After 45 years in Major League Baseball, it is worth taking a trip down memory lane and seeing who deserves to be on the Seattle Mariner’s all-time team. Joining the MLB through expansion in 1977, the Mariners have not yet found the ultimate success of winning a World Series. However, many notable names have worn the uniform, including numerous Hall of Fame inductees and players considered the best. From past until present, here is the Mariner’s all-time team.
Mariners All-Time Team
Catcher: Dan Wilson
Dan Wilson was the constant man behind the plate for 12 years. Wilson’s long tenure of 1,251 games is the longest for a catcher in Mariners history. Wilson is known for being one of the best defensive catchers ever played. In 1997 he set a record with 1,051 putouts, the most for any American League catcher. He put up those numbers the rest of his career, with a very high fielding percentage and minimal errors.
He was a reliability to not only by other players on the field but also by the many pitchers he caught. Wilson saw four playoff appearances and some of the best Mariner’s teams in franchise history. It would allow Wilson to acquire some phenomenal pitching. Most notably, the pitcher-catcher relationship with Randy Johnson is well regarded. Wilson is the only catcher that is a member of the Mariners Hall of Fame, showing that no one was as influential behind the plate as him.
First Baseman: Alvin Davis
How could it be a Mariners all-time list and not include “Mr.Mariner.” Alvin Davis was arguably one of the best Mariner’s players before the success of the 1990s. In 1984 he was the first Mariner’s player to win Rookie of the Year. He was an All-Star that year, too. The 1984 and 1989 seasons saw Davis in the top 1o of many offensive categories, including doubles and RBI’s. He was very well-liked by Mariner’s fans, and his constant presence on the field made him a Mariner’s staple.
After leaving the Mariners, he only played 40 games with the California Angels before leaving the MLB. His .280 career batting percentage reflects his constant production while with the Mariners. Davis is another member of the Mariner’s Hall of Fame. From being one of the first Mariner’s draft picks to have a significant impact on the organization, his legacy at first base and the plate remains.
Second Baseman: Bret Boone
Bret Boone had two stints with the Mariners, from 1992-1993 and 2001-2005. The first stint was not very memorable, other than the trade involving Boone brought in Dan Wilson, who also made this all-time list. By the time Boone returned, he had established himself as an all-star player. He was an excellent extra-base hitter.
In 2001 he broke the Mariners record for home runs by a second baseman with 37. He consistently hit doubles and was a massive part of the Mariners’ success in 2001. In Seattle, he was a 2x All-Star, 3x Gold Glove winner, 2x Silver Slugger winner, and the AL RBI leader in 2001. He may not have spent the most time in Seattle as some of the other players on this list, but his long list of awards demonstrates how valuable he was to Seattle.
Third Baseman: Kyle Seager
Seager may have just retired, but there is no doubt he is among the Mariner’s best. He spent his entire career in Seattle, and there is little doubt there is a spot for him on the Mariners Hall of Fame one day. He was a player who made things happen for the Mariners. Seager consistently was among the leaders in RBI’s on the team. He also had over a .300 OBP in 9 out of 11 seasons. Defensively, Seager won a Gold Glove in 2014. He was also an All-Star that year.
For three years, he was also at the top of the league for WAR. Seager may not have been the flashiest player, but he went about his job quietly and did it well. More than anything, Kyle Seager was a positive influence in the clubhouse. He played the game the right way. A player rarely plays their whole career in one city. 11 seasons in a Mariners uniform was not long enough for the man in the hot corner.
Shortstop: Álex Rodríguez
Álex Rodríguez, better known as “A-Rod,” is controversial to put on any list. However, he did not test positive for PEDS use with his time spent in Seattle in his rookie seasons. Overall, depending on opinion, he is considered one of the best players in baseball history, so of course, he will be on the Mariner’s all-time list. From the time Rodriquez was drafted by the Mariners until 2000, when he signed with the Texas Rangers, he was a star. In his 20-year-old season in 1996, he had an incredible batting average of .358.
Rodriquez became the player to watch in the league while in Seattle. His ability to do everything in the game well led him to break Mariners records in average, runs, hits, doubles, and total bases in 1996. He was electric at the plate and dynamic in the field. He had the young pop and confidence that the Mariners needed at the time. Alex Rodriquez is largely forgotten about as a Mariner. His unbelievable rookie seasons still land him on the Mariner’s all-time team.
Left Field: Jay Buhner
Jay Buhner is a Mariner’s fan favorite. The famous “buzz cut” nights at the park for fans became a great source of fun. Although his jersey is not retired, it has never been given out officially after his retirement. It shows just how much he meant to the team. Buhner was not a player to hit for average. He also holds the Mariners record for strikeouts. However, he made up for it with the power and RBIs that came with it. He had a rocket for an arm, consistently putting him in the tops for putouts and assists by an outfielder.
Buhner was an All-Star and Gold Glove winner. He became a member of the Mariners’ Hall of Fame in 2004. Buhner was content to play in Seattle as he did so for 14 seasons. He may not have been the best player in Mariners history, but his popularity combined with his power and fielding deserves a spot on the all-time list.
Center Field: Ken Griffey Jr.
What would a Mariners all-time team list be without Ken Griffey Junior. He is the ‘best of the best.’ It isn’t easy to think of what Ken Griffey Jr could not do as a ballplayer because he was just that spectacular. His highlights are never-ending, but some of them include ten straight seasons of representing Seattle as an All-Star, 10x Gold Glove winner, 7x Silver Slugger, 1997 AL MVP and RBI leader, and 4x AL Home Run leader. His 630 career home runs, many of them in a Mariners uniform, make him one of the best home run hitters in baseball history. He was dynamic in the outfield, often robbing hitters with miraculous catches.
