At one point Logan Schafer was one of the top prospects in the Milwaukee Brewers organization. He was expected to be a five tool talent that could do everything on the baseball field and someone who could finally give the Brewers a legitimate leadoff threat. But things have changed. The emergence of Gold Glove centerfielder, Carlos Gomez, and the return of 2011 MVP, Ryan Braun to the lineup there is no spot for Schafer. Khris Davis appears to have the inside track in left, but looking at Schafer’s minor league career, and his all-around abilities, he has a great chance to play a vital role on the Brewers’ roster this season.
Schafer first became a prospect with his great showing in the minor leagues. In 2009, the former third round draft pick, batted a combined .308 with six homers and 17 steals through two levels. These numbers put him on the Brewers radar as he was named the organizational player of the year.
After missing almost all of the 2010 season, Schafer jumped three levels in 2011 while batting a career high .315 and again stealing double digit bases. He played so well that he was able to eventually earn a September call-up where he was used primarily as a pinch runner.
The next season, with a log jam in the Milwaukee outfield, Schafer was sent back to AAA Nashville where he again put up solid numbers. Finally, in 2013 after injuries and a suspension for Ryan Braun, Schafer had his chance to shine. But, instead of taking the reins of the starting role and making an impact at the plate, Schafer struggled. He could never get into a rhythm as he batted just .211 throughout the season.
Where Schafer did impress was in the field. He showed excellent route running on flyballs, incredible range and closing speed, and a fantastic throwing arm. He tossed out four runners who dared to advance on his laser-like left arm and he finished the season without an error.
This spring Logan Schafer’s bat has caught fire. Through his first 15 games Schafer has hit .351 with a .415 on-base percentage and four steals. He is making it very difficult for Ron Roenicke to put him on the bench heading into 2014. Even if he does not receive too many starts, he is expected to be a fantastic defensive replacement for the weak armed, Khris Davis, and he can also step in for an occasional start at any outfield position. His valuable experience as a pinch hitter last season should help him to be a solid bat off the bench and his speed on the bases makes him the number-one option to pinch run this season. To be successful teams need well-rounded players. Even if he is not an everyday player, Logan Schafer is set to have a huge impact on the Brewers season.
Statistics Provided by Baseball Reference