Report: Mariners checked in on Benintendi
Benintendi fits a specific need for Seattle as a hitter with high on-base abilities. He posted an OBP above .350 in three of his five full big-league seasons, including a career-best .387 mark last year. While he doesn't hit for a ton of power, his line-drive swing and Gold Glove-caliber defense could play well at spacious T-Mobile Park.
The 28-year-old was named an All-Star for the first time in 2022, posting a solid .304/.373/.399 slash line with five homers and 51 RBIs across 126 games split between the Kansas City Royals and New York Yankees. Benintendi also continued to play solid defense in left field.
However, his production fell off slightly after being traded to New York, and he suffered a season-ending injury in early September when he broke his hamate bone.
Benintendi could present an upgrade for the Mariners in left field over Jarred Kelenic. He'd also likely cost less than Brandon Nimmo, another star free-agent outfielder Seattle has been connected to this winter.
The Mariners already made one splashy outfield addition this offseason, acquiring Teoscar Hernandez from the Toronto Blue Jays earlier in November.
Benintendi owns a lifetime .782 OPS with 73 homers and 384 RBIs across parts of seven seasons with the Yankees, Royals, and Boston Red Sox. The former seventh overall pick helped lead Boston to a World Series title in 2018 and won a Gold Glove with Kansas City in 2021.