by Charlie O. Mallonee
The number three rated prospect in the San Francisco Giants farm system is Chris Shaw – a first baseman who is currently assigned to the Double-A Richmond Flying Squirrels of the Eastern League.
The 22-year old Shaw is a 6-foot-4, 235 pounder who bats left and throws right. His key attribute is his above average power. Shaw hit 16 home runs in 72 games at high Class-A San Jose before being promoted to Richmond. In 28 games with the Squirrels, he has hit five doubles, two triples, one home run and he has collected 14 RBI.
Shaw is seen as a solid hitter who possesses a good arm. His fielding is rated as below average – good hands but his footwork needs to improve. Shaw’s downside is his lack of speed. Even though he played some right field in college, Shaw’s lack of speed will limit him to first base at the pro level.
Shaw really uses his power against right-handed pitching. The majority of his home runs have come off righties. The one problem Shaw does have is that he can become too aggressive at the plate. In Richmond, he has 26 strike outs and just eight walks.
Shaw has had some problems adjusting to life at Double-A. He was batting .285 when he was promoted from San Jose. Shaw is currently hitting .211 with an on base percentage of .267 in Richmond.
On Tuesday night, Shaw went 1-for-4 with a RBI in a 5-2 loss to Altoona. Shaw hit a single to center with two men on base and two out to bring a runner home to score the first run of the game.
The Giants will have some decisions to make about Shaw in the future. With Brandon Belt signed to a long-term deal, the question becomes what do you do with a talent like Shaw? His skill set might be better suited to an American League team where he could play first and DH – think Billy Butler. Shaw could become a valuable trade piece in the future for the Giants.