I'm pleased and flattered that you agreed with me. Let me return the favor by disagreeing with you.
I don't think it's useful to compare strikeouts with balls put in play. It confuses the certainty of one result, versus uncertainty on a partial result, when the comparison should be on the approach before the first ball is pitched.
What's missing when you say that a strikeout is wasted, is that there was not just the one opportunity, but (according to the umpire) three, namely the three strikes. Now, if the batter just stares at three pitches down the middle, that's certainly wasted. If he flails at three pitches outside of the strike one, that's wasted. If he takes cuts at strikes thrown but in a bad way (say, fooled by a change up or doesn't know how to read a curve), that's wasted. Even the kind of swing can be a bad idea, say an extreme launch angle when a gale is blowing in. But... a good approach and a good eye can still result in a strikeout, and in that case I don't necessarily have a quarrel with the outcome - it just didn't work, on that at bat.
Let me turn it around. I could say, "Double plays are a completely wasted at bat. Nothing good can come from it. Nothing. Striking out at least meant you had a chance for a home run." You see how I'm reversing the comparison, one being the final result and the other incorporating the chances that a particular plate appearance had?
None of this is to defend Sano's recent trips to the plate, which have been pretty brutal. It's the eye test that he's flunking, not simply the strikeout accumulation. He looks lost.
I understand your angle (I think), but I can't agree. I can handle a strikeout in certain situations, but they still have no chance at being positive. While double plays aren't exactly a positive result, they are at least the result of a ball put in play. It still forces the defense to field the ball and then execute the play. I can deal with that because contact was at least made and it forced the defense to make the play. A run will never score as the result of a strikeout. A runner will never advance as the result of a strikeout. A batter will never reach base because of a strikeout. When they reach on a WP/PB, that's a result of the WP or PB not the strikeout. Failing to put the ball in play can never result in a positive. When the ball is put in play, there's at least a chance it finds a hole or an error is committed. Those cannot happen due to a strikeout. Therefore, it's a wasted at bat.
I'm not following the "striking out at least meant that you had a chance at a home run." Usually, contact must be made in order to hit a home run! You could ground into a double play on the 1st pitch or the 37th.
I do agree that Sano looks lost. He doesn't really seem to have a plan and I imagine that his chasing pitches out of the zone is a result of guessing and potentially lack of prep (pure conjecture on my part). Something needs to change there.