Franklin Gutierrez, OF
Bats: RightThrows: RightHeight: 6-2Weight: 190Age: 27
2010 salary: $2 million
2010 stats: .245 with 12 home runs, 64 RBI and 25 stolen bases in 28 attempts.
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Gutierrez carried on the tradition of great Mariners center fielders - Ken Griffey Jr. and Mike Cameron - by winning his first Gold Glove, and went them one better. By handling 415 chances without an error, Gutierrez established a major league record: A perfect defensive season. Gutierrez has the speed to outrun fly balls and will challenge any wall. “He takes a lot of stuff away night in and night out,” former manager Daren Brown said. “and he has no fear. When he thinks he has a chance to catch a ball, the warning track doesn’t figure into it.”
Following the best offensive season of his career, Gutierrez struggled at the plate when asked to be a heart-of-the-order force. A stomach ailment cost him games and problems much of the second half, and after batting .326 with 13 RBI in April, hit just .230 the rest of the season.
Summing up Gutierrez's 2010
Even in a down year at the plate, Gutierrez was an impact player with his range in center field. No, he didn’t save Seattle pitchers as many runs as he drove in - it just seemed that way. After hitting 18 home runs in ‘09, Gutierrez tried to hit 25 last season - and hit 12 as he got away from his strengths.
Looking to 2011:
If he’s not asked to be something he’s not, Gutierrez likely will return to being a productive hitter with good-not-great power . “Franklin can spray the ball around the park, hit a few home runs - the 10-15 range most years - and steal some bases for you,” Brown said. “In center field, he’s just a lot of fun to watch.”