This afternoon the St. Louis Cardinals traded right-handed pitcher Sam Tuivailala to the Seattle Mariners for right-handed pitching prospect Seth Elledge. Who is Seth Elledge? Let’s find out.
Seth Elledge, RHP: The Mariners drafted Elledge in the fourth round in 2017 from Dallas Baptist University. A successful closer in college, he has remained in the bullpen role in pro ball and has been excellent, posting a 1.17 ERA in 38.1 innings this season for Modesto in the High-A California League, with a 54/15 K/BB and just 18 hits allowed.
Elledge is 22 years old, listed at 6-3, 230. From the numbers you would assume he has good stuff but occasional command issues and that’s essentially correct. Clocked as high as 97 MPH in college, he’s worked mainly at 91-94 in pro ball with some higher peaks. Scouting reports give him an average slider overall but it flashes better and his strikeout rate has been excellent this year. He shuts down both left-handers (.133) and right-handers (.143).
The main need is to lower his walk rate as he moves up. I gave him a C+ pre-season and that still seems reasonable. Three years from now Elledge could be a solidly competent bullpen arm similar to how Tuivailala is now.