On the day Khris Davis was acquired in exchange for two prospects (link), the one thing Oakland Athletics fans were guaranteed was an inexpensive power hitter. Just from casual watching of Davis’s play, one could tell that this guy had some power stored in his biceps.
However, as the season began, Davis started off with a very cold start. The power the team was hoping for was not coming from the hard-hitting left fielder who had 27 home runs in just 121 games. It was not until Game 14 when we first had the opportunity to see his power on display at the Yankee Stadium. He went on to struggle some more at the plate but he proved that he can launch the ball a great distance if he made contact.
Davis was finally able to tap into his power on May 2. The Athletics lost but there was a new feeling in confidence that is Khris Davis’ power. He hit two home runs and they were no doubters. From that day, it felt as if he was capable of showcasing his power each time he went up to bat. Davis followed this game by hitting another home run. This was crucial for the Athletics lineup as another power hitter, third baseman Danny Valencia, was put on the disabled list.
On the road trip beginning May 7 against the Baltimore Orioles, Davis was able to homer against the Red Sox and another time against the Rays; in total, he drove in seven runs on the road trip.
Soon after, Davis and the Athletics faced the Texas Rangers who are currently in second place in the American League West. This was the series that felt like a long time coming for Davis.
On May 17, Davis had his best game at the plate in his short, A’s career. Cole Hamels was on the mound and, on paper, this was going to be a tough match up for the Athletics lineup. Hamels entered the game with four wins and no losses. However, Davis was out to prove that he was ready to showcase his power against any pitcher. In Davis’ first at bat, he hit a home run to the left field bleachers to put the Athletics up 2-0 early. In the sixth inning, he tied the game up with a home run over the tall wall in left center. Finally, after closer Ryan Madson blew his first save of the season, Davis was up with the bases loaded, two outs, a 2-2 count, all while down 5-4. Closer Shawn Tolleson threw a 95 mile per hour fastball at the knees and Davis took a big swing and drove the ball deep to the left field bleachers. The hit sealed the comeback win for the Athletics.
Davis ended up receiving the special walk off treatment filled with two pie smashes, a Gatorade shower, and an unwrapped gum shower.
Although it is tough to outdo a career night, Davis managed to go 2 for 2 with a solo home run, his twelfth of the year, and two walks. One can only hope that Davis continues to display his tremendous power and try to lead the team in home runs this season. Davis has hit about half of the amount of home runs as he had last season, in about a third of the amount of games. He is currently tied for second in home run leaders, trailing the Rockies’ Nolan Arenado by one home run.
The Athletics face the struggling Yankees in a four game weekend series. Let’s see if Davis can continue his power stroke.
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