At the conclusion of this season, the Seattle Mariners will be faced with a difficult decision regarding their perennial third-baseman: do they pick up Kyle Seager‘s $15 million option, decline the option and attempt to sign him to a new deal, or decline the option and explore the free-agent market?
Kyle Seager’s fWAR this season is 2.4; does that merit his current salary?
For those unfamiliar with fWAR, it stands for the Wins Above Replacement for a player as calculated by FanGraphs (f). Essentially, the higher a player’s WAR is, the harder it is for a team to replace him with another player. With an fWAR of 2.4, Seager currently ranks 64th among all major league position players and 10th among all third-basemen.
Taking a look at the current salaries among third-basemen in the MLB, Seager’s $18.5 million salary this season is tied for 6th with two other players (the Cardinals’ Matt Carpenter and the Giants’ Evan Longoria). Considering Carpenter has been one of the worst players in baseball this year, and Longoria has barely been able to stay afloat due to injury, Seager’s performance as the 10th best third-baseman in baseball makes his current salary appear reasonable, at minimum.
With Kyle Seager performing at a level consistent with his current salary, let’s take a look at each of those three options that Seattle could pursue with him this offseason: