April was challenging for the Seattle Mariners as they finished with a 12-16 record. While the team played some strong opponents last month, it's no excuse for the team to underperform. Multiple players struggled in the opening month, but here are 3 Seattle players that I am particularly critical of and hope to see improvements from.
Julio Rodriguez didn't meet his superstar standards
I'm going to start off with a bit of a hot take... Julio certainly wasn't the most disappointing Mariners player in April, but he certainly didn't live up to his hype and he knows that himself.
Julio, the face of the Seattle Mariners and arguably the MLB, hit an underwhelming .239 with five home runs, and 13 runs batted in. Rodriguez also struggled in the first 20 games of 2022 so maybe he's just a slow starter?
The 22-year-old talent's advanced metrics aren't showing major red flags but there are areas that are below his 2022 numbers. His barrel percentage was down 3%, wOBA was down 40 points, hard hit rate was down 5 points, and strikeout rate was up 2 points. Like I said, no major red flags and it's still too early in the season to draw conclusions.
Last year, Rodriguez quickly turned things around in May so I am looking to see if he can bounce back in a similar way. The Seattle Mariners certainly need some life after a rough first month and J-Rod needs to lead it. It also doesn't help that Robbie Ray is out for the year and Julio himself is experiencing back tightness.
If Julio Rodriguez isn't able to turn things up a level, the Seattle Mariners are going to be in a lot of trouble because he is the spark plug for this offense. Our typical offensive producers like Ty France, and Eugenio Suarez have been alright, but not good enough to the point where they can carry the entire offense.
For the Seattle Mariners to be a legitimate offensive threat, they need Julio, Ty, Eugenio, Teoscar, and Kelenic to be firing on all cylinders.