STEAMER: 2024 is Looking Up for Long-time White Sox Seby Zavala!

Let's check out the projections for one of the forgotten new Mariners for the upcoming season, Seby Zavala

Houston Astros v Arizona Diamondbacks
Houston Astros v Arizona Diamondbacks / Chris Coduto/GettyImages
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Sebastian or Seby Zavala played for the White Sox since the team was selected in the 2015 amateur draft from San Diego State. that is the same school attended by our first baseman, Ty France! He had not spent a full season in Arizona when he was traded to the Mariners.

Zavala looks like he will be Cal Raleigh's backup for catcher, replacing Tom Murphy who will play for the Giants this upcoming season. STEAMER numbers predict that Zavala will have few plate appearances and will have a high strikeout rate which seemed to be part of the reason for not resigning Teoscar Hernandez and for trading Geno Suarez.

Then I went to Baseball Reference to see what type of projection they had for him They are quite different as you can see below.

2024 Season Projections

STEAMER

BASEBALL REFERENCE

At bats

117

282

Runs

11

35

HRs

3

9

RBIs

11

35

Stolen bases

1

3

Walks

8.3 percent

25

Strikeouts

36.3

96 (roughly the same)

Batting Average

.190

.296

On base plus slugging (OPS)

-----

.665

WAR

0.4

_____

I would be happier in the world created for Seby by Baseball-Reference. He has more chances to hit and hits more. While STEAMER did raise Zavala's WAR from .2 to .4, it is unclear whether they saw him playing as a backup or the backup to a backup. In any event, STEAMER projected that he would have so few times at bat that it would be difficult to imagine he could improve from the previous year.

Zavala's History

Zavala's time with the White Sox was varied. For example, his batting average was up and down: .083 in 2019, .183 in 2021, .270 in 2022, and .171 in 2023. His OPS in 2021 was .997 and .996 in 2022. I would not be surprised if the cold and then the heat of Chicago did not interfere with his playing. I think that a new team may just be what Seby needs to return to 2022 form for the Mariners.

A notable story about Seby is that he hit his first three MLB home runs in a single game on July 31, 2023. One of these was a grand slam. We look forward to your first season as a Mariner this coming Spring.