Michael Chavis is a student of the game.
The Boston Red Sox rookie takes great pride in honing his craft, as he’s often spotted jotting down notes during games. While Chavis’ note-taking has produced an inordinate amount of Twitter jokes, his diligence and attention to detail paid off and then some Monday night at Fenway Park.
Chavis found himself in a bases-loaded situation in the first inning of the series opener against the Blue Jays. The 23-year-old, who’s been susceptible to the high fastball this season, sure enough took a high heater from Toronto starter Trent Thornton for a strike on the first pitch of the at-bat and swung through an elevated four-seamer two pitches later. From there, Chavis showed patience and maturity, as he laid off a rising 2-2 fastball and fouled off another one at the top of the strike zone on the following pitch. The young slugger ultimately won the battle on the seventh pitch of the at-bat, belting his first career grand slam to give the Red Sox a 5-0 lead in the early going.
The powerful righty is well-aware of how pitchers often will try to attack him, and his past shortcomings aren’t lost on him either. This information, as well as the lessons learned, have conveyed into notes in his notebook, which will continue to aid Chavis as he forms into a more professional hitter.
“I know that’s something that people are going to attack me with. In that situation, it’s probably the safest pitch to throw,” Chavis said after the Red Sox’s 10-8 win, per The Boston Globe. “If it means fouling it off and trying to get to another one or taking it for a ball, it’s definitely something I’ve been working on. Having done that to earn the next pitch, that’s kind of one of the things I’ve been writing in my book: Earn a pitch to hit. That’s what I did.”
So, what did Chavis add to his notebook after the grand slam?
“Do that again,” he told NESN’s Jahmai Webster. “Repeat that swing.”