Now a winning season would be a fantasy
With the start of each new professional sports season comes the all important fantasy draft. The MLB season is about to begin and the Seattle Mariners are poised to improve on their dreadful recent past. By picking up multiple players via trade or free agency, the Mariners are trying to right the ship.
This is good news for Mariners fans who also participate in fantasy baseball. With a new lineup and new rotation, this could be the year that you can draft more than 1 Mariner and feel confident about it. And we all know who I’m talking about…
With all that being said, let’s take a look at the Mariners who might actually help your fantasy team this season!
The Dead Lock
For those who have lived under a rock, Felix Hernandez has been the Seattle Mariners cornerstone and the only real fantasy baseball contributor worth counting on for YEARS. This year is no different…with King Felix at least.
Felix will make your fantasy rotation an instant winner. Even when the Mariners aren’t winning, Felix finds a way to get his in fantasy.
I really don’t need to post stats, but I predict Felix to pitch 200+ innings with 200+ strikeouts and an ERA between 2.50 and 3.00.
The Safe Bets
The re-acquaintance of Michael Morse and the fans in Seattle is already going over smoothly. Probably the biggest offseason piece added to the club, Morse will add some much needed power this team has been lacking since Adrian Beltre was on his way out the door and to Texas.
Morse is guaranteed to be an immediate contributor and is a safe bet to draft in fantasy. Last year’s stats were stunted by some injury issues, but this season he is poised to make a big splash.
Morse is projected to hit between 20-30 home runs, 95+ RBI and close to a .300 batting average. Those are the power numbers we’ve been looking for in Seattle.
Jesus Montero is going to shock some people this season. Quote me on that. After he put up some pretty decent numbers as a true rookie last season, Montero is going to benefit from a stronger lineup and a year of experience under his belt.
While he won’t be the next Mike Piazza or anything, his projected numbers will contribute in a big way. Montero is projected for 20+ home runs, 70+ RBI and a batting average hovering right around .270.
Like I said, not the greatest, but most catchers aren’t top tier hitters anymore.
For now, Tom Wilhelmsen is the Mariners closer. Ride the wave while you can with him, because there could very well be a changing of the guard at some point this season.
Wilhelmsen will benefit greatly from the added power and most likely start a pace to earn quite a few more saves than last year’s 29.
There are a couple youngsters waiting in the wings for the closer role and the Mariners have a history of shipping out successful closers. If he does get dealt, though, he will almost certainly be the new team’s closer given all the injury issues that closers have had the last couple seasons.
The other added power bat to the lineup, Kendrys Morales is also looking to make a comeback. Previously with the Angels, Morales was a surging power hitter until he tragically suffered a serious leg injury. This is his shot at redemption and a payday, because he is only signed for this season…so far.
Morales is projected to hit 25+ homeruns, 75+ RBI and an average hovering right around .270. I think it will be better than that.
The Watch List
I honestly believe Mike Zunino will be the first prospect call up of the year. With Kelly Shoppach taking the place of a productive John Jaso, don’t be surprised if the Mariners usher Zunino in quickly.
If they do, it would work much like last year with Jesus Montero platooning and catcher and DH. First base could be an option this season, too.
Keep an eye out for Zunino, though, as he has been lighting up scoreboards all through the minors and this spring.
Carter Capps & Stephen Pryor
I put these two together because they are both essentially touted as being and are going to be fighting for the closer role. Both Carter Capps and Stephen Pryor have tremendous upside. There can only be one Mariners closer. Keep your eye on both and snag the one that ultimately gets the job.
The rest of the starting rotation
If the Mariners offense comes alive like it’s expected to, everyone will benefit. The most likely beneficiary is the starting rotation who consistently allowed 1 or 2 runs in games last year and still got the loss.
With added power comes more runs and with more runs comes wins.
See how that works?
They may very well be worth a spot on your fantasy team.