Trade Thoughts: Robinson and Chiang


Wow, what a mess. First Travyon Robinson is going to Boston then he’s headed to Seattle then Boston and now it’s looking all worked out. With Jack Zduriencik saying that Robinson is headed to Seattle a long with Chih Hsien Chiang of Boston.

I got the privilege of watching Robinson last year while he was with the Chattanooga Lookouts and came away impressed. Solid swing on both sides of the plate and was surprisingly ok in center field for his size. He had good routes, excellent jumps and his speed was slightly better than average.

I don’t think the power is real. Not in the 20+ home run sense. Maybe some of the other guys around town have a better read on that than me. But he’s playing in Albuquerque basically the AAA version of High Desert. While, I wouldn’t say that he doesn’t have power it’s not a great amount.

The plus side of Robinson’s offensive game is that he hits the ball hard. The guy is an absolute line drive machine not to mention he has a solid approach to the plate. He draws an above-average amount of walks and while he may not have “enough” power to be considered a good corner out fielder, he’s still an above average hitter.

The down side of Robinson’s game is that he strike outs. A lot. Part of it’s that he just swings and misses a lot and while that’s generally a bad thing. It’s also that he works a lot of counts and sometimes just isn’t able to make contact to bail himself out of bad counts.

Regardless, I like Robinson a lot and he’s easily a top-10 prospect in our system.

Chiang, I like nearly equally so.

Chih Hsien Chiang has made some changes this year and has really come out on top because of it. He’s been hitting the ball extremely hard and though I have seen only seen little snippets there are a lot of positive things written about his left handed swing.

If Chiang turns out to have real power, and I’m not entirely sure on that but if, he could be the real piece. His bat isn’t elite by any stretch of the imagination but he’s got some exciting attributes.

The downside to his offensive game is simply he doesn’t walk. He doesn’t work a lot of counts and because of that he isn’t going to have a high OBP. Part of his recent success is a high BABIP, but it’s been slightly sustainable due to the fact the he’s been driving the ball so well. When he slumps, and it’s going to happen, I have a suspicion it’s going to be pretty rough.

Defensively, he’s a projected as average defensive corner out fielder with an above average arm. I’ve heard a verity of reports on his range so until I start hearing consistent positive reports he’s merely average in my mind. I think that’s part of the game that in my mind falls short in comparison to Robinson.

Neither prospects are elite. But both are very good pieces to have around and with the struggles that have been endured by a lot of the out fielders within this organization it’s nice to have them around.

I really, really like this deal. It’s sad to see Bedard depart, but they got sweet deal.