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Monday, August 10, 2009
Is A's OF Davis for real?


Amidst the Athletics' sea of disappointments this season, there have been a few lonely islands of goodness, most notably: the bullpen generally; and Rajai Davis and rookie pitcher Brett Anderson, specifically. Davis struggled terribly in the first half, but since the All-Star break he's hitting .369/.440/.569 in 23 games, which is enough to boost his season numbers well past mere respectability.

Can he stay there? That's what Athletics Nation's Nico wants to know:

Over 659 plate appearances in the majors, Davis has a .330 on-base percentage. No, that's not 34 percent but it's close enough. In almost exactly the same number of plate appearances (656) in Triple-A, Davis has a .353 on-base percentage.

So, we may safely assume that he can get on base 34 percent of the time. Roughly speaking.

Is that good enough? Perhaps. Davis has little power and will always have little power. But he does run the bases effectively and he does play well in center field. Oh, and of course he's super cheap. For Davis, the problem is that he's probably not a late bloomer; he just happens to be getting his chance at a typically blooming point in a player's career.

Right now, Davis is good enough to play regularly. He and the A's need to milk this moment for all its worth. Because a year or three from now, he'll once again be a fourth outfielder.