Mariners Bright Spot #3: Jarred Kelenic Is Finding His Footing
It was incredibly difficult to watch Jarred Kelenic play in the Major Leagues in 2021 and 2022. Posting a pitiful slash line of .168/.251/.338 for an OPS of .589 over those two seasons, fans began to express legitimate concern over his development. Despite his perceived value as a prospect, would he ever be able to make the jump from AAA to the Show? In response, Kelenic finally gave us a glimpse of what was possible in 2023.
He got off to a scorching start, posting a .982 OPS over his first 101 plate appearances and hitting seven home runs in the same span, the first of which hit the scoreboard at Wrigley Field.
He cooled off as the season went on and had to deal with the infamous kicking-the-water-cooler injury but his cumulative slash of .253/.327/.419 put him slightly above league-average in terms of offensive production. Further improvements to his hitting could be another important factor in improving Seattle's output at the plate and allowing the team to reach the next level.