Catcher Cal Raleigh will forever be known as the guy who ended the drought and rightfully so. However, he continues to make history or at least Seattle Mariners' franchise history. Raleigh joined some elite company when he belted a two-run homer against the Kansas City in the second-inning last night.
Raleigh's missle was his 50th since getting called up to the big leagues midway through the 2021 season. According to Alex Mayer, the Mariners' stats guru, Raleigh became the second-fastest player in team history to hit the 50-home run mark, taking just 271 games. Alex Rodriguez is the only player ahead of him in the Mariners' history books, as the then-lanky shortstop took 269 games to reach 50 homers. For some context, two baseball legends, Edgar Martinez and Ichiro Suzuki, didn't launch their 50th homers until their 572nd and 760th games.
Raleigh is forging his legacy by showing a penchant for clutch hits, gigantic blasts, and solid defense. He routinely is among the team leaders in Wins Above Replacement at season's end. The 26-year-old catcher entered Wednesday with a 2.8 fWAR, ranking third among catchers.
The most homers by a catcher since 2022 is another statistic that solidifies his standing among the league's backstops.
The former second-round pick is now batting .223 with 21 home runs, 53 RBI, and a .754 OPS, good for 2.8 fWAR, which ranks third among catchers. Sounds like the Mariners have a keeper behind the plate.