#2 Second Base: There are a mix of infielders fighting for the starting second base position but I think we can upgrade with an offseason acquisition
Ty France was a pleasant acquisition as part of the trade that sent Austin Nola to the San Diego Padres. Taylor Trammell seems to be the biggest return for the Mariners, but both France and Torrens are solid players that were expendable for the Padres.
France finished the season with a .302 batting average and is not too bad on defense, but I would like to see him as a utility player that platoons with different players based on matchups.
Dylan Moore is another player in the mix and he was a nice surprise in 2020 like France. But again he is so versatile and good on defense that I would like to see him come off the bench or be used as a role player. Moore is also useful because he can be the backup for J.P. Crawford at shortstop.
The departure of Dee Strange-Gordon to free agency leaves the second base competition between these two. Tim Lopes could be considered in this competition as well. But as I was saying, having depth off the bench is so important in this day in age with the use of analytics and constantly switching rosters around for favorable matchups.
Having Moore and France off the bench or as platoon players would be a dream because of how good they are. And the Mariners have an opportunity to sign or trade for a star second baseman or close to star status for 2021.
Although unlikely, D.J. LeMahieu is a free agent and a player that would upgrade our lineup dramatically if we were to sign him. LeMahieu would cost a lot but that is the type of player we need to join the core of young players. At some point, we are going to need to add another star and LeMahieu might be the one.
We have not had an everyday starting second baseman since Robinson Cano and LeMahieu could be that guy. There are a few other second basemen on the free-agent that are not quite at the same tier as LeMahieu:
- Jonathan Villar
- Jonathan Schoop
- Cesar Hernandez
Another option would be to sign shortstops on the free-agent market and convert them to second base. Didi Gregorius, Marcus Semien, and Andrelton Simmons are also available to sign.
There are plenty of options to work with to upgrade our second basemen situation. But at the same time, if Dipoto decides not to go for a top tier second baseman, we could settle with France and Moore.