Jarred Kelenic, the highly touted outfielder who was one of the key pieces in the trade that sent Robinson Cano and Edwin Diaz from the Seattle Mariners to the New York Mets in 2018, has been making waves recently in the Major Leagues. After a slow start to his career, Kelenic appears to be hitting his stride and is finally living up to the hype that has surrounded him for several years. Here are three reasons why Kelenic may have finally found his swing after the trade.
1. Improved Plate Discipline:
Kelenic’s plate discipline has shown significant improvement over the past few weeks. In his first 10 games of the 2021 season, he had a strikeout rate of 50%. However, he has reduced his strikeout rate to just 19.6% over his last 14 games. This can be attributed to Kelenic’s increased patience at the plate, as he is working counts deeper and waiting for pitches that are more hittable. As he continues to get more comfortable and confident at the plate, Kelenic’s plate discipline should only continue to improve.
2. Re-gaining Confidence:
Kelenic’s start in the Majors was challenging, to say the least, and he acknowledged that his confidence took a hit. After batting just .115 in his first ten games with the Mariners, Kelenic was demoted to Triple-A Tacoma. However, his stint in the minors seems to have brought about a renewed sense of confidence. In his first few games back with the Mariners, Kelenic has been much more relaxed at the plate and has taken better swings. Even in his early struggles, Kelenic never lost confidence in his abilities, and his recent success will undoubtedly only build his confidence further.
3. Adjusting to the Big Leagues:
Perhaps the biggest challenge for young players making the jump to the Majors is adjusting to the elevated level of play. Kelenic has proven to be a quick study in this regard, as he has already started to make the necessary adjustments to succeed against big-league pitching. One noticeable change has been Kelenic’s improved ability to hit breaking balls, something that he struggled with earlier in the season. As he continues to gain experience, Kelenic should only continue to become more confident in his ability to make these adjustments and build a successful career in the Major Leagues.
In conclusion, Kelenic’s breakout can be attributed to several factors, including his improved plate discipline, regained confidence, and ability to adjust to the big leagues. While it will take time to see if Kelenic can continue to develop into a consistent performer at the Major League level, his early success is a very encouraging sign for the Mariners and their fans. If he can continue to build off his recent success, Kelenic could become a cornerstone of the Mariners’ franchise for years to come.