Overrated: End of Story

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Let me preface this by saying Trevor Story is a very good shortstop. I thought trading All-Star shortstop Troy Tulowitzki last year was a great move on Colorado’s part because Story was Major League ready. However, they took in washed up shortstop Jose Reyes and his almost expired contract and gave him the starting position for the remainder of the 2015 season. However, Story won the starting job this year in part to two things, 1) his strong spring 2) Reyes was indefinitely suspended before Opening Day for throwing his wife into a glass door.

Earlier this year I named Story one of the future stars in baseball and it’s looking like he’ll hold up on that promise. But a lot of people are proclaiming him the best shortstop in baseball and those people really need to cool their jets.

Story made Major League history earlier this season by hitting a record 7 home runs in the first 6 games of the season and his 10 total home runs surpassed Albert Pujols‘ National League record for most home runs in April by a rookie (was 9) and tied Jose Abreu‘s Major League record for the same stat. Impressive. Most impressive. But when you really dive in you find that it’s just a fluke.

Since his torrid start, Story has cooled off drastically. In his last 70 at-bats he has only 15 hits, good for a .214 average, 3 home runs, and lowered his on-base percentage to a poor .308. He has displayed terrible plate discipline, walking 9 times while striking out in 21 of 23 games, 39 times total, which is good for the league lead.

Expect to see more play like this the rest of the season. In 537 minor league games, Story found a way to strikeout 630 times while drawing only 242 walks. He hit 20 home runs in the minors last year, 10 in AA and 10 in AAA, and he should hit close to that number due to his torrid start and Colorado’s hitter-friendly park. If it weren’t for his 7 home runs in 6 games, Trevor would likely only hit 10-12 dingers in a full-season and I fully expect to see a sharp drop in homers next season. Expect his batting average to finish around .245 and his on-base to fall to .290, well below league average.

Despite the drop in production, his historic month will likely make him the starting shortstop for the NL All-Star team and will effectively end Jose Reyes’ brief stay in Colorado. The Rockies have a future star on their team in Trevor Story, it’s just going to take a few years until he becomes the player people seem to think he is.