Mariners Leonys Martin Making Off-Season Offensive Adjustments?
The Mariners have made a lot of changes this off-season, but it seems that some of the mainstay M’s have been making some personal changes as well.
Leonys Martin was one of the bright spots in the lineup late season for the Mariners outside their core of Robinson Cano, Nelson Cruz, and Kyle Seager.
In his debut campaign in Seattle, Martin defied the odds of pitcher-friendly Safeco Field and powered his way to a career-best in home runs.
Unfortunately for him (and the Mariners) as his home runs tally went up, his batting average remained below his career average, although it was 28 points higher than his career-worst batting average from 2015.
Nevertheless, being outdone offensively -which was to be expected when Martin is playing alongside some of the best hitters in the game- seems to have inspired him to improve even more at the plate.
At the Mariners FanFest this past weekend, Martin reportedly told the media that when he was in the Dominican Republic with Robinson Cano, he was there:
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"“learning how to hit.”"
Even if he was saying that kiddingly, he did touch further on what he has done this off-season to improve his numbers at the plate. He went on to tell the press:
"“[I] Tried to get a little bit of a short swing, try to be under control a little bit more at home plate.”"
Martin’s power numbers were a pleasant surprise for the M’s this past year. But, if he can hit as many home runs this year as he did last season and jump up his average another 28 points at least with his new mechanics, the M’s will be very excited to see that type of production coming from the back half of the lineup.
Next: M's To Be A Top Hitting Team?
If Martin’s offensive abilities can come close to his defensive prowess, his play could be a key reason that catapults the Mariners into the playoffs.