Jarred Kelenic, so far, has not lived up to the expectations that many Mariners fans had for him when he was called up near the beginning of the 2021 season. Management, fans, and Kelenic himself seem to be incredibly frustrated with how this year has gone for him. Earlier in the offseason, I wrote about the good with Jarred Kelenic. Now its time to look at the other side.
Kelenic played his first games in the big leagues in May of 2021 and has not been overly impressive. He has 500 MLB at-bats and has only managed to hit over .200 in a single month twice (three times but three games in October of 2021 doesn't really count for me). Those months were September of the 2021 and 2022 seasons.
After September of 2021 and the Mariners elimination from playoff contention in Game 162, Mariners fans were very hopeful of what was going to happen with the former top prospect.
Will he become a superstar and form an incredibly young and talented outfield tandem with AL Rookie of the Year to be Julio Rodriguez?
Will he build off of a steaming hot September and be the catalyst for the Mariners making their first playoff appearance since 2001?
The answer to both so far are astounding no's. Sure he has potential but he has not been consistent at anything but striking out.
In his two seasons in the majors, Kelenic had 28.1% (2021) and 33.7% (2022) strikeout percentage. His 2022 mark would have only been beaten by Joey Gallo and Miguel Sano for the highest in the league if Kelenic had enough at-bats to qualify.
The league is beginning to not care about strikeouts as much, as long as you are producing when it comes to home runs. Eugenio Suarez was 8th in the league in strikeouts last year, but when you can hit for power and a decent average, that's good enough in modern-day baseball.
We will run it back from last year, with Kelenic having a good September, and see if he can build on it this time around.