A stellar performance puts an end to Mariners' Second Base saga

Third Base and Second Base were positions of uncertainty for the Mariners. A stellar performance has put the Second Base debate to bed for 2024

San Francisco Giants v Seattle Mariners
San Francisco Giants v Seattle Mariners / John E. Moore III/GettyImages

We are less than two weeks from opening day when the Seattle Mariners will take on the Boston Red Sox. While we can count the remaining Cactus League games on two hands, most of the roster is set. Manager Scott Servais has likely already named Luis Castillo the #1 starter. Cal Raleigh will provide the stabilizing force behind the plate, and superstar centerfielder Julio Rodriguez should flash a few no-fly signs as he patrols the T-Mobile Park outfield grass. Questions remain in the bullpen thanks to critical injuries (Matt Brash, Gregory Santos) and spring training struggles (Austin Voth). On to the week three headlines! 

Mariners play most complete Cactus League game 

Despite a challenging start to Cactus League play, the Mariners have shown remarkable resilience, gradually finding their rhythm. It was reminiscent of the 2019 regular season, where the pitching and hitting often needed to align and took time. However, this spring, the hitters are starting to find their stride, leading to the team's impressive four wins in their last six games. One of those victories occurred this past Wednesday against a Los Angeles Dodger team earmarked for a World Series bid. The Mariners brought their bats for this one, hammering eight hits for four runs off the Dodgers' prized free agent, Yoshinobu Yamamoto. 

While the starters did the initial damage against Dodger pitching, the prospects, mainly all three 2023 draft picks Colt Emerson, Jonny Farmelo, and Tai Peete, as well as a couple of 2022 international signees, Lazaro Montes and Michael Arroyo, showcased their potential by putting an additional five runs on the Dodger bullpen. 

Jorge Polanco continues scorching spring

After his blockbuster trade with the Minnesota Twins, General Manager Justin Hollander spoke extensively about his affinity for acquiring Jorge Polanco. The impetus behind the deal was finding a solution for a nearly five-year problem at the keystone. If Polanco's spring performance indicates his viability to fill the role, Hollander should be ecstatic. 

The 30-year-old infielder is slashing a stellar .400/,520/1.270 across ten Cactus League games. 

Top prospects sent to Minor League Camp

The Mariners entered spring training with an easily projectable roster, meaning there were few open spots besides a couple of bullpen roles. The domino effect includes prospects getting late-game action without the possibility of breaking camp with the big league club, which could be disheartening for youngsters Cole Young, Harry Ford, and Tyler Locklear. Fortunately, the three still made noise this spring and learned more. 

The Mariners optioned all three to minor league camp this week as they prepare for opening day with the Arkansas Travelers later this month.