Former Dodgers shortstop Corey Seager signed with the Texas Rangers this offseason. Texas simply made Seager an offer he couldn’t refuse. He signed on the dotted line on a massive ten-year, $330 million contract.
He’s an incredible shortstop and is forever a Dodgers legend after winning the 2020 NLCS and World Series MVPs. But did Andrew Friedman and his team make the right call?
Over the last six years, Seager trails on Fernando Tatis Jr. in OPS and WRC+ among shortstops. One could argue he’s the second-best offensive shortstop in the game.
For those that prefer prefer traditional stats, Seager ranks fourth in average (.295), 11th in RBI (347), and seventh in doubles (156).
The counting stats aren’t as pretty as the sabremetrics due to Seager missing significant time in 2018 and 2021.
Injuries are very much part of the Corey story.
The Injury Factor
Seager’s injury history was likely a factor for the Dodgers front office’s decision to let him walk. That being said, it didn’t stop the Dodgers from reportedly offering the slugger an eight-year, $250 million extension last spring. LA wasn’t willing to give him two more years and his penchant for injuries was probably why.
It’s hard to imagine Seager’s year 36 and year 37 seasons being worth the $33 million Texas will be paying him. Another question is where he’ll be playing.
A 36 Year-Old 6’4″ Shortstop?
His defense at shortstop is average-at-best right now. It’s not going to get better with age. Seags has publicly said in the past he does not want to switch to third base. Did Texas convince him to move to third or to DH down the road?
Paying a player in their late 30s to DH typically doesn’t go well. Just ask Angels.
At 6’4”, Seager would join the great Cal Ripken Jr. as the only shortstops at that height to primarily play short at that age. Ripken won two Gold Gloves in his career. Seager is not likely to win one before his playing days are over.
Final Seager Thoughts
Losing a longtime franchise shortstop is never easy. The Dodgers are also the only team to have another All-Star shortstop waiting in the wings. Seager’s departure opens the door to Trea Turner returning to his natural defensive position. Turner did his best at second, but he’s a defensive upgrade over Seager at short.
Committing long-term money to Seager would’ve also added complexity to the Dodgers future plans. It could’ve affected the Dodgers ability to retain Walker Buehler, Julio Úrias, Will Smith, and Cody Bellinger once they’re eligible for free agency. Yes, Mookie Betts is on a massive deal, but Seags is not on Betts’ level.
Seager earned his place in Dodgers lore over his six years in LA. He’s a great player, but Andrew Friedman not signing him for a decade was a wise decision.
What do you think Dodgers fans? Should LA have re-signed Seager?
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