Evan Gattis to the American League West?


According to multiple sources, the Atlanta Braves have traded catcher, corner outfielder, and first baseman Evan Gattis to the Houston Astros in exchange for 3 prospects.

In the deal, the Braves received right-handed pitcher Mike Foltynewicz, third baseman Rio Ruiz and right-handed pitcher Andrew Thurman.

Gattis, 28, is under team control through the 2018 season, and looks to play a dynamic and vital role in the Houston Astros offense.

For much of this offseason, rumors circulated about a possible deal that would have sent Evan Gattis to the Pacific Northwest to become a Seattle Mariner. His still 3 years of service and power right-handed bat profiled perfectly for a Seattle Mariners offense that was starved for right-handed hitting. But alas, with the signing of Nelson Cruz, a pursuit of the Dallas-born slugger fizzled out.

So what can Mariners fans expect from Evan Gattis when he suits up against the Mariners?

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In 2 years of MLB service and 213 games under his belt, Evan Gattis has hit .253/.304/.487 with 43 home runs, 117 RBI, 43 walks in 783 plate appearances. Projected out to a 162 games played average, Gattis would net 29 doubles, 33 home runs, and 89 RBI if he played every single game over the course of the season.

During the 2014 season Evan Gattis played exclusively catcher in the field, with one series– 3 games– at DH. But in 2013 he saw time in left field, at catcher, and also at first base. Last season the righty slugger was worth 2.2 WAR for the Braves.

Though his .404 BABIP is unsustainable against left-handed pitching, Gattis could prove a nightmare for one of the Mariners’ southpaw starters like James Paxton or J.A. Happ. In 73 plate-appearances against lefties Gattis has hit .343/.356/.614 with 5 home runs, 4 doubles, and 14 RBI.

There’s something else to consider with the Evan Gattis trade: do the Mariners make any sort of tactical response? The Angels and Rangers have been relatively quiet this offseason, but the Oakland Athletics have been moving guys left and right while the Astros have been quietly making solid additions to their very young and talented roster.

The Rangers will be better in 2015, so too will the Astros. The Angels will be tough as always, and Oakland will be Oakland and surprise everyone as they always do.

The Mariners have made solid additions this offseason: but are the additions enough to win 90 games and stave off the rest of the division?

Of course the answer to that question will be answered throughout the season. But as of January 14th, the Mariners still have the flexibility, the payroll, and the talent to trade for more.