The Seattle Mariners took care of some important business by agreeing to 2021 contracts with J.P. Crawford, Tom Murphy and Rafael Montero.
It’s been a quiet offseason for the Seattle Mariners for the most part. A fair amount of the attention has focused on whether spring training and the 2021 regular season will start on time.
However, the Mariners took care of some important business last Friday, by coming to terms for the 2021 season with their three remaining arbitration-eligible players. Friday was the deadline for exchanging contract figures to avoid arbitration hearings.
The last time Seattle went to a hearing was in 2014, with Tom Wilhelmsen. The three players who they agreed terms with for the 2021 season were shortstop J.P. Crawford, catcher Tom Murphy and pitcher Rafael Montero.
Of the three Crawford is arguably the most important, after winning his first Gold Glove Award in 2020. He also had a slash line of .255/.336/.338 and stole six bases in 53 games during the season.
The 26-year old had a salary of $575,800 and as per Rhett Bollinger of MLB.com, he is set to make $2.05 million in 2021. He was picked 16th overall in the 2013 draft by the Philadelphia Phillies and traded to Seattle in Dec. 2018.
Murphy did not play last year, due to a fractured metatarsal in his left foot. This proved frustrating for all concerned, after a breakout season in 2019 when he had a slash line of .273/.324/.535 in 75 games, as he hit 18 home runs and added 40 RBI.
The terms of the 2021 deal with the 29-year-old have not been reported at the time of writing. He was picked 105th overall in the 2012 draft by the Colorado Rockies and traded to Seattle from the San Francisco Giants in Mar. 2019.
Montero has yet to play a regular season game for the Mariners, arriving in a trade on Dec. 15 from the Texas Rangers. He was a perfect 8-for-8 in save opportunities during the 2020 campaign, as he posted a 4.08 ERA and 1.02 WHIP in 17.2 innings of action.
As per Bollinger, the 30-year-old will reportedly see his salary increase from $785,000 to $2.25 million this season. His career in Major League Baseball started with the New York Mets, after they signed him as an international free agent in Jan. 2011.
Crawford is eligible for arbitration three more times, while Murphy is eligible twice more. Montero is in his last year of arbitration, meaning he will become a free agent at the conclusion of the 2021 season.
What kind of seasons are you predicting for Crawford, Murphy and Montero? Which of the three do you consider to be the most important to the Seattle Mariners? Let us know in the comments section below.