Dodgers Rumors: Joc Pederson, Corey Seager Renew Contracts For 2017

Dodgers Rumors: Joc Pederson, Corey Seager Renew Contracts For 2017

Richard Mackson-USA TODAY Sports

The Los Angeles Dodgers’ ushering of Joc Pederson from the Minor Leagues to the Majors in 2014 served as a blueprint of sorts for the organization’s current wave of prospects. Pederson and Corey Seager gained experience the season prior to becoming a full-time player for the Dodgers.

Jose De Leon and Julio Urias were heading down an identical path, but their clocks were accelerated last season due to the Dodgers’ record number of injuries. Pederson had long been pegged as the club’s center fielder of the future.

He’s appeared in at least 137 games in each of the past two seasons. With Pederson set for another season with Los Angeles, he reportedly will earn $20,000 more than the 2017 MLB minimum salary, per Jon Heyman of Today’s Knuckleball:

Seager also appears to have had his contract renewed by the Dodgers, receiving a $65,000 increase from last year’s salary:

Pederson earned a base salary of $520,000 last season. He will be eligible for salary arbitration in 2018. Ender Inciarte’s and Odubel Herrera’s contracts signed during the offseason, both for five years and $30.5 million, provide a rough estimate on what a longterm extension for Pederson would look like.

In 2015, his first full season in the Majors, Pederson slugged his way to stardom in the first half. He was named to the National League All-Star team and also participated in the Home Run Derby.

However, the young center fielder began to skid at the plate heading into the Midsummer Classic, and his struggles carried over into the second half of the year. Pederson lost his standing as an everyday player, becoming a platoon with Kiké Hernandez.

The 24-year-old spent last offseason and Spring Training refining his swing, and saw improved results come the regular season. Pederson cut down on his strikeout rate and finished the year batting .246/.352/.495 with 25 home runs, 68 RBI and a career-best 129 OPS+.

The success, some of which came against left-handers, has the Dodgers expecting to provide Pederson with more at-bats against same-side pitching this season. ZiPS projects he will bat .228/.342/.436 with 24 home runs, 68 RBI, a .360 wOBA and 129 wRC+ in 142 games this season.

Seager has been nothing short of impressive since making his MLB debut in September 2015. That October, he became the youngest position player to start a playoff game in franchise history. Seager carried that success into 2016, batting .308/.365/.512 with 26 home runs, 72 RBI and a 137 OPS+.

He was named the unanimous NL Rookie of the Year selection and finished third in NL MVP voting. Seager’s home run in Game 1 of the 2016 NL Division Series made him the youngest player in franchise history to hit a postseason home run.