Among the early arrivals at Dodger Stadium on Saturday for the 2017 Los Angeles Dodgers FanFest was shortstop and unanimous 2016 National League Rookie of the Year, Corey Seager. He was greeted by plenty of cheers, request for autographs and “M-V-P!” chants.
Seager joined Dodger Talk host David Vassegh on the main stage to discuss the 2016 campaign and look ahead to this season. The session concluded with the unveiling of R.B.I Baseball 2017, which features Seager as the cover athlete.
“Just playing video games growing up, you idolize those guys and to see your face on it is different,” he said of the honor. “Obviously really, really exciting, but I don’t really know how to explain it. It’s surreal.”
Seager was spoke from the visiting bullpen at Dodger Stadium, and in typical fashion downplayed the significance of personal accolades to place an emphasis on the team’s goals.
“Obviously it was something that everybody would like to win, but it’s one of those things that’s not top of the priority,” he said of being named Rookie of the Year. “It’s always about the. We’re looking forward to not being two games away and actually being in the World Series.”
Seager, as others would throughout the afternoon, said he was pleased the Dodgers re-signed their top three free agents and acquired Logan Forsythe to fill the void at second base. As much as Rich Hill, Kenley Jansen, Forsythe and Justin Turner will factor into the Dodgers’ success, so too will Seager.
While Seager undeniably had a strong rookie campaign, he admitted to being affected by fatigue down the stretch of the year. In reality, that wasn’t much of a surprise considering it was Seager’s first brush with playing on an everyday basis that rate.
Experience now gained, the 22-year-old has reason to believe this season will tell a different story. “Beginning of the year, I didn’t really have the routine I wanted,” Seager explained.
“I didn’t really know what to expect, what to do. That was something that Chase (Utley) really helped me with. Throughout the year it got better and at the end of the year it kind of got to where I wanted it to be, so it’ll be nice to be able do that for a full season.
“Hopefully the fatigue doesn’t come back. Having the routine set and being able to do it from day one hopefully will help.”
No matter how lofty expectations may get for the Dodgers’ young shortstop, Seager intends to continue approaching the game with the same focus and mentality that’s put him on a path to stardom.
“I had a lot of talks with my brother, that’s kind of how we’ve been raised. Not to get ahead of yourself, not be up too high, kind of stay even-keeled,” he said.
“So, it’s one of those things that I’ve kind of always done. Now, I’m trying to take that next step and still stay like that.”