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2020 Marlins Season Review: Jazz Chisholm

Even though the 22-year-old shortstop didn’t have the season he probably wanted, he’s still among the most intriguing prospects in the organization.

MLB: Game One-Philadelphia Phillies at Miami Marlins Rhona Wise-USA TODAY Sports

Highly anticipated prospect Jazz Chisholm made his debut with the Marlins in 2020 and was even part of the postseason roster. Acquired from the Diamondbacks in exchange for RHP Zac Gallen in 2019, let’s see how the fourth-ranked prospect in the Miami organization performed at the highest level...

Chisholm’s MLB career stats | Baseball-Reference

After a brief, successful stint in Double-A last year in Jacksonville, the Marlins didn’t want Jazz Chisholm to waste all of 2020. They called him up to the bigs on September 1 in the aftermath of trading away fellow middle infielder Jonathan Villar.

The Bahamas native didn’t impress out of the gate, though.

The 22-year-old had more downs than ups across his 62 plate appearances, but the cancelation of the Minor League Baseball season certainly put him at a disadvantage. Under normal circumstances, he would’ve been on a trajectory for a call-up in September only after getting five months’ worth of Triple-A games under his belt.

Instead, he skipped that MiLB level completely, spending approximately two months scrimmaging at the club’s alternate training site in Jupiter. Better than nothing, but not ideal for him.

Miami Marlins v New York Yankees Photo by Jim McIsaac/Getty Images

Despite having a steep 15.6 launch angle, which can match really well with his power at the batter’s box, and an above-average 10.8 % barrel percentage, Chisholm’s expected batting average was a low .174. The same could be said of his expected slugging percentage (.340).

Chisholm didn’t have the same batted ball profile he’s had at previous stops of his professional career. According to FanGraphs, he hit way too many fly balls (51.4%) and fewer line drives (11.4%), stats that don’t match his MiLB standards. Also, he’s always been a pull hitter, but this time only 29.7% of his batted balls fell in the right field area, with 43.2% going to CF.

Additional Stats

  • Chisholm (22.213) is the youngest position player to debut for the Marlins since Jake Marisnick (22.115), back in 2013.
  • He was incredibly better against lefties than righties: .286/.286/.643 off left-handed pitchers, but .119/.229/.214 off right-handers.
  • Random fact: His full name is Jasrado Hermis Arrington Chisholm.

High point: A 2-for-4 performance against the Yankees in the final regular-season game, including a solo shot and three runs batted in.

2021 Outlook

There are a million reasons to believe this isn’t the final version of Chisholm. He’s far from reaching his ceiling—he’ll get better soon. I insist, there are reasons to believe he’ll be the shortstop of the future for the Marlins. Still, you need to know what is prudent to expect from the youngster.

Chisholm will probably strike out something around once per game, BUT could easily develop into a 25 HR/20 SB guy. Remember he already hit 18 home runs across 89 Double-A games in 2019 while he was still part of the Diamondbacks. In part due to his swing, he isn’t expected to hit for a high average, but for a good amount of round-trippers that will combine nicely with his great speed and good defense in shortstop.

Fish Stripes original GIF

Chisholm needs to be tested during a full season and 2021 might be his chance to. The Marlins have yet to acquire any veteran alternatives to compete with him at second base, limiting the competition to Chisholm, Isan Díaz and super-utility man Jon Berti. At the very least, his playing time should increase from 2020.