Top 15 Mariners of 2023: At #7, Logan Gilbert looks to build on low-key great 2022
After the 2020 draft, Mariners fans were a bit excited. With their recent three first round picks, the Mariners had gone pitcher (Logan gilbert 1-14), pitcher (George Kirby 1-20), pitcher (Emerson Hancock 1-6), and looked to have a solid stable of pitching prospects that might make their mark after 4-5 years. The hope was that they would hit on one of them, cautious optimism that it would work for two of them, and a dream scenario where all three worked out.
Hancock looks to be healthy and back on track, which means that the dream scenario is one step closer to happening. Mariners fans... shoot, baseball fans all over, have been impressed and infatuated with Kirby's control. Personally, it's Walter that does it for me on the mound. Maybe it's the height (I'm the same height as him) or the long hair (reminds me of The Big Unit a bit), but he's my favorite RHP on the roster. I also think he has a legit shot at being in the Cy Young conversation.
Logan Gilbert is #7 on our top 15 Mariners for 2023
Everyone has bad starts, and that has to be taken as a part of the whole when looking at a season. It just so happens that the two bad starts from Gilbert happened in back-to-back outings, both against the Evil Empire. The Yankees roughed him up, and it made for a rough week for Walter.
Here's the thing. When you have two BAD starts in a row like that (9.1 IP, 13 ER) and still finish with a season ERA of 3.20, you had a really good season. That 3.20 mark was 22nd out of all qualified pitchers. Take out the Yankees starts, and that number goes to a 2.71 ERA which would've been 11th in the league.
We've talked a lot about the Mariners rotation, and even started off with Robbie Ray at #8 in our rankings. I was one of the few to actually rank Robbie Ray and Logan Gilbert above George Kirby, although it didn't turn out that way (spoiler?) in our final rankings. I think Kirby might have the higher ceiling, but for now, it's Logan Gilbert that leads the way for me. Between the splitter and the funky slider he has been working on, we could be seeing another step forward in what could be a long and special career from Logan Gilbert.