The time is finally here. Well, almost. Due to the weather, Opening Day for the Seattle Mariners is now Friday, April 8. However, a day more wait will seem like nothing for fans who have eagerly waited the long offseason for the 2022 Mariners to take the field. It would not be a Mariners 2022 season preview without discussing the most talked-about players from the off-season. Ahead of Opening Day, here is the Seattle Mariners 2022 season preview.
2022 Seattle Mariners Season Preview
Julio Rodriguez Called Up
The number three prospect on MLB Pipeline has got the call. J-Rod is ready. The news came this week and sent a shockwave throughout the organization. The young and tenacious Rodriguez wants to show how great of a ballplayer he is, and he has all the tools to be a terror in this league.
The Mariners got their new ace. There is not much of an introduction for Ray, the reigning AL Cy Young Award winner in 2021 with the Toronto Blue Jays. It’s an amazing set-up for the Mariners pitching, which was already among the best in 2021.
2022 Projected Starting Lineup
Luis Torrens, Cal Raleigh, Tom Murphy
This position is a tricky one to predict. Mariners manager Scott Servais has said the club is considering having 3 catchers again. Cal Raleigh had some struggles starting in the big leagues. He may be the odd-man-out who could be a bench player to at least begin the season. Torrens bat is highly valued in the lineup. The Mariners are yet to commit to a full-time catcher, but it seems as though Torrens will get the majority of the playing time to start 2022.
Who else but utility man TY France. He proved himself last season with an excellent defensive year. The second half saw France be a .321 hitter. Consistency both at the plate and at first was why the Mariners contended last season.
Adam Frazier is a new and exciting acquisition for Seattle. Frazier was an All-Star last year. Plus, he’s an unbelievable production player. The Mariners got their guy in Frazier, who they had on their radar for some time before making the move. Fans expect a lot from Frazier, and hopefully, he delivers.
Eugenio Suárez arguably had the toughest job of anyone. He has to be the replacement for the beloved Kyle Seager. His .198 batting average last season could cause some concerns. He is a player, however, who has tons of power. Suárez has the opportunity to become a productive third baseman if he can find his way at the plate.
The agile and precise Crawford gives the Mariners an excellent defensive shortstop. Crawford’s highlight is the glove, but his bat had slowly caught up. If Crawford can build off of 2021, he could be a force to be reckoned with all season.
Mitch Haniger, Jarred Kelenic, Julio Rodriguez, Jesse Winker
Seattle is rolling with four outfielders with only three positions up for grabs. Haniger is guaranteed in the right field while the other three bring interesting stories. Kelenic will realistically continue his young growth in left-field. The up-and-coming Julio Rodriguez could accompany him. The organization will watch Rodriguez’s first season carefully as he is so valued. It could mean potential days off to accommodate becoming a full-time major league player.
Jesse Winker was another new acquisition. As of right now, he may lose his spot to a veteran and some youngsters. However, the outfield will most likely combine all four players. This Marinerslook different from previous years, but Winker is someone fans should be excited to watch.
Up for Grabs
The 2022 season will probably see the DH up for grabs by anyone. Be it bench players or the extra catcher and outfielder. Most likely whoever is hitting the best at that particular time will get the spot.
Abraham Toro, Dylan Moore
Moore is a player who flourishes in the surprise. He was a dynamic player off the bench last year, and he will continue to serve that role.
Abraham Toro has had a great camp. He is a player who had a high OBP of .315 last year. Toro is the type of player the lineup needs because the Mariners struggled to get runs last year. The Mariners have many players who can be slotted into various spots. Depending on any injuries, days off, and performance, any combination of bench players could make an appearance. The Mariners look to thrive with various players that can be called upon to do the job.
Robbie Ray, Logan Gilbert, Marco Gonzales, Chris Flexen, and Matt Brash
No surprise that Robbie Ray is the Opening Day starter for the Mariners. The 2022 preview of the Mariners has surrounded a lot of him. The reigning Cy Young will be sure to do big things.
The most surprising out of all is Matt Brash. He had a superb Spring Training where he shocked the Mariners staff. It was not expected for him to make the Opening Day roster, but he is deserving of the position. He will be surrounded by veteran pitchers that will be of guidance.
Paul Sewald, Drew Steckenrider, Diego Castillo, Sergio Romo, Yohan Ramirez, Erik Swanson, Andrés Muñoz, Justus Sheffield, Anthony Misiewicz, Matthew Festa
The bullpen may have the most pressure on any portion of the team. The bullpen was a highlight for the Mariners last season, keeping them in tight ballgames day in and day out. The expectation will be the same. The Mariners haven’t committed to a closer, but Sewald seems like the most obvious option. Sheffield has practiced in camp to come in long relief. Castillo is a player who will want to prove himself after his great few seasons for the Tampa Bay Rays not long ago. He could be the closer, too, along with Drew Steckenrider. The rest will battle for middle relief to start the season.
Although many of the season previews surrounding the Mariners discuss the play on the field, there will be a difference off the field. The glaring hole left in the Mariners clubhouse is the retirement of Kyle Seager. A staple in the clubhouse for 10 seasons, his leadership role needs to be fulfilled. The Mariners thankfully have many veterans who could take on the role. Notably, Mitch Haniger is a player in the lineup who has talent and a ‘do it for the team’ mentality. As well, J.P. Crawford is a man of heart. Of course, leadership roles mold themselves throughout the season. A season preview should include these important pieces of the puzzle that make for a successful season.
2022 Needs to A Build-Off Of 2021
AL West Foes
The Mariners 2022 season preview shows the potential this team has. On paper, they are a great team. As any person in sports knows, though, a great team on paper does not always translate into a great play. The Mariners were the fairytale last season. The Oakland Athletics have seemingly sold off the roster. The Texas Rangers are getting close to contention but may not be there yet. The Los Angeles Angels are always predicted to be great. And the Houston Astros are once again expected to be at the top of the standings. The Mariners have competition, but none they can’t handle.
The experience of the immediate success of last season will accompany this roster. If anything should drive this Mariners team, it should be hunger. Being so close last year to that coveted playoff hurdle will surely be at the forefront of everyone’s minds. Fixing what was lacking last season will be a must. Most notably, the -51 run differential will need to be better. The Mariners 2022 season preview: keeping it going. The organization is in a place of positivity. The new offseason acquisitions combined with the taste of being a competitive ballclub last season is a recipe for greatness. The 2022 Mariners now need to play ball.
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Julio Rodriguez, Robbie Ray, Luis Torrens, Cal Raleigh, Tom Murphy, Ty France, Adam, J.P. Crawford, Mitch Haniger, Jarred Kelenic, Jesse Winker, Abraham Toro, Dylan Moore, Logan Gilbert, Marco Gonzales, Chris Flexen, Matt Brash, Paul Sewald, Drew Steckenrider, Diego Castillo, Sergio Romo, Yohan Ramirez, Erik Swanson, Justus Sheffield, Anthony Misiewicz, Matthew Festa