Mariners Analysis: Top 5 First Round Picks in M’s History
#2 – Alex Rodriguez – SS – Rd. 1 Pick 1 in 1993
Say what you will about Alex Rodriguez, but his stats do not lie. There is no debate that he is the second best player ever drafted by the Seattle Mariners in the first round. A-Rod is the only player ever picked by the Mariners to eclipse the 3,000 hit mark.
A-Rod played parts of seven seasons with the Mariners, hitting .309 with 189 home runs, 595 RBI and 133 stolen bases. He broke in as an 18-year-old in 1995, and in 1997 he won the batting title after hitting .358 with 36 home runs and 123 RBI. Rodriguez became a member of the 40/40 club in 1998, and hit 42 homers in just 129 games in 1999. He represented the M’s at four All-Star Games.
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The Mariners made arguably the biggest blunder in club history when they allowed Rodriguez to leave via free agency as a 24-year-old after the 2000 season. He signed the first mega-deal in sports history with the Texas Rangers before being traded to the New York Yankees in 2004. And he went on to become a national symbol of everything that’s wrong with baseball.
The Miami, Fl native has hit .296 with 690 home runs, 2062 RBI and 328 stolen bases across 22 big leagues seasons. Rodriguez has made 14 All-Star appearances, won 10 Silver Slugger awards, two Gold Gloves at shortstop, and three American League MVP awards.
Had it not been for A-Rod’s drug use and general ‘douchey-ness’, he could have been the most beloved player in baseball history. There has never been a player who excels in more aspects of the game than Alex Rodriguez. For quite a long time, Rodriguez was the best offensive player in the game and he was one of the most gifted defenders at a premium position. However, he has proven throughout his career that the only person who can get Alex out is himself.
A-Rod’s resume demands love and respect from fellow players and fans, but the malignant superstar has embarrassed himself and the sport with his actions. It’s fair to assume his legacy will be closer to that of Barry Bonds than Derek Jeter. The saddest part is that Rodriguez didn’t need the drugs to be great, he already was.
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