Logan Keith Gilbert
Height: 6'6" Weight: 215 lbs.
Bats/Throws: Right / Right
Born: 05/05/1997 in Winter Park, Florida
College: Stetson University
MLB Debut: 05/13/2021
Acquired: Drafted 2018 (1st round)
Free Agent after: 2027 season
Awards: AL Pitcher of the Month (April 2022)
Twitter handle: @logangilbert22
He may have delivered mixed results as a rookie in 2021, but this season Logan is pitching like an ace. Even with a rough stretch in May, when he picked up his two losses thus far and a pair of no-decisions, his efforts have never left the M's scrambling; at worst, he's kept his team within striking distance before turning things over to the relief corps. At this writing, Gilbert ranks 6th in the league in ERA, 8th in strikeouts, and 5th in innings pitched, positions that look to only get better as the year goes on. His best start to date came against the hated Houston Astros, when he beat José Urquidy with seven shutout innings, no walks, and five Ks en route to a 6-0 Seattle victory.
Prior to last year, Logan Gilbert had essentially one season of professional experience, playing at three levels of the low minors in 2019. He did play college ball, throwing 250 innings over three years for Stetson and impressing scouts to the degree that the Mariners drafted him 14th overall in 2018, but it was still a lightning-quick rise through the ranks that had him making his big-league debut last May. Despite his fantastic pedigree, being dropped into the deep end of the Major Leagues with only ten games of experience above Class-A ball is a tough ask, and Logan was predictably creamed in his first couple of outings. Still, he had the stuff to compete, and after a while he showed flashes of excellence. He still got hammered now and then, but the beatings were mixed in with previews of what might come to pass, and now with more than 100 Major League innings under his belt the young Floridian is poised for a breakout season.
Putting his considerable brains to work, Gilbert spent the offseason analyzing what worked and what didn't in his rookie campaign and determined that his fastball is fine—it hits the high 90s with regularity—but his offspeed offerings needed some attention. He went to his alma mater once a week to throw, refining his pitch grips and release points to form a more reliable repertoire beyond the blazing heater. Last year's changeup? Gone, replaced with a new grip. Varying the fastball? Failed, but led to a discovery. “That didn’t work out great,” he said of the cut-fastball experiment. “But I actually used that grip and morphed it into my harder slider. It’s just holding it like a fastball and thinking fastball.” He now has an arsenal of the standard four pitches—fastball, curve, slider, and changeup—that he has confidence in. Of his rookie season, he said “It had its ups and downs, and there was a ton of learning the development along the way.” And after the offseason refinements? “I feel great. I feel like I’ve gotten a lot better already, kind of settled in, like I know what it’s about up here.”
Could be a very exciting year for this brilliant righty.