Fresh off of a series victory in Kansas City, Mariners' Mega-star Julio Rodriguez is on a blistering pace. But, as most of you know, this was not the case throughout most of 2023. Julio struggled in April, May and June, leaving fans wondering about Julio as a player. Would he achieve stardom? Was he a flash in the pan? Did the Mariners pay him too early? Hindsight is 20/20, but looking back, Julio is answering all of those questions right now.
Julio's stats by month in 2023:
Hits / At-Bats
Extra Base Hits
March / April
27 / 113
28 / 111
22 / 100
31 / 116
26 / 74
Obviously, June was his worst month. The troubling number in June is the lack of extra base hits. Julio hit just 2 doubles and 3 home runs for the entire month. Over his last 31 games, Julio is hitting .321/.381/.941. Sure, 31 games is a small sample size, but those are ELITE numbers over that span. Maybe those numbers are inflated with Julio's last series against the Royals, where he went 12-21 in the 4 game series. But those numbers still count, so they count here too.
What is the Mariners record month-to-month, compared with Julio's stats?
Wins - Losses
March / April
12 - 16
9 - 15
17 - 9
11 - 4
The obvious bad month is June. Is it a coincidence that Julio's worst month is the same as the Mariners worst month? I don't think so. Julio Rodriguez is the Mariners' best player. This team will go as far as Julio can take them. But Is it all on Julio? No. There is plenty of blame to go around as to why the Mariners are having to play catch up in the standings. Ty France double play issues, Teoscar Hernandez and Eugenio Suarez's strikeout problems, And Jarred Kelenic's injury all factor in.
Take the New York Yankees, for example. Aaron Judge got hurt on June 3rd, and missed almost 2 months with a toe injury. The Yankees record without him was 18-23. Now, The Yanks have fallen off even with Judge back in the lineup, so this is not a perfect comparison, but this is just one example of how a star player can carry a team on his back.
As I am writing this, the Mariners are just 0.5 games out of the third Wild Card spot, trailing the Toronto Blue Jays. The Mariners travel to Houston this weekend to take on the Astros. These two will square off just 6 more times this season, with the Mariners winning 5 of 7 so far in the season series. Realistically, the mariners need to win just 2 of the final 6 against the Astros to clinch the tie breaker against them. I cannot wait to see Julio keep the hot streak going, and as always, Go Mariners!