The Mariners have outrighted outfielder Mallex Smith to Triple-A Tacoma, the team announced. Smith is now out of their 60-man player pool.
This is the latest setback in the Seattle tenure for Smith, whom the team acquired from the Rays in a trade centering on him and catcher Mike Zunino heading into 2019. Smith was then coming off a highly valuable season as a member of the Rays, with whom he slashed .296/.367/.406 with 40 stolen bases and 3.5 fWAR across 544 plate appearances. For the most part, though, Smith hasn’t come close to replicating those numbers in Seattle. While the 27-year-old Smith has chipped in 48 steals as a Mariner, it hasn’t made up for his shortcomings at the plate. He batted an abysmal .220/.290/.323 with minus-0.5 fWAR over 613 trips to the plate before the M’s outrighted him.
Because of the struggles he has endured in Seattle, Smith has seemingly been out of the team’s plans for a few weeks. He hasn’t played in the majors since Aug. 15, and the Mariners optioned him to their alternate training site Aug. 18. Now, with the offseason nearing and Smith possessing enough service time to opt for free agency, it’s possible he won’t suit up for the Mariners again.