Now let me be very, very clear on this before I go any further. I am not comparing Josh Satin to Wade Boggs. One is a Hall of Famer with 3,010 big league hits. The other is a rookie.
But let’s take a look at Wade Boggs, shall we?
He was also a corner infielder that took six years to get to the majors. It wasn’t because he couldn’t hit. In his six minor league seasons, Wade Boggs hit .318 with a .412 on base percentage with 724 career minor league hits. He was also a corner infielder that wasn’t considered a good defender, had practically no power and not much speed. He hit only 9 home runs in 2,277 minor league at-bats. He made 50 errors in 300 games playing third base.
The great Wade Boggs had 3,735 career regular season professional hits. 19% of them were at the minor league level. That’s nearly 1 of every 5 of his professional hits were in the minors. 20% of his 11,457 regular season professional at-bats were at the minor league level before he was given a chance. He hit a home run once every 253 at-bats.
Wade Boggs didn’t exactly profile as a prototypical corner infielder. He wasn’t a middle infielder. He didn’t have the power to be a DH. He was just a guy that hit. And hit. And hit. And got on base at a Hall of Fame clip.
Wade also had a third baseman who had double digit home run power who also was able to hit for average blocking his path to the majors. Namely, former American League batting champion Carney Lansford.
So let’s compare the minor league careers of Wade Boggs to Josh Satin.
Seasons – Wade Boggs (6); Josh Satin (6)
Batting Average – Wade Boggs (.318); Josh Satin (.303)
Base Hits – Wade Boggs (724); Josh Satin (683)
At Bats – Wade Boggs (2,277); Josh Satin (2,256)
Games Played – Wade Boggs (662); Josh Satin (639)
On Base Percentage – Wade Boggs (.412); Josh Satin (.398)
Runs Scored – Wade Boggs (333); Josh Satin (363)
Walks – Wade Boggs (366); Josh Satin (352)
Doubles – Wade Boggs (112); Josh Satin (173)
Home Runs – Wade Boggs (9); Josh Satin (60)
Slugging Percentage – Wade Boggs (.386); Josh Satin (.465)
OPS – Wade Boggs (.799); Josh Satin (.863)
Strikeouts – Wade Boggs (149); Josh Satin (539)
So what have we learned? Again, one player is a Hall of Famer with over 3,000 career hits. The other has fewer than 100 MLB at-bats. But both of them had nearly identical minor league careers, with Josh Satin having more power. Both of them had their paths to break into the majors blocked. Both of them hit and performed at the minor league level. Both were considered below average defenders and both of them were considered to not have enough power for their position. Both of them also performed at the Major League level when they got there.
The difference is, Wade Boggs got his chance and once he did – he continued to perform at a very high level for a very long time. Josh Satin has performed when he’s been given his limited opportunity. The only questions that remain are will he continue to be given that chance he’s earned? And if he is, will he continue to perform as he has for the last six years?
We shall see – but one thing is not in doubt. He’s earned his chance to show the world what he’s got.