San Francisco Giants: Jaylin Davis should be starting in September

SCOTTSDALE, AZ - MARCH 11: A San Francisco Giants hat sits in a bucket of baseballs during a Cactus League game between the Giants and the Milwaukee Brewers at Scottsdale Stadium on March 11, 2015 in Scottsdale, Arizona. (Photo by Ralph Freso/Getty Images)
SCOTTSDALE, AZ - MARCH 11: A San Francisco Giants hat sits in a bucket of baseballs during a Cactus League game between the Giants and the Milwaukee Brewers at Scottsdale Stadium on March 11, 2015 in Scottsdale, Arizona. (Photo by Ralph Freso/Getty Images) /

San Francisco Giants fans will likely see scorching hot outfield prospect Jaylin Davis make his major-league debut this September. Upon his arrival, he should be given a chance to start.

The San Francisco Giants have slowly fallen out of reasonable wild card contention since the trade deadline. After an exhilarating July that resulted in a miracle run for the lovable Giants, the team has simply come back down to earth in recent weeks.

The bats have cooled off somewhat and the pitching has let the team down. But most importantly, the magic has just worn off.

The Giants are no longer winning close games by a slim margin — they’re losing them. And even contests that seem winnable end up as close defeats after providing the team with hope.

Unfortunately, that midseason hope has made this August collapse all the more painful. While a postseason berth isn’t impossible at this stage, it certainly doesn’t seem likely anymore.

And that’s all okay. After all, the Giants weren’t expected to be competing for a playoff spot this season. 2019 was expected to be a year of transition of a San Francisco Giants franchise under the control of first-year president of baseball operations Farhan Zaidi.

Zaidi has done a great job piecing together a competitive roster of aging veterans and hidden gems, but at this point, it’s clear what the team must do. September should be about giving some of the team’s young players some sizable playing time.

And chief among those players should be recently acquired outfield prospect Jaylin Davis.

Davis was acquired by the Giants at the deadline in a trade that sent reliever Sam Dyson packing to Minnesota. And since joining the Sacramento River Cats, the Giants Triple-A affiliate, Davis has been on an absolute tear.

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The 24-year-old has hit an astonishing 10 home runs in just 18 games played while slashing .403/.494/.940 at the plate. Yes, you read that correctly. Davis has an unbelievable .940 slugging percentage through his first 79 plate appearances.

His incredible streak has even caused the Giants to consider calling him up before the roster expansion period begins in September. But with a logjam in the outfield, that doesn’t appear likely.

Kevin Pillar and Mike Yastrzemski aren’t being replaced anytime soon and Alex Dickerson has been an impressive midseason find who has played at a high level, when healthy that is. And Austin Slater has filled in nicely when Dickerson has been out.

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If Davis were to be recalled, there doesn’t appear to be a viable role for him. However, that should change come September.

Assuming the Giants don’t suddenly propel themselves back into playoff contention again — they currently sit six games back of the Wild Card — September should be about giving the young players some playing time.

As such, Davis should be given every opportunity to prove that his success in the minors isn’t a fluke. And based solely on the numbers, his impressive stretch in Sacramento doesn’t appear to be a one-off, lucky run.

Detractors will, of course, point to the fact that Davis is hitting in the historically hitter-friendly Pacific Coast League. And while that may be true, his numbers before he came to the West Coast were still impressive.

While playing with the Rochester Red Wings, Minnesota’s Triple-A affiliate, Davis still hit a very solid .331 knocking in 15 home runs and 42 RBI in 41 games this season. He had an OPS of over 1.100 and was among the league leaders in multiple categories.

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Mind you, this was while he was playing in the International League — not the heavily-scrutinized Pacific Coast League.

The Giants should give Davis a chance to shine in September and it will force them to take away some playing time from some of their regular starters. And if that is the plan, it makes the most sense to play Pillar less frequently.

Out of the three, Pillar has the fewest years of team control — outside of Yastrzemski who is sure to be re-signed — and is likely playing the worst. While the 30-year-old has picked it up as of late including a five-hit game a week ago, his overall season numbers are still not all too impressive.

Playing Davis in center field, where he’s been playing in Sacramento, could be the way to go as it would allow an outfield trio of Yastrzemski, Davis, and Dickerson to hopefully shine in September.

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At the very least, it can’t hurt to give the prospect a chance to see what he’s got. Perhaps he turns out to be another Mac Williamson, or perhaps he’s a legitimate building block for the future.

There’s only one way to find out.