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Seattle Mariners

Where Mariners stand in latest MLB power rankings

Jorge Polanco of the Seattle Mariners scores off of Luke Raley's single to right during the third inning against the Kansas City Royals at T-Mobile Park on Monday in Seattle.   (Tribune News Service)
The Seattle Times

The Seattle Mariners are in first place with just under three weeks until the calendar flips to June, and yet, they’ve largely underachieved thus far. It’s a combination that could indicate the best is yet to come for the Mariners, but for that to happen, they’ll have to get the bats going.

While Mariners’ starting pitchers have been stellar, the bats have been inconsistent at best. As the weather starts to warm, there are signs the offense is turning a corner. That could start with Julio Rodriguez, who hit his second home run of the season Sunday and has hit six balls in play over the last two games with exit velocities of over 100 mph.

The Mariners have won seven of their last eight series.

Here’s a look at where the Mariners stand in the latest MLB power rankings: No. 12

I know I keep saying this, but now I mean it: Here comes Julio. Julio Rodríguez hit only his second homer — only his second! How is that possible? — on Sunday, a 409-foot blast that was his first extra-base hit in 43 plate appearances. But something is brewing: He hit the ball 100 mph or harder three times on Saturday (all went for outs) and twice again on Sunday. It’s about to click for him, you just watch.

CBS Sports: No. 12

After finishing April with 11 wins in their last 14 games, they started May with six losses in their first 10 games. Same ol’ inconsistent M’s, huh?

Bleacher Report: No. 12

The Mariners vaulted into the top 10 in these rankings with six straight series wins heading into last week, but the offense went silent last week as they scored a combined six runs in their four losses. Julio Rodríguez is still trying to snap out of his early funk, as he is hitting .255/.310/.323 with only two home runs and 50 strikeouts in 174 plate appearances.

Yahoo! Sports: No. 12

When Bryan Woo went down in spring training due to elbow soreness, it was quite the luxury for the Mariners to have a former sixth overall pick in Emerson Hancock ready to slide into the No. 5 spot in the rotation, and he performed admirably in Woo’s absence. He might not have the upside of the other supremely talented right-handers on the Seattle staff, but Hancock is a capable back-end guy, and it wouldn’t be shocking to see him called upon again in the near future.

USA Today: No. 9

Notorious slow starter Julio Rodriguez starting to fully emerge.

The Score: No. 12

The Mariners are atop the AL West by a half-game almost entirely thanks to their brilliant starting pitchers. Despite scoring 17 runs against Oakland over the weekend, their offense continues to sputter, with star Julio Rodríguez (.633 OPS) leading the way in that regard. The Mariners are facing the Royals, Orioles, and Yankees over the next 11 days and need Rodríguez to start hitting if they’re to survive this stretch with that division lead intact.

Talkin’ Baseball podcast: No. 12

Seattle hasn’t hit, but that kind of hasn’t slowed them down, and there’s going to be more hitting. Julio’s going to happen at some point.