Seager close to seven-year contract extension
The Mariners have yet to sign a free agent this offseason, but they are on the verge of wrapping up another one of their own stars for the next seven years as third baseman Kyle Seager is close to agreement on a seven-year, $100 million deal that would keep him in Seattle through 2021.
Seager, 27, earned his first American League All-Star and Rawlings Gold Glove awards last season while hitting .268/.334/.454 with a team-leading 25 home runs and 96 RBIs in 159 games.
Seager is just entering his first arbitration season and isn’t eligible for free agency until 2018, so the deal will buy out his three arbitration years as well as the first four years of free agency, with an additional eighth-year club option that could go as high as $20 million with incentive clauses.
The agreement was first reported by Jeff Passan of Yahoo Sports and since confirmed by MLB.com. The Mariners have not confirmed the agreement and had no comment on Monday. Club policy is to not comment on pending deals until after a physical exam is completed and a contract is officially signed, which likely won’t be until next week at the earliest.
The Mariners have been working on extending Seager’s contract over the past few months, wanting to wrap up a player who has emerged as one of their cornerstones since his arrival in 2011.
Seager, who made $540,000 last year, would become the third-highest paid Mariner behind second baseman Robinson Cano and ace Felix Hernandez. Cano signed a 10-year, $240 million deal in free agency last year, while Hernandez has five years remaining on a seven-year, $175 million extension he agreed to in 2013.
Seager was a third round Draft pick by the Mariners in 2009 out of North Carolina and moved up quickly through Seattle’s Minor League system. He joined the Major League club midway through the 2011 season and has put up a .262/.328/.429 slash line in 3 ½ seasons.
Seager has proven durable as well as dependable, sitting out just 12 games over the past three years while averaging 22 home runs and 84 RBIs. He took a big step forward defensively as well this past season, setting a club record .981 fielding percentage and winning his first Gold Glove.
Once the deal is culminated, Seager will be the fourth Major Leaguer to sign a $100 million deal in their first season of arbitration eligibility, joining Mike Trout, Buster Posey and Freddie Freeman.