Seattle Mariners: 3 M’s who could make the All-Star Game

ANAHEIM, CA - APRIL 21: Yusei Kikuchi #18, Dylan Moore #25, Omar Narvaez #22 and Dee Gordon #9 of the Seattle Mariners gather for a photo before the start of the game against the Los Angeles Angels of Anaheim at Angel Stadium of Anaheim on April 21, 2019 in Anaheim, California. (Photo by Jayne Kamin-Oncea/Getty Images)
ANAHEIM, CA - APRIL 21: Yusei Kikuchi #18, Dylan Moore #25, Omar Narvaez #22 and Dee Gordon #9 of the Seattle Mariners gather for a photo before the start of the game against the Los Angeles Angels of Anaheim at Angel Stadium of Anaheim on April 21, 2019 in Anaheim, California. (Photo by Jayne Kamin-Oncea/Getty Images) /
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1B EDWIN ENCARNACIÓN

OAKLAND, CA – MAY 24: Edwin Encarnacion #10 of the Seattle Mariners reacts after striking out against the Oakland Athletics in the top of the second inning of a Major League Baseball game at Oakland-Alameda County Coliseum on May 24, 2019 in Oakland, California. (Photo by Thearon W. Henderson/Getty Images)
OAKLAND, CA – MAY 24: Edwin Encarnacion #10 of the Seattle Mariners reacts after striking out against the Oakland Athletics in the top of the second inning of a Major League Baseball game at Oakland-Alameda County Coliseum on May 24, 2019 in Oakland, California. (Photo by Thearon W. Henderson/Getty Images) /

2019 Stats (through 51 games): .239 AVG, .840 OPS, 13 HR, 34 RBI, 129 wRC+, 1.1 fWAR

By the time July 9 rolls around, Edwin Encarnación is probably calling somewhere other than Seattle home. If Encarnación stays in Seattle or the American League by that point, however, he has a really good shot of making the AL roster as a first baseman.

The 36-year-old not only has shown there’s a ton of life still left in his bat, but he’s also proved he can still play a little defense. After starting just ~20 games at first base in each of his two years in Cleveland, Encarnación has established himself as the Mariners’ de facto first baseman in 2019 and has rewarded their faith with solid contributions in both facets of the game.

This unexpected move back to first in nearly a full-time capacity has now made Encarnación eligible for one of the American League’s weakest positions. If he were serving most of his time as a designated hitter, as expected, we probably wouldn’t be having this discussion.

Right now, the likeliest outcome seems to be that Encarnación and Carlos Santana, whom were traded for one another back in December, will be the American League’s two first baseman in July. Baseball is something else.

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