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What will Corey Seager become on the baseball field? Off it? How will Corey Seager perform during his first full season in the Major Leagues in 2016?

Time will tell come Monday, April 4, in San Diego as the Los Angeles Dodgers take on the Padres, through Sunday, October 2, 2016, in San Francisco against the Giants, and every other game in between where he plays. In addition, what about Seager’s playoff performance should the Dodgers win their fourth straight Division title or secure the Wild Card?


ICYMI: Kershaw Threw Perfect Pitch Imperfectly


Significantly, the October 2 game will also be Vin Scully’s last game, where he grew up in Manhattan hearing Giants games on the radio in the Polo Grounds. It will be a fitting end to an illustrious career.

Will Corey Seager have similar longevity and success? Students of the game can only hope.

Let us start with a few statements about players he has been compared to and the legitimacy of such claims with circumstances, facts, and projections.

  1. Corey Seager will be the next Cal Ripken, Jr.

Corey Seager was drafted in the first round (18th pick) of the 2012 Major League Draft as a 6’4”, 215 lb. shortstop out of North Carolina. He comes with a long lineage of baseball talent (his older brothers Kyle and Justin Seager). His career is just beginning having played just 27 games during his inaugural 2015 season. Screen Shot 2016-03-03 at 1.56.38 AM

Cal Ripken Jr. was drafted in the Second Round of the 1978 Major League Draft as a 6’4”, 200 lb. shortstop out of Maryland. He is a Hall of Fame inductee nicknamed the “Ironman” who broke Lou Gehrig’s consecutive games played record.

Ripken began his career during his age 20 season. Seager, his age 21 season. Other than projections and hopefulness, it is truly difficult to project beyond the physical size comparisons.

However, it is of note that Fangraphs/ZiPs projections for Corey Seager in 2016 are nearly identical to Ripken’s Rookie of the Year winning season in 1982.

Corey Seager 2016 ZiPS projections (age 22 season):

PA       R         H         2B       3B       HR      RBI     SB       CS       AVG   OBP    SLG

643      80        158       38         5          20         87         5           1          .266      .311      .447

Cal Ripken Jr. 1982 Rookie Season statistics (age 21 season):

PA       R         H         2B       3B       HR      RBI     SB       CS       AVG   OBP    SLG

655      90        158       32         5           28         93         3           3          .264     .317     .475

A great start for Seager to say the least and of a tremendous help to the Dodgers lineup.  That being said, your first hope should be that Seager plays a full season and does not get injured. Anything beyond that is a plus.

If interested, here is a great article by Dustin Nosler with Dodgers Digest discussing Seager’s 2016 projections further.

  1. Corey Seager will be the next Alex Rodriguez.

Seager is the number one prospect in all of baseball and is the frontrunner to win the Rookie of the Year Award for the 2016 season. Like Ripken and Seager, Alex Rodriguez was also a big shortstop, coming in at 6’3” and 225 lb. However, this may be the toughest comparison because Seager currently and has not throughout his minor league career possessed the home run power that Rodriguez had and still currently possesses. Rodriguez hit 33 homeruns in 2015, his age 39 season. Screen Shot 2016-03-03 at 1.59.55 AM

For example, let us look at the Rodriguez’s statistics just for his rookie season in 1996. We all know what Rodriguez has done throughout his career. Nevertheless, but for the steroid use, he may or may not be a first ballot Hall of Fame candidate.

Alex Rodriguez 1996 Rookie Season statistics (age 20 season):

PA       R         H         2B       3B       HR      RBI     SB       CS       BA      OBP    SLG               

677      141        215       54        1            36         123       15         4          .358     .414      .631

Corey Seager 2016 ZiPS projections (age 22 season):

PA       R         H         2B       3B       HR      RBI     SB       CS       AVG   OBP    SLG

643      80        158       38         5           20        87         5          1           .266      .311      .447

At this point, especially when discussing power numbers, the comparisons between Corey Seager and Alex Rodriguez are limited.  However, Seager does project, when looking at his minor league numbers, to have a similar batting average to Rodriguez (.300+) versus the .276 career batting average of Ripken.  Seager is also more likely to produce a .360-400+ on base percentage, which is more in line with his minor league numbers and his first 27 games in the majors.  Seager projects to be a great ballplayer, but unlikely that he will 600+ home runs.  If he does, terrific.  Seager and the Dodgers would be happy.

