David Kohl - USA Today Sports
David Kohl - USA Today Sports

Former Cubs infielder Tommy La Stella signs with Mariners


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SEATTLE, Wash. — Seattle Mariners Executive Vice President & General Manager of Baseball Operations Justin Hollander announced today the Mariners have signed infielder Tommy La Stella to a 1-year Major League contract through the 2023 season.

To make room on the 40-man roster, LHP Justus Sheffield was designated for assignment.

The Mariners Major League, 40-man roster remains full at 40 players.

“Tommy’s makeup, instincts and experience in winning environments will benefit our team as we look to make the next step.” Mariners President of Baseball Operations Jerry Dipoto said. “We value his versatility and strike zone management skills, as well as what I believe to be a high baseball IQ.”

La Stella, 33, has appeared in 9 Major League seasons with Atlanta (2014), Chicago-NL (2015–18), Los Angeles-AL (2019–20), Oakland (2020) and San Francisco (2021–22). In 667 career games, the left-handed hitting infielder is batting .267 (458x1716) with 207 runs, 97 doubles, 5 triples, 40 home runs, 204 RBI and 172 walks.

In 2022, he appeared in 60 games with the Giants, batting .239 (43x180) with 17 runs, 14 doubles, 2 home runs and 14 RBI. La Stella was named an American League All-Star in 2019, hitting .295 (86x292) with 16 home runs and 44 RBI with the Angels. He has also appeared in 24 postseason games with 3 different teams (Cubs, Athletics, Giants) and was part of the 2016 Chicago Cubs team that won the World Series.

La Stella was originally selected by Atlanta in the 8th round of the 2011 MLB First-Year Player Draft out of Coastal Carolina University in Conway, South Carolina. The infielder was traded by Atlanta to Chicago-NL in exchange for RHP Arodys Vizcaíno on Nov. 16, 2014. He was traded by Chicago-NL to Los Angeles-AL in exchange for a player to be named later (minor league LHP Conor Lillis-White) on Nov. 29, 2018. He was traded from Los Angeles-AL to Oakland in exchange for INF Franklin Barreto on Aug. 29, 2020 and signed with San Francisco as a Major League free agent on Feb. 4, 2021.

Sheffield, 26, has appeared in 5 Major League seasons with New York-AL (2018) and Seattle (2019–22). In 48 career games (33 starts), the left-hander is 12–12 with a 5.47 ERA (113 ER, 186.0 IP) with 90 walks and 155 strikeouts. In 2022, he went 1–0 with a 3.86 ERA in 6 appearances (1 start) with Seattle, also making 24 starts with Triple-A Tacoma.

The Tullahoma, Tennessee native was originally selected by Cleveland in the 1st round (31st overall) of the 2014 MLB First-Year Player Draft. Sheffield was traded by Cleveland, along with RHP J.P. Feyereisen, OF Clint Frazier and RHP Ben Heller to New York-AL in exchange for LHP Andrew Miller on July 31, 2016. Sheffield was acquired by the Mariners, along with RHP Erik Swanson and minor leaguer Dom Thompson-Williams (of) in exchange for LHP James Paxton on Nov. 19, 2018. Sheffield earned his first Major League win with Seattle on Aug. 9, 2020 vs. Colorado.

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