Mariners Player Profile: Chris Taylor.
The glut of middle infielders for the Seattle Mariners continues to impress. Today I would like to profile one of these young guns, Chris Taylor.
Taylor is 6′ 0″ 170 lbs. He was a 5th round selection in 2012 (#161 overall) out of the University of Virginia. He was the Mariners 2013 Minor League Player of the Year after hitting .314 with 100 runs scored, 28 doubles, 11 triples, 8 home runs, 60 RBI, 84 walks and 38 stolen bases in 134 games combined between Jackson and High Desert. He scored 108 runs, good enough for 3rd best among all minor league players.
He played some outfield in college, however he is primarily a shortstop who can play 2nd or 3rd base.
After last season he was sent to Peoria to play in the Arizona Fall League, where he hit .294 with a .351 on-base percentage, outhitting, among others, Stefen Romero.
Mariners Minor League coordinator Chris Gwynn says “”He’s a young infielder, a shortstop that still has a lot to learn. But he’s really smooth, with an easy gait to how he does everything. And he’s pretty athletic, too. So he’s just going through things everybody does as Minor Leaguer. He’ll make his errors and have lapses now and then, but that’s normal.”
He will most likely start at Double A Jackson, where last year he played in 67 games. He hit .293, scored 46 runs, and stole 18 bases. He did commit 13 errors at short, plus another 5 at second base, so he will have some work to do defensively.
Barring a setback in his hitting progression he should make the jump to Triple A Tacoma at some point, most likely finishing out the year there.
I wouldn’t be surprised if he makes push next years spring training to earn a roster spot, however he has some pretty impressive road blocks in Brad Miller/Nick Franklin and Robbie Cano in the middle infield, and with Kyle Seager and D.J. Peterson at the hot corner. I don’t foresee him pulling a Dustin Ackley and moving to the outfield, so his future in Seattle comes with some questions, though it does look very bright.