In 2021 the Red Sox have surpassed all expectations. That has partly been due to the play of Rafael Devers. The 24-year-old has been one of Boston’s most potent bats while hitting a career-high 38 home runs. In the playoffs, Devers has taken his game to another level. While Boston has struggled of late, Devers has been a bright spot.
Through 10 postseason games, Devers is hitting .325 with five home runs. In 40 at-bats, Devers has been an on-base machine. The former top prospect has posted a .426 on-base percentage while recording 13 hits. During his third postseason appearance, Devers has set career highs in every offensive category.
While Devers has been a consistent source of offense, he has joined special company. The Red Sox infielder has hit eight home runs in his postseason career, which is tied for the most by a player before turning twenty-five. That list includes Mickey Mantle, Albert Pujols, and Carlos Correa. Devers also has 28 total bases which are the second-most during a playoff run in franchise history behind David Ortiz, who had 42 in 2004.
As Devers has dazzled with his bat, he has also been battling an injury. Despite dealing with pain in his right forearm, he has not missed a beat. He has come through in clutch situations and made a few impressive plays defensively. As the Red Sox look to force a Game six on Friday night, Devers will be key.
— MLB Stats (@MLBStats) October 20, 2021
Devers is rising to the occasion
Although Devers has been impressive, he is no stranger to the playoffs. In 25 postseason games, the Red Sox third baseman is hitting .318 with an OPS of .998. At the plate, he has been a consistent source of offense on baseball’s biggest stage. Although the Red Sox have dealt with a lot of adversity this year, Devers has been one of their consistent pieces after not meeting expectations in 2020.
In his fourth year in the majors, Devers got off to a slow start at the plate. He struck out 27 percent of the time and struggled to hit the fastball. He was able to rebound in the final month of the season but led baseball with 14 errors. Due to his recent play, 2020 has become a distant memory.
Regardless of how the ALCS ends, Devers has shown why he is one of baseball’s rising stars. He has three extra-base hits in his last four games and six runs batted in during that span. While he has frustrated opposing pitching, he has moved up the record books and is just getting started.
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– Jamie Gatlin ( @ JamieGatlin17 on Twitter)