The huge elephant in the room, however, is the arm of history. In the year He missed the 2021 season with an elbow strain. Historically, his elbow didn’t bother him in his first season with the Red Sox, but the numbers suggest — or perhaps more uncomfortably, that’s the mindset of who he is now.

Thanks to Baseball Savant, we now have statistical data to measure arm strength. History 52 of 58 qualified shortstops in 2021 with average arm strength, average throwing velocity of 79 mph. The real cause for concern, as far as those numbers are concerned, is that they represent a sharp drop. He averaged 82.3 mph, ranking 22nd out of 34 shortstops in the history of the 2020 campaign.

Bogaerts, for what it’s worth, ranked 38th at 82 mph in 2021 and improved to 82.1 mph last season.

From an arm-strength perspective, moving Story to second base makes sense. Overall it worked. Despite pitching 813.2 innings, he was good for six runs, which ranked eighth among major league second basemen. Going to second, however, did not put his hand down. Tariq ranked 61st among 70 second basemen in average arm strength.

The Red Sox, to their credit, didn’t hide from the potential issue.

“It’s certainly something we’ve talked about and we’re aware of,” Red Sox chief baseball officer Chaim Blue told reporters Tuesday, per the Boston Globe. “Trevor knows. It’s obviously not a secret.”

The apparent prospect, if Story becomes an everyday shortstop, is that his range and athleticism will make up for anything lost in the lack of arm strength.

“First, wherever he plays, we’re optimistic that we’ll be in a better position with him. Just now we’ve built that relationship, that trust with him, being able to take an entire season to get in front of this. But two, his range is amazing. We’ve seen that he can make throws on the run. When he has to do something on the ball, he can. I think no matter where we put him, he’s going to get to a lot of balls so he’s going to make plays.



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