Way back when I did a post about the potential for Dustin Ackley and Kyle Seager to become the Seattle version of Dustin Pedroia and Jacoby Ellsbury.
Well we were kinda right.
Seager will never have Ellsbury’s speed, but, except for Ellsbury’s one outlier year, Seager has become a more consistent power and extra-base threat.
Ellsbury just inked a $150 million deal that broke up the partnership with Pedroia.
But would you take Ellsbury over Seager straight up if salary didn’t matter?
Of course, the “senior partner” part of that equation didn’t quite work out on the Mariner side. Ackley continues to limp along as an under-performing left fielder, never sniffing the .800 OPS standard that Pedroia flirts with every year (except 2014, so far).
Anyway, it all came into focus on Tuesday, with the post-Ellsbury Sox lacking punch even against a laboring Erasmo Ramirez.
Seattle, meanwhile, continued to pull its offense out of the arctic zone, with Seager as lead dog.
Here are the amazing Seager stats since the Epic Tide-Turning 11-Pitch-At-Bat Home Run on April 23 that prevented an eight-game losing streak from becoming a nine-game losing streak:
.291/.352/.545 for ISO of .254 and OPS of .897
If not for his awful April before that, he’d be a shoo-in All-Star selection, wouldn’t he? There aren’t any third basemen with .897 OPS as far as I can tell.
And Mike Zunino.
Are there catchers slugging better than Mr. Zuumball right now? Yes. Two. Devin Mesoraco of the Reds (14 HR) and Evan Gattis of the Braves (16 HR), and both of them strike out a lot less than the current version of Zunino.
But wait! Zunino got the early call (fewer than 100 minor-league games) for his defense.
And he outranks both those guys, handily, in all the catching-defense categories. Like this one.
If he can just remember how to walk, he’ll be a monster.
- Baseball-reference.com boxscore here.
- Mariners affiliates scoreboard here.
- Of course, as leif pointed out in the comments, a Royal Flush can be beat by not just Chuck Norris, or by “five aces” (when there’s a wild card), but by Taijuan Walker.
- While e-RAM struggled, Walker made his final argument: 9.0 IP, 4 H, 0 R, 1 BB, 8 K.
- Next time around, I think it will be Erasmo in the Rainier uniform.
- The rehabbers started 1-2-3 in the lineup, but only Justin Smoak got a hit (a double). Michael Saunders walked, and Corey Hart had an “0-fer.” Xavier Nady, on career-rehab, not injury, homered.
- Jack Marder is doing everything he can to stay relevant: .387/.424/.581 in June after going 3-for-3 Tuesday for AA Jackson.
- Jordy Lara had his 12th homer plus a double and single, while not-that Burt Reynolds had two longballs to lead High-A High Desert.
- Edwin Diaz got touched for 4 ER in 5.0 IP in Low-A Clinton’s loss, but Marcus Littlewood got his 5th home run.
- Everett had to go 13 innings to escape with a win, but two 2014 draftees made their mark off the bench: Austin Cousino was 2-for-2 after entering as a pinch-hitter in the 10th; and Kody Kerski had 6 K in 3.2 IP of relief.
- Pulaski managed nine runs with only two extra-base hits (both doubles). They had 10 singles and seven walks, with 2014 draftees Jay Baum and Chase Nyman each drawing three free passes.