It was reported on Monday by Susan Slusser that Ryon Healy could possibly be on the move this offseason after his first full Major League season. Healy, 25, played in 149 games, hitting 25 dingers, but walked in just 3.8 percent of his plate appearances in 2017.
The power is nice, but he is not the only young player that the Athletics have played at the corners on the infield. Matt Chapman and Matt Olson are also very valuable to a team that is rebuilding, and maybe just a bit more valuable than Healy.
Olson broke onto the scene after playing in over 200 Triple-A games in 2016 and 2017 to hit 24 homers in 59 Major League games. That isn’t going to be expected going forward, but it is something you look at and think about the potential he could have for the future.
Then you have Chapman at third base who was an above average player in 2017 and is a much better defender than Healy at third base. Healy spent 40 more innings at first than he did at third this past season, but he was an average defender at first and below average across the diamond.
There have been reported conversations of Davis spending more time at DH as well, which also takes a spot away from either Healy or Olson, who both deserve to play every day. So, it basically boils down to, who is the odd man out in a trio of young players?
That answer seems to be Healy at this point and if you can move a 25-year-old infielder with pop to acquire pitching that is desperately needed, I think you pull the trigger.
That leaves you with everyday playing time for both Matt’s at the corners and the ability to have Davis at DH the majority of the time. That makes your defense on paper a couple of runs above average better than it was in 2017.
Yes, the pitching was bad, but pair that with bad defense and it is a train wreck. Fans may not be happy to see a young player be traded away again, but doing so could make the team better overall in 2018 and beyond.