The expectations for Michael Chavis were high before he even arrived at Hadlock Field. It took only one pitch to make them soar.

Chavis crushed a 92 mph fastball over the left-field wall.

Welcome to Portland.

Chavis, 21, was the first-round draft pick for the Boston Red Sox in 2014. His numbers weren’t overwhelming until this year, when he beat up advanced Class A pitching.

But what would he do in Double-A? Well, if the first pitch he saw is any indication …

“It’s nice to see he continued with what he had success with last year,” said Sea Dogs hitting coach Lee May Jr., who coached Chavis for most of the two previous seasons in low Class A Greenville. Chavis may have had struggles, but May saw through that.

“The kid has a lot of talent,” May said. “Just another year maturing as a hitter, and seasoning. He learned a little about himself the last few years.”

Two seasons ago, that first-pitch homer may have gone to his head.

In 2015, even though Chavis was in high school the year before, the Red Sox challenged him with an assignment in Greenville.

In his first game, Chavis was hitless in his first two at-bats, then homered.

“Probably one of my farthest home runs to this day,” he said. “Then my last at-bat, I hit a walk-off double off the wall. So first night, pretty good.”

Chavis smiled. He smiles a lot, especially when he’s about to laugh at himself.

“What happened from there? I was a stupid 19-year-old. I’m going to do that every night,” Chavis said. “That resulted in like a .190 average in the first half … I’d look up at the scoreboard (which showed his average) and say, ‘dadgum. That’s bad.’ ”

The year before, Chavis batted .580 in high school. He had to deal with failure.

“I like to think I have a pretty good sense of humor so I tried to treat it light-hearted,” Chavis said. “But you’re looking up there and that’s not even close to where I wanted to be. It was definitely a little bit of a kick in the stomach.”

Chavis improved a little, batting .223 that first full year – with 16 home runs. He wasn’t happy to be sent back to Greenville in 2016 but pointed the finger at himself.

“My personal expectations, I should have been higher (in Class A Salem). I wanted to take care of business and show I was ready to move on,” said Chavis.

He began with a .326 average in 25 games before tearing a ligament in his thumb. He came back six weeks later and messed up.

“My third, fourth, game back, we’re taking ground balls in Greensboro,” Chavis said. “A ball takes a bad hop and breaks my middle finger (on his right hand).

“Then I had a dumb, now-20-year-old moment and didn’t tell anybody about it. I just got back (from the disabled list), I was going to play through it.

“It was stupid. I should have shut it down.”

Chavis’ fielding suffered and his hitting numbers tumbled. He finished at .244 with eight home runs.

He was promoted to Salem at the end of the season “but I didn’t deserve it,” he said.

Chavis began the 2017 season in Salem, a wised-up 21-year-old. After the first game, his right shoulder felt sore.

“Instead of playing through it, I told the trainer and took some time off,” Chavis said. “I came back and that’s what put me in the position I’m in now.”

In 59 games in Salem, Chavis batted .318 with a 1.029 OPS. Most impressively, he hit 17 home runs, including a franchise-record 12 homers in Salem’s pitcher-friendly stadium (Xander Bogaerts hit nine home runs in Salem).

In a memorable game April 19, Chavis hit three home runs.

Going to do that every night? Chavis learned his lesson.

“I keep a notebook of every at-bat, every pitcher I’ve seen. If you go back and look at that notebook that day, one thing I remember writing is to flush every thought of home runs,” he said. “Stick to your approach and what got you here.”

Chavis takes pride in being an all-around hitter. That pride took a hit in the early years, especially as a first-rounder.

“All these people were saying I’m a bust. I received tweets saying I was a waste of money,” he said. “And now, for half a season, I’m doing what I should be doing.”

He kept doing it Friday in his Sea Dogs debut with a 2-for-4 night (walk and two runs). Chances are good he will have the same approach Saturday.

Kevin Thomas can be reached at 791-6411 or:

[email protected]

Twitter: ClearTheBases