As Paul mentioned in his Daily Triple Thursday, Byron Buxton is off to a rough start. In 35 plate appearances this year, he has just three hits and one walk to go along with 19 strikeouts (tops in baseball). Buxton has always been an intriguing player to me. Like many, I've been enthralled by his potential since he went second overall to the Twins in the 2012 draft.
Take a look at his prospect rankings on Baseball Reference. The hype was so strong that he didn't drop below two after hitting .209/.250/.326 in 129 AB with the Twins in 2015.
Obviously it's much easier to evaluate players' prior performances than predict their future outcomes. Now that Buxton has failed consistently in the majors, we can look back at his minor league stats and wonder why the hype was so strong.
Let's compare that with Mike Trout, who was taken 25th overall in the 2009 draft.
Again, it's easy to look back on Buxton's minor league numbers and say they aren't impressive now. But, I'm always going to be reluctant to bet on a guy to succeed at the majors when he hasn't dominated in the minors first, like Trout. I hope Buxton can turn it around; he's certainly a fun player when he's hitting well. But, I don't think anyone is confident in that anymore.
Tomorrow, I'll keep the Buxton content train going. I'm going to try to put his first 500 PA in the majors (reached on Wednesday) in perspective. Just how outmatched has he been? How many good players' careers have started off like this? Is there any hope? Looking forward to it.