Has Dominic Canzone earned a spot, even a starting spot, in the Mariners outfield?

When the Mariners acquired Luke Raley and Mitch Haniger, many figured those would be the ones to hold down the corner outfield spots. As we get closer to the end of Spring Training, has Dom Canzone proved he can fulfill this role instead?
Seattle Mariners Photo Day
Seattle Mariners Photo Day / Steph Chambers/GettyImages

Dominic Canzone came over to Seattle at the Trade Deadline last season as part of the deal that sent Paul Sewald to Arizona. He was reportedly a piece of the trade that the Dbacks did not want to let go of in a perfect world. But, you have to give to receive, and the Diamondbacks needed a closer to help solidify their bullpen.

Canzone showed some flashes last season playing sparingly in just 44 games for the M's. His 2023 season may best be remembered by his home run to tie the game in the bottom of the ninth against the Orioles, where he crushed the ball off the glass of the Hit It Here Cafe. Safe to say the guy has some pop in his bat. The biggest question with Canzone is if he can put it all together consistently.

So far in Spring Training, Canzone is tied with Cal and Haniger for the team lead in homers (3), and is batting an even .300 in 30 at-bats (as of Wednesday morning). He has reportedly put on around 15 extra pounds of muscle and seems determined to be an everyday player in this league. We know Haniger has RF locked down, but what about LF? After acquiring Luke Raley, it seemed as though Canzone may be a platoon spot in RF to help with Haniger's injury history. Based on Spring Training, though, has Canzone taken the edge over Raley in LF?

In nearly the same number of at-bats as Canzone, Raley has just 3 hits in his 28 at-bats. Yes this is just Spring Training, and maybe Raley will close out the spring strong, but Canzone is clearly outplaying him at this point. To put it in perspective, Lazaro Montes has the same amount of hits as Raley, even though he only has 7 at-bats. Raley being outperformed by a minor leaguer who spent most of his time in Low-A ball last season is not a good look.

This may seem like a hit piece on Raley, but just know that this is more so to highlight what Dom Canzone has done this Spring. I still think Raley will be a solid contributor to this ball club and should provide good depth at 1B for whenever Ty France needs a day off or is injured. That being said, I feel that they need to give Canzone a chance to show what he can do on a daily basis.

Assuming he can stay healthy, I firmly believe that Canzone could finish the year with around 20-25 HRs. Maybe even slightly more if things really click for him. He could be a real steal from the Sewald trade last year. Having Canzone put up 20-25 HRs with at least a respectable batting average batting toward the bottom of the lineup would be massive for the club. It is a big 'If', but fingers crossed the Italian Stallion is able to put it all together!