Minnesota Twins: Can Byron Buxton Get His Groove Back?
Why hasn’t Byron Buxton evolved into an elite MLB player? He was thought to be a star according to scouts and GM’s when he was drafted with the 2nd overall pick in the 2012 MLB Entry Draft. We’ve yet to see that potential come through for the Minnesota Twins. Is he ever going to put all the pieces into place?
The 2017 season was the best Buxton has had. The 24-year-old won the Gold and Platinum Glove Awards. He proved his worth in the field. It’s his batting that has many concerned. Buxton only hit .253 for the year. For a player who has thought to be a perennial All-Star, these numbers just don’t cut it.
The belief was that Buxton would be one of the bigger stars in baseball. He’s struggled to meet those expectations. Injuries have played somewhat of a role in that. Buxton has had numerous stints on the DL.
Injuries aside, Buxton has failed to seize the opportunity as the Twins starting center fielder. He was the opening day starter in 2016, 2017, and 2018. Just take a look at the current 2018 season. Buxton hit .143 in March (7 AB), .206 in April (34 AB), and .122 in May (39 AB). These numbers are pretty consistent year to year. Buxton has done very little to prove he’s worthy of a starting job
It must be frustrating for the Twins coaching staff. Buxton isn’t showcasing the five-tool ability he did in High School and the minors. Judging by his struggles early in the season, it’s hard to envision him as an everyday MLB player. Although, there’s still a chance for him.
Buxton is only 24. He’s yet to reach the prime of his career. Some players take a lot longer to develop than others. Buxton might be one a player that needs to mature longer. That’s the one takeaway from the early career struggles.
It’s too early to write the book on Byron Buxton. It seems he lacks confidence. If he can just get some consistent time on the roster and reduce the injuries (which can’t be controlled), he’ll have a lot of time to grow his major league resume. It’s just not there for him right now. If the career continues like this Buxton will go down as a bust. Although, we can’t give up on a potential superstar so easy.
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