Julio Rodríguez slugs 30th career home run, beats Alex Rodriguez, Ken Griffey Jr. to Mariners team record

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Julio Rodríguez, the Seattle Mariners’ 20-year-old outfielder, made history on Wednesday night by hitting his 30th career home run in just 144 minor league games. In doing so, he beat out legendary Mariners players Alex Rodriguez and Ken Griffey Jr. to become the fastest player in franchise history to reach that milestone.

Rodríguez, who is considered one of the top prospects in all of baseball, hit the home run for the Everett AquaSox, the Mariners’ High-A affiliate, in a game against the Hillsboro Hops. The blast was a two-run shot to left field in the bottom of the fifth inning.

The home run was not only significant for Rodríguez’s career but also for the Mariners franchise. Alex Rodriguez, who played for the Mariners from 1994 to 2000, hit his 30th career home run in his 191st game with the team. Ken Griffey Jr., who spent two separate stints with the Mariners from 1989 to 1999 and 2009 to 2010, hit his 30th career home run in his 153rd game with the team.

Rodríguez’s accomplishment is even more impressive when you consider that he is just 20 years old and has played in only 144 minor league games. He made his professional debut in 2019, playing in just 42 games for the Mariners’ rookie-level team that year. He was then promoted to Everett for the 2021 season and has been tearing it up ever since.

In 49 games with Everett this year, Rodríguez has hit .324 with 12 home runs, 50 RBI, and 11 stolen bases. He currently ranks as the No. 3 prospect in all of baseball, according to MLB Pipeline.

Rodríguez’s power at such a young age has drawn comparisons to some of the game’s greatest players. His swing has been likened to Miguel Cabrera’s, and he has been compared to players like Mike Trout and Bryce Harper.

While Rodríguez is still a year or two away from making his major league debut, Mariners fans are already salivating over the prospect of seeing him play alongside young stars like Jarred Kelenic and Logan Gilbert.

For now, Rodríguez will continue to develop in the minor leagues, but it’s clear that he is on a path to stardom. His record-breaking home run on Wednesday night was just the latest achievement in what promises to be a long and impressive career.

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