Seattle Mariners: 3 darkhorse candidates to contribute in 2020
By Ty Gonzalez
Mariners fans have been made well aware of the big names in the organization’s farm system, but they’re not the only ones who could have an impact on Seattle’s 2020 campaign.
Atop the Mariners’ laundry list of items in 2020 is supplying several of their top prospects with consistent opportunity at the Major League level, but there’s always the hope of finding success in unexpected avenues. Whether it be a veteran hoping to revitalize their career on a minor league contract, an aging prospect who bursts onto the scene out of nowhere, or a struggling Major Leaguer who’s figured things out, there always seems to be a few players that benefit from a perfect storm each year.
Last year, the Mariners had a few of their own. Austin Nola and Tom Murphy are the two biggest names that jump off the page; the former being a seven-year minor leaguer who finally got his MLB break at the age of 29 and ran with it, while the latter’s career was seemingly coming to a close after several seasons of offensive struggles before arriving in Seattle and finishing the 2019 season as one of the best offensive and defensive catchers in the game.
Murphy and Nola have now gone from lottery tickets to mainstays on Seattle’s roster in less than a year’s time, which begs the question: can the Mariners find something similar this season? Let’s look at a few players who may be able to fit the mold.