Mariners: 3 Options to Improve Center Field Defense
Kevin Pillar could bring veteran leadership, postseason experience, and above-average center field defense to a young Mariners team in 2022.
The New York Mets decided not to pick up 33-year-old center fielder Kevin Pillar‘s $6.4 million team option this offseason, while Pillar opted against accepting a $2.9 million player option, making him a free agent heading into the 2022 season.
Pillar has shined defensively throughout his career, posting an outstanding 14.4 DEF in 2015 while with the Toronto Blue Jays, and exhibited above-average defense with the Mets in 2021 with a 1.1 DEF in over 400 innings in center field.
Last season, Pillar posted an underwhelming .692 OPS, but if his primary slot in the Mariners’ batting order was in the 7-9 range, his veteran presence and defensive prowess would make him an obvious improvement over the likes of Dylan Moore or Jake Fraley as an outfield regular.