with his award-winning defence, this placed him as one of the elite performers in the majors at the time.
Since then, the former first-round selection has struggled mightily to replicate those stellar results. Or at least, that’s what his traditional results are showing. In actuality, some of his underlying metrics suggest he should be performing much better than he is.
While Chapman’s SL …
Author: Thomas Hall / Blue Jays Nation