The Dodgers and Francisco Lindor continue to be linked together by MLB insiders. What does it mean for Corey Seager’s Dodger future?
The 2019 MLB offseason has been underway for a few weeks and the rumor mill is in full force. The Dodgers are a “real possibility” to acquire Francisco Lindor and are expected to pursue Clevland Indians shortstop this off-season.
The Dodgers seem to be looking to re-tool the roster for the upcoming 2020 season. One such name that has been mentioned in a swirl of trade rumors has been Corey Seager. The 2019 season left a stain in the front office as even Andrew Friedman was ultimately disappointed with how short the season ended.
Seager who is a free agent at the end of the 2021 season has had a roller-coaster career. When healthy Seager can easily be a top 5 shortstop in the game of baseball. However, health has been the main concern for Seager.
Seager since making his debut in late 2015 has dealt with many nagging injuries. The worst came during the 2018 season when Seager had a sprain of the ulnar collateral ligament in his right elbow leading to season-ending Tommy John surgery.
Seager has also missed time with nagging hamstring issues along with an injury to the back in the 2017 postseason that left him sidelined in the NLCS against the Cubs. Although, thanks to the Dodgers depth the Dodgers were able to beat the Cubs in 5 games, and also trade for Manny Machado to replace the injured Seager during the 2018 season.
Before Seager’s September callup in 2015 Dodgers, fans were very excited for the young shortstop to finally make his debut. Seager did not disappoint and made the most of his opportunity to become the teams’ full-time shortstop come playoff time. After a loss to the Mets in the NLDS, 2016 would be Seager’s first full season as the primary shortstop, and the rest was history.
Seager went on to win the 2016 NL Rookie of the year award along with a 3rd place finish in the NL MVP voting. 2016 was ultimately Seager’s best year and was also his healthiest. Seager played in 157 games but was also productive with the bat slashing a .308AVG, 40 doubles, 26HR, and 72RBI. Seager nearly matched these numbers in 2017 however, declining in batting average and games played.
Seager’s worst year was 2018 due to injury, however, postseason Seager is also troubling. Like most of the Dodgers core come playoff time the stat line takes a major dip. Most notably the 2019 postseason was a struggle for Seager posting just a .150 batting average with 8 strikeouts. Seager has had some key hits in the playoffs such as the 2016 NLDS with 2 home runs off Nationals pitching and a go-ahead 2-run home run in game 2 of the 2017 World Series against Verlander. Unfortunately as a whole Seager’s play in the postseason has not helped the Dodgers.
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What Does LA Do?
The Dodgers have many options this winter to retool their roster as they see fit. Where that leaves Seager depends on what moves Andrew Friedman makes. If the Dodgers do decide to go big on Lindor and Seager does not make the move to 3rd base then Seager will likely be traded for Lindor or another player.
However, the Dodgers could stick to the plan they have had laid out where Seager is the Dodgers shortstop for years to come. Seager had a very good year after having a year off with arm surgery. If the Dodgers do intend to keep Seager for the 2020 season his play next year could determine if the Dodgers intend to keep him after the 2021 season.
The Dodgers do have to start considering what stars they’ll keep especially after seeing Cody Bellinger win the 2019 NL MVP award. 2020 is a big year not only for the Dodgers but also for Corey Seager’s future with the franchise.