The Seattle Mariners and Evan White have agreed on a six year, $24 million contract, per multiple reports. The deal includes three club options, meaning that White is potentially under team control through 2028.
White, a 23 year old first baseman, was the Mariners’ first round pick in 2017 out of the University of Kentucky, going #17 overall. He slashed .293/.350/.488 in 400 plate appearances for Arkansas in the Texas League in 2019.
White is listed at #73 in the current Baseball America top 100 list, with BA calling him “an elite glove at first base,” and giving him 55 hit and power grades. He’s probably not going to be a dominant hitter, but the combination of the quality glove and solid bat makes him a reasonable bet to produce going forward, and he will presumably be the Mariners’ starting first baseman in 2020.
One can question this deal both from the side of the club, given they are guaranteeing $24 million to a player who spent 2019 in AA, and from the side of the player, since he’s forfeiting the chance to make significantly more money if he plays through arbitration and hits the open market than he will make under this deal, even if the options are picked up. This seems like a very team-friendly deal, but it gives White lifetime security, so I can’t really cast stones for him opting to take this deal.