Seby Zavala is not going to be one of the Chicago White Sox 2021 catchers.
In the 12th round of the 2015 draft, the White Sox snagged catcher Seby Zavala. In his senior year at San Diego State, Zavala posted a .936 OPS with 14 home runs and 13 doubles in 64 games. At the time it was safe to assume a player who put up those numbers that were taken in the 12th round was a steal but some things just never pan out.
Zavala has made his way through the White Sox farm system and even made his debut in 2019 at age 25. He only played in 5 games when the team was dealing with some injury issues. In the minors, he has been solid. He impressed with a 1.029 OPS in 35 games at the White Sox rookie league after he was drafted in ‘15.
As he earned his way up the farm system his numbers took a dive. Despite dominating Single-A, Zavala struggled at AA and AAA offensively in 2018. He really saw his struggles at Triple-A Charlotte. In 48 games he hit a.243/.267/.359 slash and a .626 OPS, a career-worst.
While maintaining a .767 OPS as a Charlotte Knight, Zavala’s name was called when Wellington Castillo went down with a head injury. Somehow, he was worse than Castillo as he only recorded one hit in 12 at-bats while striking out nine times. This spring, Zavala has not seen much action. He only three at-bats with a hit but two strikeouts.
Even with the backup catcher roll up for grabs, there are a few players more capable of doing a better job with major league experience. Now at age 27, Zavala is yet to break out and his time could be running out on holding that 40-man roster spot.