If it’s up to Travis Shaw, he will be a member of the Milwaukee Brewers for years to come.
Shaw told Tom Haudicourt of the Milwaukee Journal Sentinel that is he hoping to be offered a contract extension by the Brewers at some point in the near future, as Haudicourt mentions in a recent article:
“You’ve got two great on-base guys in [Christian] Yelich and [Lorenzo] Cain and that set the table for the middle of the order, whatever that order’s going to be,” said Shaw, who likes it so much in Milwaukee that he is hopeful of being offered a contract extension at some point.
As it stands right now, Shaw is under team control by Milwaukee until 2022, and isn’t eligible for arbitration until the 2019 season. This means that any contract extension with the Brewers would likely wipe out Shaw’s arbitration years, and at least one free agent year. After a career year in 2017, Shaw is looking to reach even greater heights in 2018, and the stage is set for him to do so.
Shaw slashed .273/.349/.513 with 31 home runs and 101 runs batted in across 606 plate appearances in his first year with the Brewers, and with new additions Christian Yelich and Lorenzo Cain scheduled to hit in-front of him everyday in the lineup along with a healthy Ryan Braun most days, Shaw could be primed to drive in even more runs.
The metrics say that Shaw could even hit more home runs in 2018 too, as his 37.6% fly ball rate in 2017 was the lowest mark of his career, while his 42.5% ground ball rate was the highest mark. On the flip side, however, Shaw’s soft contact rate dipped down, and his hard contact rate went up. That means that as long as Shaw keeps his hard contact rate high, his fly ball to ground ball ratio shouldn’t overly matter.
Haudicourt also learned that Shaw spent much of his off-season working out in Wisconsin, adding on even more strength. Once Haudicourt suggested that the increased strength could lead to more home runs for Shaw, the 27-year-old shied away from that proclamation:
“I’m not even going to go there,” said Shaw. “I don’t even want to think about hitting home runs because it gets me in trouble. For me, it’s just continuing to be consistent, drive the ball the other way. For me, it’s to try to hit 40 doubles more than it is to hit home runs.
Regardless of when and how they come, the home runs will keep coming from Shaw. He’s just hoping that he hits enough of them in 2018 to make him a nice payday, and keep him with the Brewers for the long run.
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