We’ve talked a bit on the site about some players the Mariners could look to bring in to shore up their hitting. They definitely need an upgrade there, as they finished last in BA (.226), 28th in OBP (.303), and 26th in SLG (.385). There are some good options out there, and one of them could be JD Martinez.
JD Martinez is actually younger than you would think, as he just turned 34. I wouldn’t be surprised if he had another 3-5 years of great hitting left before we started to see a decline. He’s been a bad defender for nearly a decade, but that isn’t why we would sign him. Martinez could easily fill the DH role, and sub in at left field when we want to give other outfielders some rest or a partial night at DH.
The Mariners answer on offense could be to sign JD Martinez
He’s been a great hitter ever since he left Houston (who didn’t think he was good enough), and he
further exemplified that during the last four years in Boston. He hit .297/.369/.548 there, with 114 home runs in about 500 games. His homers were down a bit this year, but that’s because he led baseball with 42 doubles, giving him a total of 73 extra-base hits on the year.
Think of the effect that a consistent and scary bat could have in the Mariners lineup. That brings up everyone around you, as pitchers focus on the stud the most, and are worried about what he is going to do. Imagine something like this…
Now, you can move those around a bit, but that would likely be the top 5. Maybe you throw Abraham Toro in there. Those are all guys that are great hitters, capable of hitting over .250 or hitting 30 home runs. Shoot, some of them do both. You could make the argument that Lewis-Martinez-Haniger could all do it, and France would be too busy ripping shots all over the field and hitting .320 to get 30 home runs.
Back to Martinez, the guy can hit. He’s always shown that. Push it back to 2014 when he got to Detroit, and his slash line hardly changes. .298/.365/.561. That’s the better part of a decade where he has filled box scores and been one of the most dangerous hitters in baseball.
If for some reason, Martinez thinks that he wouldn’t be able to get a good contract, he will stick around Boston. He is on the final year of a 5-$110 that he signed heading into the 2018 season but has an option for $19.35 million for the 2022 season. He’s definitely worth more than that. Hitting numbers are getting worse year by year, but Martinez continues to chug along.
We’ve talked about Nick Castellanos and Michael Conforto, and I’d be okay with either of them. They’re both a few years younger and closer to their prime. Martinez gives off the vibe of a guy who is gonna rake into his late 30’s. The Mariners have shown success in the past at signing a mid-30’s guy to a four-year deal in Nelson Cruz, and I think Martinez could be the next in line.
If the Mariners and Martinez could come to some sort of agreement on a 4/100, I would be totally fine with that. It’s a shortish contract, shores up the lineup, and immediately widens the Mariners window at continuing to contend for a playoff spot.
Think about how nice he would’ve been to have in the lineup this year. Instead of Moore at .181, or the games with Marmo, Shed Long, and Bauers the single machine, we could’ve had Martinez blasting doubles all over Seattle. It’s in my mind for 2022, and I sure would like to see the Mariners sign JD Martinez.