The Tacoma News Tribune is reporting that Seattle Mariners 1B/DH Kendrys Morales is interested in a contract extension in order to “bypass free agency”. Morales is set to become an unrestricted free agent after the MLB playoffs end.
Morales is asking for a multi-year deal from the Mariners to secure his future with the club.
“If it got to the point where we could work something out before I got to free agency,” he said, “I’d have interest in staying. I’m comfortable with the players. I’m comfortable with the direction of the team.” – TNT interview with Morales
The Mariners tried to sign Morales to a three-year $30 million contract extension during the 2013 season — back when he was actually worth a multi-year extension — but he turned them down, and signed a one year deal with Minnesota in June, 14.
Morales has struggled mightily since being signed by the Twins, and he has continued to struggle since being traded to the Mariners. He has hit .217/.268/.332 in 381 plate appearances this season. The designated hitter has a staggeringly low ISO of .114, and has posted a wOBA of .266…that’s not very good.
The good news for Morales is that his struggles at the dish appear to be fueled by a low BABIP of .247, that’s 51 points below his career average. His walk (6%) and strike out (17.3 %) rates this season are well within career norms — which are 6.7% for walks and 17.9% for strike outs.
For the Mariners, the big concern about offering a multi-year deal to Morales is his age, 31. The team should be concerned about him starting his decline soon, as most 31+ year old DH’s don’t exactly age well.