Matt Chapman

Chapman details conversations with Davis about their Giants roles

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The Giants have welcomed Matt Chapman to their infield, signing the third baseman to a one-year, $18 million deal -- with the option to become a four-year, $54 million deal -- with spring training underway.

As a result, J.D. Davis, San Francisco’s previous primary option at the hot corner for the 2023 MLB season, might be the odd man out.

Chapman, however, attempted to flip the narrative during his introductory press conference Monday, explaining how he has talked with Davis about their roles this season.

“Obviously, everybody’s aware of the situation,” Chapman told reporters. “I think there are other opportunities for J.D. on this team. You know, J.D. is a great baseball player. I’ve known J.D. since I was like 18 years old, we’re buddies. I wouldn’t say [it’s] awkward. I would just say we understand the situation. 

“Baseball is frustrating sometimes, and unfortunately, things like that happen. But J.D. has been nothing but supportive, and I’m here to help J.D. and support J.D. in any way. We’re teammates, and that’s what we’re focused on, winning baseball games. I think there are at-bats for J.D. all over the place.”

The two are Cal State Fullerton alumni and share no hard feelings due to their connection since a young age.

But Chapman will be the clear No. 1 at third base in manager Bob Melvin’s lineup, which leaves Davis in a pickle. 

Davis improved defensively last year, but his best doesn’t rival what a four-time Gold Glove winner in Chapman can offer. Davis’ versatility also doesn’t stand out among a crowd featuring Tyler Fitzgerald, LaMonte Wade Jr. and Wilmer Flores.

Casey Schmitt, a 25-year-old infielder often compared to Chapman, will be competing for playing time as well, and he’ll have better odds at seeing it since he’s five years younger than Davis. 

It’s unclear where Davis fits into San Francisco’s lineup, if at all, but Chapman certainly has his back, and the two will be cordial during their time as teammates.  

After all, the Giants want to win, and sacrifices are to occur. 

Davis likely would be in contention for a starting role on many other teams If he didn’t have to fight for playing time with Chapman.

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