  1. Shortstops Corey Seager and Carlos Correa will be the National League/American League version of outfielders Bryce Harper and Mike Trout.

This may be the easiest comparison because factually and statistically Corey Seager and Carlos Correa are in the same line-up, pun intended. It helps that Seager and Correa were both drafted in the First Round of the 2012 Major League Baseball Draft and are less than a year apart in age. Like Alex Rodriguez and Bryce Harper, Correa was the first pick in the draft. Mike Trout was the 25th pick of the 2009 Draft, while Harper was selected one year later in the 2010 draft.  Trout is a little more than a year older than Harper.

We know the exploits of Trout. He has finished first or second in Most Valuable Player voting for the first full four seasons of his career. Harper had a breakout year in 2015, nearly doubling his statistical output in every offensive category. In 2015, Harper added fifty plus points to his batting average, one hundred plus points to his on base percentage, and played in more games than ever before in his early career. Screen Shot 2016-03-03 at 2.01.27 AM

For his performance, Harper was rewarded with the Most Valuable Player Award in the National League. Like Trout, he also won the Rookie of the Year Award in 2012 in their respective leagues. Trout and Harper have been compared to each other since the draft, their minor league days, and it continues today.

It is the same comparison story for Seager and Correa. Correa is the nearly the same size as Seager at 6’4”, 210 lb. and some say they are friends. They often spoke at draft events and their names have been spoken about together for some time. Here are the statistical comparisons.

Carlos Correa 2015 Rookie Season statistics (age 20-21 season):

PA       R         H         2B       3B       HR      RBI     SB       CS       BA      OBP    SLG  

432      52         108      22        1            22         68        14         4          .279      .345     .512

Corey Seager 2016 ZiPS projections (age 22 season):

PA       R         H         2B       3B       HR      RBI     SB       CS       AVG   OBP    SLG

643      80        158       38        5           20         87         5           1           .266     .311      .447

Corey Seager 2015 Rookie Season statistics (age 21 season):

PA       R         H         2B       3B       HR      RBI     SB       CS       AVG   OBP    SLG

113       17         33         8           1            4           17         2          0           .337     .425      .561

Correa, like Seager is projected to do in 2016, won the Rookie of the Year Award for 2015. If Seager puts up the ZiPS projections, it is almost certain he will win the Rookie of the Year based on what Correa had to do statistically to win it. It is of note that Seager’s career minor league batting average and on base percentage is in line with his actual 2015 short season statistics, not the ZiPS projections.

Keep Reading: So, what kind of numbers does Dodgers Nation predict for Seager in 2016?
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About The Author

Editorial Writer
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Jeremy M. Evans is the Managing Attorney at California Sports Lawyer®, representing sports, entertainment, and business professionals in their contract, negotiation, and intellectual property matters. Evans is an award-winning attorney and community leader based in Los Angeles.

9 Responses

  1. AlwaysCompete

    Seager has a few things going for him.  He has an older brother who has made the transition from hype to $100MM contract.  If things go sideways, Kyle will always be there for Corey.  Seager will have a coaching crew that will be more supportive and more hands on than the previous regime.  Roberts is a master communicator and motivator, and Chris Woodward is an outstanding infield coach.  Woody has already spoken to Kyle about Corey, and should be able to better relate than Lorenzo Bundy or Davey Lopes.  Corey’s upbringing will help to keep him grounded.  Corey will not let any success go to his head.  I do not know if Seager will win the ROY, Steven Matz also has hype as does Trea Turner.  But that is not what will drive him.  I cannot remember the last time I was this excited about a rookie position player (maybe Piazza).

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