This guy was talked about a little bit this morning, so it’s appropriate that it’s his turn on the Top 20:
9. Kyle Seager
Position: 2B/3B | Hits: L Throws: R
DOB: 11/3/1987 | HT: 5’10″ WT: 175 LB
Notes: Seager was a bit of a conundrum coming out of college in the draft. Regarded as a possibly good hitter but with his defense and power tools in doubt, there was some hope that Seager could become a useful player, but no one was really sure what type of player he would be.
Fortunately for the Mariners’ organization, Seager may have helped put some of those doubts to rest. He showed excellent bat control, and has a good ability to get the barrel of his bat on the ball, helping him drive the ball well to all fields. His approach at the plate is also good, as Seager’s pitch recognition is better than you’d usually expect to see of a player at his level, allowing him to hold off and wait to see a pitch he wants to hit.
Seager’s home run totals that he showed in High Desert, 14 over the year, might wind up being his career-best (though if he makes the majors with Seattle, Safeco Field will be a good power fit for him), but he swing should create plenty of doubles, which is still plenty valuable.
In the field, Seager’s glove will never be a great one, but it could still prove interesting. While he doesn’t have great range, he is a solid defender fundamentally, and can probably wind up being roughly average at second base. He’s also seen a fair bit of time at third base in his collegiate and minor league career so far, as well as a few pro games at shortstop. While he really doesn’t have the athletic acumen to play short, he could probably handle third acceptably thanks to his instincts and solid fundamentals.
What could prove interesting and beneficial to Seager’s value would be to try him in the outfield and see if he can play well there, at least in the corners. As his power and defense might hold him back from a true every day job at any one spot in the majors, his best bet could be to try and become a Mark DeRosa or Willy Aybar type of player. That type of super-sub utility guye can get plenty of playing time by starting at several positions throughout the year as his team has needs.
There’s also an interesting piece of trivia from Seager’s 2010 season. Courtesy of Kevin Goldstein’s M’s prospect ranking for this year, Seager had more games over the course of the year in which he reached base four or more times than he did games in which he never reached base, by a total of nine games to seven. As he played 135 games last year, that’s not half bad at all.
2011 Outlook: Needs to prove 2010 in High Desert was no fluke, and will likely spend most of the season in AA Jackson as a result.
Major League ETA: Mid-to-late 2012