Why Did Kyle Lewis Get Traded?

Frank Jones

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Why Did Kyle Lewis Get Traded

Kyle Lewis, the former first-round draft pick of the Seattle Mariners, was traded to another team in the MLB during the offseason. Lewis had been a rising star for the Mariners, winning the American League Rookie of the Year award in 2020.

However, despite his success on the field, the Mariners made the decision to trade him. In this blog post, we will explore the reasons behind Kyle Lewis’ trade and what it means for his future in the MLB.

We will analyze the impact of his injury struggles, the Mariners’ roster setup, and his contract status on the trade decision. Ultimately, this post will aim to shed light on the complex nature of trade decisions in professional sports and how they are impacted by various factors.

Kyle Lewis’ Injury Struggles

Kyle Lewis’ right knee injury dates back to his time in the minor leagues, where he first suffered a torn anterior cruciate ligament (ACL) in 2016. He underwent surgery and missed the majority of the following season.

In 2018, he experienced another injury to the same knee, requiring additional surgery. Then, in February 2021, during Spring Training, he had a setback with his knee and required a third operation.

The injury to Lewis’ right knee has had a significant impact on his playing time and ability. While he was able to make his debut in 2019, he missed a significant amount of playing time in his first season due to the injury.

In 2020, he was able to play in only 58 of the Mariners’ 60 games due to injury. The injury also limited his mobility in the outfield, which made it difficult for him to play his natural position. As a result, he was primarily used as a designated hitter in 2020 and 2021.

While the designated hitter (DH) role allowed Lewis to continue playing, it also had its limitations. The DH position is limited to American League teams and can only be used for one player at a time.

It also restricts the flexibility of the team’s lineup and can make it difficult to rotate players in and out of the lineup. Additionally, the DH role does not allow for defensive contributions, which may have limited Lewis’ overall value to the team.

Mariners’ Roster Setup

The Mariners’ team needs and roster construction may have played a role in the decision to trade Kyle Lewis. The Mariners have been in a rebuilding phase and have been focused on developing their young players.

They also have a crowded outfield situation with a mix of young and veteran players, including Mitch Haniger, Taylor Trammell, and Jarred Kelenic. The team may have felt that Lewis was not the best fit for their current roster and needed to make room for other players.

Despite his Rookie of the Year award, Lewis’ fit in the Mariners’ outfield situation may have been questionable due to his injury and limited mobility. The team may have felt that they needed more defensively capable outfielders to support their pitching staff.

Additionally, with the emergence of younger outfield prospects, such as Trammell and Kelenic, the Mariners may have been more willing to part ways with Lewis.

Financial considerations may have also played a role in the Mariners’ decision to trade Lewis. As a first-year arbitration-eligible player, Lewis would have been due for a raise in salary, which could have been a factor in the team’s decision to trade him.

Additionally, with the uncertainty surrounding Lewis’ injury and his ability to play outfield, the Mariners may have felt that trading him was the best financial decision for the team.

Kyle Lewis’ Contract Status

Kyle Lewis was in his first year of arbitration eligibility at the time of the trade. This means that he had completed three years of service time in the MLB and was eligible to have his salary determined by an arbitration process if a contract agreement could not be reached with the team.

With Lewis being out of minor league options, the Mariners had few alternatives to using him as a designated hitter or keeping him on their roster.

The team may have also considered other options, such as trying to trade him for other assets or releasing him outright, but they likely would have received less value in return for Lewis.

The trade may have been seen as a solution for both the Mariners and the team that acquired Lewis. The Mariners were able to receive value in return for Lewis, which may have included younger players or prospects that they felt were a better fit for their roster.

Meanwhile, the team that acquired Lewis may have seen him as a valuable addition to their roster, despite his injury history, and were willing to take on his contract and arbitration eligibility. The trade allowed both teams to address their respective needs and concerns.

The Trade

The trade details involved the Mariners sending Kyle Lewis to another team in exchange for one or more players. The specific details of the trade, including the team involved and the players exchanged, are not provided in the prompt.

The Mariners’ return in the trade would have been a key factor in evaluating the trade’s overall value to the team. The team may have received younger players or prospects that they believed were a better fit for their roster and could contribute to their long-term success.

However, without knowing the specific details of the trade, it is difficult to assess the Mariners’ return.

The impact of the trade on Kyle Lewis and the Mariners would have been significant. For Lewis, he would be moving to a new team and potentially a new role or position. He would also be adjusting to a new environment and teammates, which can be challenging for any player.

For the Mariners, the trade would have had a significant impact on their roster and their plans for the future. Losing a talented player like Lewis could have both short-term and long-term implications for the team.

However, the team may have felt that the trade was necessary to address their roster needs and position the team for future success.

Kyle Lewis’ Trade – Key Factors and Impacts

Key FactorsImpacts
Kyle Lewis’ injury strugglesLimited playing time and mobility, potential trade value decrease
Mariners’ roster needs and constructionLimited options for Lewis’ DH role, potential need for different position or player
Financial considerationsArbitration eligibility and potential cost savings
The trade itselfPotential return on investment, impact on Lewis and the Mariners

This table summarizes the key factors and impacts involved in the trade of Kyle Lewis. The key factors include Lewis’ injury struggles, the Mariners’ roster needs and construction, and financial considerations such as Lewis’ arbitration eligibility.

The trade itself is also a key factor, with potential impacts on the return on investment for the Mariners, as well as the impact on Lewis and the team as a whole.


What was the reaction of Mariners fans to the trade of Kyle Lewis?

It’s difficult to say for certain without survey data, but many Mariners fans were likely disappointed to see a talented player like Lewis leave the team. However, others may have been more understanding of the team’s decision given Lewis’ injury struggles and the team’s overall roster needs.

Did the team that acquired Kyle Lewis take on his injury risk?

Yes, any team that acquired Lewis would have taken on his injury risk, as well as his contract and arbitration eligibility.

What was the value of Kyle Lewis in the trade market?

It’s difficult to determine the exact value of Lewis in the trade market without knowing the specific details of the trade. However, Lewis was a talented player with Rookie of the Year honors and potential for future success, which likely made him a valuable asset in trade discussions.

Did the Mariners explore other options before trading Kyle Lewis?

It’s possible that the Mariners explored other options before trading Lewis, such as trying to trade him for other assets or releasing him outright. However, the team ultimately decided that a trade was the best course of action.

What impact did the trade have on Kyle Lewis’ career?

It’s too early to say for certain what impact the trade will have on Lewis’ career, as he is still a young player with potential for future success. However, the trade may have given Lewis an opportunity to play a larger role on a different team or in a different position, which could ultimately benefit his career.


The decision to trade Kyle Lewis would have involved a complex evaluation of many factors. Lewis’ injury struggles and limited mobility in the outfield may have contributed to the Mariners’ decision to explore trade options.

The team’s roster construction and financial considerations, including Lewis’ arbitration eligibility, would have also played a role in the decision.

Ultimately, the trade would have had a significant impact on both Lewis and the Mariners, and the success of the trade will depend on the return the Mariners received and the future performance of both Lewis and the players acquired in the trade.

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