mariners

Has Edgar Martinez Made A Difference For the Mariners?

Is The Edgar Effect Real?

The Seattle Mariners hired by baseball hero, Edgar Martinez, back on June 20th to be their new hitting coach.  Everyone knows that Edgar was one of the best right handed hitters the game ever saw but his ability to coach others on a craft that he perfected still remains a question mark.

Could it be that the M’s brass just wanted to sell a few more tickets in a doomed season by putting one of their most popular players ever back in the dugout?  Sure, I think that’s possible.  But the question still remains–

Have the M’s improved offensively under Edgar’s tutelage?

Fans loved Edgar for his consistently great hitting.  Are we already seeing that he can teach that skill to others?

Fans loved Edgar for his consistently great hitting. Are we already seeing that he can teach that skill to others?

It’s a hard question to answer when he’s only been on the job for 23 days but it’s the All-Star break now so let’s compare the M’s numbers before and after the return of Edgar Martinez.

The Numbers

As a team the M’s were hitting .233 the day Edgar was hired.  In the 23 days that have followed the Mariners have hit .244 (171 for 701).  That’s an 11 point improvement.  It was enough to raise the team’s season batting average two points to .235.

Now that may not seem like much at first but we are just getting started here.  Individual performances show some far more drastic changes.   Let’s take a look at everyone’s favorite M’s offensive punching bag, Dustin Ackley.

Ackley was hitting .184 on the season when Edgar’s deal was announced.   In the 23 days that followed, Ackley has hit .400 (12 for 30).  Ackley has raised his .184 average on 6/19 to .222 on the season.  That’s a huge improvement for Ackley.  In fact Ackley’s numbers show he has improved more than any other Mariner under the coaching greatness of Martinez.

Want more?  Perhaps the most visible guy struggling at the plate this year has been the $240 million man himself, Robinson Cano.  As of 6/19 Cano was batting .245.  Post Edgar, Cano has hit .294 and he’s hit four of his six homers on the season during that stretch as well.  10 of his 30 RBIs have come with Edgar too.

In the case of Cano, we aren’t just talking about a guy getting more hits.  His production has improved in all of the key areas we measure baseball offense.  It’s certainly been nice to see Cano get out of this extended 2+ month funk he had been in too.

It would appear even Cano has learned something from Edgar.

It would appear even Cano has learned something from Edgar.

I know what you are probably saying to yourself right about now–  23 games is just too small of a sample size to really see if there is in fact marked improvement by these guys now that they are coached by Edgar.

To stifle that argument I present to you, Mark Trumbo.  Trumbo came over the M’s on June 3rd.  That means he played in just 13 games with the Mariners that were pre-Edgar games.  In those 13 games Trumbo batted a whopping .187.

After Edgar arrived we see a distinct change in Trumbo’s numbers.  In his 23 post-Edgar games he’s hit .263.  Just like Cano, we also see production changes with Trumbo too.  He had no homers and just three RBIs before Edgar and has had two homers and eight RBIs since.

Let me throw one more at you–  Brad Miller.  On 6/19 Miller was hitting just .230 on the season.  Enter Edgar Martinez and Miller has hit .274 in those 23 games with Gar.  10 of his 27 RBIs have come with Edgar as well.

I’ll be honest.  I can’t list every single M’s lineup regular as an instant turn around success courtesy of Martinez’s great coaching ability.  Mike Zunino‘s numbers are virtually the same both before and after Edgar, Logan Morrison has dropped about 40 points since Edgar came on board and Kyle Seager has dropped about 30 points too.

Let’s go beyond raw stats and look at the ABs and what we actually are seeing when we watch these games.  The Mariners are seeing more pitches under Edgar.  They appear to be hitting the ball the other way far more often than before Edgar.  The team is scoring more runs with Edgar in the dugout too and these are things we saw Edgar do consistently and well for so long in Seattle.

Can you attribute every bit of the offensive jump to Edgar?  Probably not. 

I am convinced about one thing though.  Those that can do, can apparently teach, at least in Edgar’s case and Gar will become part of the solution in Seattle, not part of the problem.

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About Brian Scott

Husband, Philosopher, Animal Rights Advocate, and Author Brian is a Spokane native and Gonzaga University grad. Seahawks, Mariners, GU Hoops and Cougar football are the teams that drive his passion for sports. You can catch him on twitter too! Connect with Brian today!
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