Mariners Fans can take a big sigh of relief on Teoscar Hernández

Los Angeles Angels v Seattle Mariners
Los Angeles Angels v Seattle Mariners / Steph Chambers/GettyImages

In Tuesday’s game against the Angels, star offseason acquisition Teoscar Hernández finally broke out after a one-for start to the season. Teo hit two monster home runs and had four RBI in the 11-2 win.

With full transparency, his first-inning strikeout made him 1-of-18 on the year with eight punchouts, I was already making this with the title “When can fans justifiably start to worry about Teo.” 

Even in his next at-bat, the first pitch looked like it would still happen, as he looked silly swinging at a slider completely out of the zone that ended even further out the zone than it started. However, the end of the at-bat saw the former Blue Jay hit his first Mariner home run, a blast he followed up with his second later in the game. 

Even after the two big hits, he is just 3-of-21 and has not had the best swings of his career so far in 2023, although he has multiple exit velos of 110+ mph. Despite that, the good news for fans is that it really is such a short sample size. It is also not the first time that he has done this. 

In the past two odd years, in 2019 and 2021, he had very similar struggles in his production early in the year, and yet still finished both seasons as a productive hitter and even an All-Star in 2021. Let’s look at his stats in the first six games of those two years:


















Looking specifically at that 2021 season, he ended as a top-20 MVP candidate with 32 HR and 116 RBI. His 2023 seems to be following a very similar trajectory to that year and fans should wait until at least the end of April before they let any doubt actually set in. It's also worth noting that he didn't see many ABs in the WBC, which could've further contributed to his slow start.

So, just like the San Fransico Giants dynasty in the early 2010s, Teo is on an every-other-year trend that points to positive things for the rest of the season.

At the end of the day, Teo is a big addition to the team and fans ready to see a deep postseason run. It would not surprise me to see the newly formed fan-favorite build off his two-home run performance to turn in an All-Star-level April and May and feel at home in the three-hole of the Mariners lineup.