Why the Colorado Rockies should pursue Japanese outfielder Seiya Suzuki

Outside of Shohei Ohtani, outfielder Seiya Suzuki could become one of the most talented players to come to the United States in a long time and the Colorado Rockies could use that talent as much or more than any other MLB team.

The Rockies are in some desperate need of offense and likely, it will have to come from the outfield.

Suzuki, 27, will be posted today to sign with any of the 30 MLB teams but there will be some urgency to sign him as, unlike with other players, teams will only have 30 days to sign Suzuki (December 22).

However, if a lockout happens, as it looks like it will, Suzuki’s clock to sign will be paused so he should have roughly three weeks to sign after the lockout would conclude.

The Colorado Rockies could use an outfielder like Seiya Suzuki

Seiya Suzuki has been playing for the Hiroshima Carp since he was 18 in 2013 and he has had some great seasons with them. If he has similar numbers to what he has had, Suzuki would be a great outfielder for the Colorado Rockies.

In 2021, Suzuki hit .319/.436/.640 in 133 games with 38 homers and 88 RBI. In every year since 2016, he has hit at least .300 with an OBP of .389 and at least 26 homers and 87 RBI per season. That OBP has been at least .436 in each of the last three seasons.

Defensively, he has won four Gold Gloves in Japanese but, as MLB Trade Rumors noted, some MLB scouts don’t necessarily believe he will be an elite outfielder. However, he does a strong throwing arm which means he could profile as a right fielder.

Suzuki has drawn comparisons to Ronald Acuña, Jr. so if he can be anything like him, he would automatically become one of, if not, the best players on the Colorado Rockies.

MLBTR projects that Suzuki as the #20 free agent on the market and they predict will get a five-year deal for $55 million (plus a posting fee just north of $10 million) so that price range will be more in the Rockies’ price range, rather than an outfielder like Nick Castellanos or even Starling Marte or Kyle Schwarber.

The Rockeis should be one of the teams that aggressively pursue Suzuki in the coming weeks due to his offensive ability and his projected salary. It *should* leave them some money to address other weaknesses of the team as well but if recent history is an indicator, the Rockies could be trying to save every dime that they can.