When power hitters are talked about in the MLB, big names like J.D. Martinez, Giancarlo Stanton, Bryce Harper and Aaron Judge are often come up first. All of those names however, pale in comparison to one hitter who resides in Oakland. While he doesn’t get the fanfare of others, the Oakland A’s Khris Davis is the biggest slugger in baseball. With massive power, Davis is the one of the most underrated bats in the game today.
Khris Davis Early Success
Coming up through the Milwaukee Brewers organization, Davis always showcased power. While playing in difficult minor league settings, he homered 22 times in the Midwest League for the Timberrattlers in 2010 and his power and prospect status continued to grow every year. This earned him a promotion to the Brewers in 2013.
He continued to showcase power in Milwaukee, reaching double digit home run totals in each of his first three seasons. Though power showed, the biggest knock on Davis was his defense. Often he was able to get to balls well in left field, but his throwing arm was a cause for frustration in Milwaukee, especially among fans.
As the Brewers entered a full-on rebuild in 2015, Davis was shipped to Oakland in the offseason for Jacob Nottingham and Bubba Derby. Coming off of a career high 27 homers in Milwaukee in 2015, there were questions as to whether Davis’ power numbers would see decline. This was a big concern considering that he was leaving hitter friendly Miller Park the pitcher friendly Oakland Coliseum.
Oakland Power Surge
Instead of declining, Davis has shown that he can slug it with the best hitters in the game. With a powerful swing that keeps the barrel in the zone for a long time, Davis taken his home run production to a new level. Using the whole field, Davis showed that he can put the ball in the seats no matter where he plays.
In each year in Oakland he has hit more than forty homers to lead the A’s offense. Last season, while the team made their run to earn the second-wild card spot, Davis put the team on his back hitting 48 home runs to lead the league while putting up a .874 OPS. While these numbers were dominant, they were good enough to earn him an eighth place finish in the American League Most Valuable Player voting.
Since 2016, Davis’ 133 home runs is more than anyone in baseball according to ESPN.com. The next closest is Stanton at 124, but for some reason the attention is never on Davis. Over the past four seasons, Davis has been Mr. Consistent. He has batted exactly .247 each season since 2015. In these years 40 home runs has also been a given. In a lineup filled with young talent, Davis has become a superstar and leader. The offense runs through him and he is truly the bat that is feared. The A’s have become one of the best team’s in the AL and as they look to make another run in 2019, Davis will continue to shine, even if almost no one notices.