This is going to be one of the most interesting offseasons in quite some time for Mariners fans. The team has a strong farm system, is coming off a great season, and has a low payroll heading into 2022. Seattle is likely to be more of a destination than it has been in the past for potential free agents. If the team strikes out on the top-tier guys, I think Eduardo Escobar would be a fantastic option.
Ever since he started getting regular playing time in Minnesota, Eduardo Escobar has been a good MLB player. He’s not going to win the MVP, he’s not going to win a Gold Glove, and he’s probably not even going to win a Silver Slugger. What he is going to do, and this is something the Mariners need and that fans should want, is give you average to slightly above average defense, the ability to play multiple positions, and a pretty good bat.
It’s that last part that I want to emphasize. What was the common worry last year with the Mariners? It was the offense. Back in May when Ty France went on the injured list, the Mariners were repping the worst batting average of all time, and it wasn’t even close. They were hitting .197 as a team.
Eduardo Escobar could provide the Mariners with a massive offensive upgrade
I wanted them to go after Escobar back at the trade deadline. Instead, he ended up going to the Brewers where he would put up a slash line of .268/.342/.458 in 179 AB, with six home runs and 12 doubles. He also had a K rate of just under 20%.
I’m throwing out 2020 for Escobar, like I have done with most players when it seems to be outside of their regular production. From 2017-19, Escobar hit .266/.322/.486, averaging 26 home runs, 31 doubles, 77 runs, and 92 RBI. Think about who was on the team last year, and the numbers that they put up collectively. You could argue that those numbers from Escobar would’ve made him the third most valuable hitter on the team behind France and Haniger.
If Seager truly is gone, there is going to be an opening in the infield. Escobar can play 2nd and 3rd, so depending on how the team feels about Abraham Toro, you could put them in the spots you think they’ll be most efficient in.
When it comes down to money, I think Escobar might actually be a bit cheaper than people think. He signed a 3 yr-$21 million deal with Arizona prior to the 2019 season. He seems to have more consistent power now, which will bring up his price a bit. Even doubling his contract seems like a pretty good value, and 3-42, with that kind of production and versatility, would be a good pickup for the Mariners.
As the offseason progresses, I think all Mariners fans are hoping that the team can hit on a couple of big name free agents. If they end up signing Eduardo Escobar, I think we should all be happy in realizing that the Mariners vastly improved their offense, and were efficient in doing so.