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Looking three seasons ahead, the Seattle Mariners will likely receive even more assistance from the farm system. Let’s how the 2025 lineup and starting rotation might look like if we avoid external acquisitions. We won’t assume player opt-outs, but we’ll assume rather obvious club and player options, where applicable.
1B: Ty France
France is currently under club control through the ’25 season and the lone internal challenger at first base over the next three years is Evan White. If White hits, perhaps he plays some outfield, and/or France moves part-time to DH, or a bit of both in order to get both hitters into the lineup. Otherwise, this is France’s spot for a while.
2B: Abraham Toro
With Adam Frazier currently set for free agency following this coming season, Toro is the easy choice here. He went from 40-grade at second base to near-45 in a matter of a month, so it’s conceivable he could quickly get to 45 and beyond, considering his greatest shortcoming playing the position point toward the nuances that come with experience.
His bat is promising, yet still unproven, but within the organization at present, there’s no legitimate second-base answer within three seasons of the majors.
3B: Milkar Perez
Perez’s current ETA is about 2025, and though I’d be less than confident he’s ready to start that season in the majors, it’s not out of the realm of possibility. Whether or not Perez stays at third base is as big a question, and while the hit tool is his best attribute, we’ll have to see if he hits for the kind of power clubs typically prefer at the hot corner.
SS: Noelvi Marte
J.P. Crawford‘s club control runs out following the 2024 season, and while I’d wager an extension by then, we’re not making those assumptions here. Marte could start his big-league career at shortstop, but he’s not staying there long-term, and personally I don’t see much more shortstop in him beyond, well, now. But he has done enough to believe he stay on the dirt and third base appears ideal for his size, athleticism, and arm strength.
The club has no other shortstop with a real chance to hit the show before Edwin Arroyo‘s ETA in the middle of 2026, so Marte it is. We know about the potential with the bat, and 2025 is about the soonest I can see him taking over a starting role in the majors.
C: Cal Raleigh
Harry Ford carries a 2025 ETA for me, but more than likely it’s sometime after the start of the season, and if he gets to the bigs that quickly there’s a better chance it comes with Ford playing third base or the outfield. I’m leaving him behind the dish, but he’s not taking Raleigh’s job this quickly.
OF: Julio Rodriguez
By the time 2025 comes, Rodriguez will have two-plus years of experience and if things work out the way he and the Mariners are hoping, he’s an All-Star with flashes of MVP-like play.
OF: Jarred Kelenic
Despite the presence of other outfield possibilities in the system — including Ford, George Feliz, Gabriel Gonzalez, Lazaro Montes, Zach DeLoach, and Alberto Rodriguez, it’s difficult to see Kelenic not performing enough to be the everyday left fielder, with star-level play still within reach.
OF: Kyle Lewis
Lewis will be in his final season before becoming free-agent eligible — provided the CBA doesn’t change the six-year threshold — but considering Mitch Haniger‘s contract situation I’d expect Lewis to remain an outfield stalwart unless the club lands trade or free agent help that bumps the former first-round pick to DH or another organization.
DH: Luis Torrens
Considering the fact Haniger isn’t under contract beyond 2022 and this is a year or two too soon to expect Montes, Michael Arroyo, Gonzalez or Ford to force the issue from the get-go, Torrens hangs onto this role here. If he’s abigger part of the catcher situation, Rodriguez would beat out White for the spot in the lineup.
Yes, this means I’d bet on Rodriguez hitting enough to warrant somewhat-regular time than White at this point, though that can quickly change if the latter shows an improved swing in Triple-A for an extended period. Rodriguez’s timeline works out for 2025 pretty well, and there are lots of reasons to like his chances to hit for enough average and get on base, though he has relatively limited power upside for the DH spot.
SP: Robbie Ray
Just as we’re assuming no outside acquisitions or contract extensions, we’ll assume Ray does not opt out of his contract following the 2024 season. He’ll be 34 at this point, but there’s no reason to think he won’t be a positive and significant part of the rotation in 2025.
SP: Logan Gilbert
Gilbert will be in Year 5 by this point, and it’s my estimate he’ll have a contract extension by then, but the club has the right-hander trough the 2027 season, so he’ll be a horse for the Mariners for some time.
SP: George Kirby
While there’s work to be done this season and next for the right-hander, Kirby’s in line for a 2023 Opening Day spot in the rotation, and almost certainly makes his big-league debut in 2022.
SP: Marco Gonzales
Gonzales’ current contract runs through 2024, but the Mariners have a $15 million club option for 2025. We’re assuming here they pick that up, though we won’t have a good idea about the chances of that happening until we see the left-hander pitch in 2024.
Gonzales will be 33 to start the ’25 campaign, which isn’t old by any stretch, and because he’s never relief on velocity to get outs there’s no real reason right now suggesting he won’t be a very good No. 4 starter, still, three years from now.
SP: Emerson Hancock
The other options here include Matt Brash, Levi Stoudt, Brandon Williamson, Adam Macko, and Connor Phillips, but as long as Hancock shakes the shoulder fatigue he battled last summer and gets back on track in his development, he’s the easiest to see getting to and sticking in the rotation for 2025.
Williamson, Brash, and Stoudt are ahead of Hancock in terms of ETA, but Brash and Stoudt may end up in the bullpen for various reasons, and if we assume Williamson versus Hancock, I’m taking the arm with the most upside, and the former first-round pick just edges out the lefty here.
|1||Robbie Ray (L)|
|2||Logan Gilbert (R)|
|3||George Kirby (R)|
|4||Marco Gonzales (L)|
|5||Emeron Hancock (R)|
Jason A. Churchill
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