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40 in 40: Kyle Seager

Don’t shoot your last horse, okay?

Baltimore Orioles v Seattle Mariners
deserve’s got nothing to do with it
Photo by Stephen Brashear/Getty Images

Dearest Kyle,

Please be good again.


Lookout Landing

It’s hard for many of us at Lookout Landing to be overly critical of Kyle Seager, myself included. After all, he’s the lone survivor of the Mariners draft class of 2009. He’s one of the few drafted Mariners players to find lasting success with the team in the last decade. Seager made it to the majors and stayed as an everyday player in spite of coaching staffs that failed to develop prospects who were far, far more touted and hyped than he was. He’s provided ample highlight reel moments at the plate while providing solid-to-spectacular glove work at the notoriously difficult position of third base (stares wistfully at 2014 Gold Glove Seager bobblehead).

But, our glorious North Carolina boy has grown into a still youthful-looking, yet veteran-aged North Carolina man and his baseball skills have been in steady decline the last two seasons.

per Baseball Reference

We know Kyle works hard. He’s as meticulous and methodical in his approach at third base and at the plate as just about anyone. We heard the quotes about how his errors at third drive him nuts. We’ve seen the frustration bubble over as he’s struggled at the plate.

Just like with Félix Hérnandez, it’s been incredibly hard to watch and stomach a beloved franchise star begin to decline. As fans, many of us ride out denial for as long as we possibly can. “He’ll be fine, he was just dealing with a bad foot” or “Well, if they’d only closed the roof sooner when it started to rain” or “Maybe he needs LASIK surgery?” and on and on and on the excuses and qualifiers go.

Time remains undefeated.

Seattle Mariners v Texas Rangers Photo by Richard Rodriguez/Getty Images

As is, Seager’s 7-year contract extension that he signed at the end of 2014 has provided a massive amount of value for the Mariners. Frankly, we’ve been spoiled as fans to have had an everyday third baseman with a decent-to-All-Star quality bat for as long as we’ve had him. The proof of that can be reflected when you take a gander in horror at the organizational depth chart at third behind Seager.

3B Depth Chart:

  • Shed Long (maybe, but is needed more at 2B)
  • JP Crawford (maybe, but then who will play shortstop?)
  • Tim Lopes (minor league FA in AAA)
  • Joe Rizzo (A)
  • Juan Querecuto (played first season in DSL in 2018)
  • Noelvi Marte (will start in DSL in 2019)
  • And finally, you. Yes, you. You’re at the very bottom of the Mariners 3B depth chart. Stay ready.

So, yes, we’ve been fortunate as fans to have been able to pencil in Seager in nearly every single lineup since 2012(!!!!). And before this starts to become too much of an obituary, Seager is not done yet. I remain confident that he can still provide value this season and perhaps next season at the plate and at third base. If nothing else, I hope he can provide enough value to become a viable trade chip before the deadline. Whatever happens, I’ll be awfully sad when the Kyle Seager, Mariners Third Baseman era comes to an end. But, to quote a god damn “Lord of the Rings” movie, “it is not this day!

In short, we want more of this in 2019.

this was a grand slam he hit in 2018! i know! i completely forgot about it, too!

And less of this.

And less of this:

and more of this:

Don’t leave us just yet, Kyle.