Ken Griffey Junior was indeed an exceptional athlete by all standards. Not only was he impressive on the field, but he was an advocate off the field. During his time with the Mariners, he started to wear the number 42 to celebrate Jackie Robinson. Now, the entire league has continued what Griffey Junior created. A member of the Mariners’ Hall of Fame and Baseball Hall of Fame, Ken Griffey Junior will forever be a Mariners and baseball elite.
Right Field: Ichiro Suzuki
You can’t think of Seattle and not think of Ichiro. His classic slap hits over a second base were his signature, but he did so much in his 14 seasons as a Mariner. In his first season in 2001, he was automatically a star. He arguably had the best rookie season for a Mariner, earning the MVP award, Rookie of the Year, All-Star, Stolen Base Leader, Gold Glove, Silver Slugger, and batting champion.
Most notably, Ichiro still holds the MLB record for hits in a single season with 262. His calm presence at the plate showcased his many years of professional experience in Japan. In addition, Ichiro’s awkward stance with his knees pressed together worked quite well for him. Ichiro played professional baseball from 1992 to 2019. His image will always be associated with the Seattle Mariners.
Designated Hitter: Edgar Martinez
There is a reason the road outside the stadium is named “Edgar Martinez Way.” Martinez had confidence at the plate and a feel for the strike zone like no other. WAR as a position player was constantly in the top 10 in the league. With him in the lineup, his value was unmatched. He also reached the elusive .300 batting average club with an overall batting average of .312.
Martinez is considered one of the best DHs of all time. A 7x All-Star, 5x Silver Slugger, 2x AL Batting Champion, Roberto Clemente Award winner, and the AL RBI leader in 2000. Of course, his number 11 is retired by the Mariners, and he is a member of the Baseball Hall of Fame. Edgar is a player that most Mariners fans could talk about forever. He is the essence of the Mariners’ all-time team. He is deservingly on the all-time list and most likely will be on it for the rest of the organization’s history.
Starters & Relievers
Félix Hernández, Randy Johnson, and Jamie Moyer
It isn’t easy to pick just two all-time starters because the Mariners have had so many. Hernández, Johnson, and Moyer emerge as the best. The wave of yellow towels in “King’s Court” was a regular occurrence from 2005 to 2019. Félix Hernández was as demanding on the mound as he was effective. He was the ace of the Mariners rotation for years. If Hernández was not already a beloved Mariner, his perfect game on August 15th, 2012, will be engrained in the minds of fans forever. Hernández is the Mariners’ all-time strikeout leader for pitchers, surpassing the next all-time pitcher on the list, Randy Johnson.
Randy Johnson is another great Mariner on this extensive list who played a vital role in the success of the 1990s. His Cy Young award and league lead in strikeouts in 1995, 4x strikeout leader, and 5x All-Star as a Mariner, to name a few. The “Big Unit” was prominent in physical stature but also talent. He managed to fool batters every time he was on the mound with a four-seam fastball, sinker, and slider as his main pitches. He gave the Mariners a chance to win.
Later in his career, the Mariners acquired Jamie Moyer, but he impacted the organization significantly. He was a pitcher who walked few and had many complete games to his name. Moyer’s career was up and down with the Mariners, but he was the highlight of the rotation on a good start or in a good season. He also won numerous community awards while in Seattle. In 2003 he won the prestigious Roberto Clemente Award, Lou Gehrig Memorial Award, Hutch Award, and Branch Rickey Award. Moyer is an example of a Mariners all-time player who is all-time both on the field and off of it. Moyer is also a member of the Mariners Hall of Fame.
Relief Pitcher: J.J. Putz
If there is one area the Mariners have lacked throughout their history, it is in the bullpen. JJ Putz was a rare long-lasting dominant closer for the Mariners. He became the closer for the Mariners and even won the Rolaids Relief Man of the Year award. He was a reliable closer when the organization was on a downfall post the 2001 playoffs. In his most recognizable season in 2007, he converted 40 saves in 42 chances, breaking the Mariners record for consecutive saves. He may not be the best Mariner to make this list, but his six years in the bullpen in successful form reckons the spot as the best all-time reliever.
Honorable Mentions: John Olerud, Harold Reynolds, Phil Bradley
John Olerud is better known as a Toronto Blue Jay, but he had very successful seasons as a Mariner from 2000 to 2004. His high on-base percentage and amount of walks immensely helped the Mariners in 2001 and the year following. He was a man who got on base for the team and set up the more powerful hitters. He was an All-Star and a 3x Gold Glove winner as a Mariner. A short but sweet time spent in Seattle.
Harold Reynolds was the base stealer of the 1980s for the Mariners. His speed and ability to play the field attracted success. He played the majority of his career in Seattle. He was the AL Stolen Base leader in 1987, 2x All-Star, 3x Gold Glove, and won the Roberto Clemente Award all in Seattle.
Phil Bradley was a player of constant production. His batting average never dipped below .297 in the four years as a Mariner. Along with Reynolds, Bradley was also a primary base stealer on the team. Bradley was also a representative at the 1985 All-Star Game for the Mariners.
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Dan Wilson, Alvin Davis, Bret Boone, Kyle Seager, Álex Rodríguez, Jay Buhner, Ken Griffey Jr., Ichiro Suzuki, Edgar Martinez, Félix Hernández, Randy Johnson, Jamie Moyer, J.J. Putz, John Olerud, Harold Reynolds, Phil Bradley