Seattle Mariners

Breaking down the 2018 Mariners’ roster, lineup, rotation and bullpen

CATCHERS

No.

Name

B-T

Ht.

Wt.

Age

MLB Service

3

Mike Zunino

R-R

6-2

220

27

3 years

10

Mike Marjama

R-R

6-2

205

28

Rookie

The skinny: Mike Zunino is more solidified as the Mariners’ starting catcher than at any point in his young career. His bat has improved from the dismal start he had to 2017. He hit three home runs in one game this spring. When he’s hot, he can pick up homers in bunches. But he hasn’t yet shed his reputation for being strikeout prone. His backup, Mike Marjama, is a former third baseman who didn’t start playing catcher until he became a professional. The Mariners like his bat, but the key for him has been adjusting to pitchers, making sure they don’t have to plug Zunino in during late innings as a defensive replacement.

INFIELDERS

No.

Name

B-T

Ht.

Wt.

Age

MLB Service

27

Ryon Healy

R-R

6-4

232

26

1 year

22

Robinson Cano

L-R

6-0

212

35

12 years

2

Jean Segura

R-R

5-10

205

28

5 years

15

Kyle Seager

L-R

6-0

210

30

6 years

7

Andrew Romine

S-R

6-1

200

32

5 years

20

Daniel Vogelbach

L-R

6-0

250

25

Rookie

The skinny: Kyle Seager didn’t have one of those hot streaks that had sparked him in past seasons, finishing with a .263/.332/.447 slash line with 27 home runs in 2017. Can the 30-year-old take a step forward this year? Ryon Healy will focus solely on playing first base after splitting some time between there and third with the Athletics. He hit .271 in 149 games last year with 25 home runs, though at least some of his early-season playing time will go to Daniel Vogelbach, who raked this spring, hitting .407 with an OPS of 1.455. Both those stats were the best among spring training qualifiers.

OUTFIELDERS

No.

Name

B-T

Ht.

Wt.

Age

MLB Service

9

Dee Gordon

L-R

5-11

170

29

5 years

17

Mitch Haniger

R-R

6-2

215

27

1 year

51

Ichiro Suzuki

L-L

5-11

175

44

17 years

5

Guillermo Heredia

R-L

5-10

180

27

1 year

The skinny: We’ll get our first look at center fielder Dee Gordon, as opposed to Gold Glove second baseman Dee Gordon. He’s never played a major league game in center in his career, but he’s certainly looked the part during his time there this spring. And his speed (60 stolen bases last year) give the Mariners a dynamic asset at the top of the lineup. Ichiro won’t be who the Mariners remember him for, but he has a chance to prove he still has some hits remaining in his bats. But if he doesn’t work out, Ben Gamel (oblique) has been recovering ahead of schedule and Guillermo Heredia is capable of above-average defense at every outfield spot.

DESIGNATED HITTER

No.

Name

B-T

Ht.

Wt.

Age

MLB Service

23

Nelson Cruz

R-R

6-2

230

37

10 years

The skinny: If there’s anyone set to beat Father Time, it might be Cruz, who is renowned around the Mariners organization for his workout regimen and health routines. He didn’t have the 44 home runs he belted in 2016, but he still finished last season with 39 homers, a .288/.375/.549 slash line, a trip to the All-Star game and the Edgar Martinez Outstanding Designated Hitter award in 2017.

STARTING PITCHERS

No.

Name

B-T

Ht.

Wt.

Age

MLB Service

34

Felix Hernandez

R-R

6-3

225

31

12 years

65

James Paxton

L-L

6-4

235

29

3 years

8

Mike Leake

R-R

5-10

170

30

8 years

32

Marco Gonzales

L-L

6-1

195

26

1 year

The skinny: The Mariners say a healthy James Paxton is among the best in the game, among the likes of Chris Sale, Clayton Kershaw and Corey Kluber. His stuff is that good. Minor injuries have held him back. Same for Felix Hernandez the past two seasons. Gonzaga University graduate Marco Gonzales impressed as much as any pitcher the M’s had in the spring. They’ll likely add Ariel Miranda from Triple-A Tacoma as their fifth starter when the need arises. Erasmo Ramirez is a projected starter once he recovers from a lat strain.

RELIEF PITCHERS

No.

Name

B-T

Ht.

Wt.

Age

MLB Service

39

Edwin Diaz

R-R

6-3

165

24

1 year

12

Juan Nicasio

R-R

6-4

252

31

6 years

50

Nick Vincent

R-R

6-0

185

31

4 years

25

Marc Rzepczynski

L-L

6-2

220

32

7 years

53

Dan Altavilla

R-R

5-11

200

25

1 year

47

James Pazos

R-L

6-2

235

26

1 year

61

Casey Lawrence

R-R

6-2

170

30

1 year

49

Wade LeBlanc

L-L

6-3

205

33

4 years

The skinny: There’s no sugar-coating the loss of right-handed set-up man David Phelps for the season with a torn ulnar collateral ligament. But the Mariners bullpen might be the one group that could absorb the loss. It could be one of their deepest, most talented position groups entering the season. They still have offseason pickup Juan Nicasio, a former starter who was tied for the National League lead in appearances a season ago. And they’ve been impressed with hard-throwing Dan Altavilla’s progression.

tcotterill@thenewstribune.com

Twitter: @TJCotterill

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