SHANNON DRAYER

Orioles’ Mark Trumbo credits time with Mariners for recent success

May 18, 2016, 12:25 PM | Updated: 12:53 pm

Mariners pitchers Wade Miley and Steve Johnson were able to do something Tuesday that not many pitchers have been able to this season so far: Shut down Mark Trumbo.

For just the third time this year, Trumbo failed to reach base in a game. While he has cooled off a bit after a blistering start to the season, Trumbo is still hitting .299/.353/.576, a considerable jump from his career line of .253/.304/.465. He gives a lot of credit for the recent success to work he was able to get in during his time as a Mariner last season.

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“I think it is really just an extension of some of the adjustments I saw with Edgar last year,” he told Dave Sims on the Mariners radio pregame show. “I think I kind of saw a noticeable difference the way I was attacking some of the pitches and making more solid contact than I had in the past. I just kind of tried to do the same principles that he showed me, wrote some stuff down. Obviously there’s new influences here, but I’d say overall it’s the same stuff I was doing later last year.”

After a slow start to his short Mariners career, going 11 for 79 for a .139 average and .361 OPS in his first 82 plate appearances, Trumbo settled in and hit .302/.358/.490 the rest of the season. Rather than take him to third-year arbitration where he was projected to earn near $10 million, Seattle traded him to the Orioles for Steve Clevenger, C.J. Riefenhauser and ultimately salary relief – dollars they could put elsewhere. The move in the end could prove to be a huge benefit for Trumbo, who will be a free agent following the 2016 season. Hitter-friendly Camden Yards is a great place to put up numbers in your walk year.

Turns out another Mariner helped him prepare for that, too.

“I tried to take a lot of mental notes watching Nellie hit,” Trumbo said of Nelson Cruz, who came to Seattle after a stellar year with the Orioles. “He obviously did really well here and he’s done really well in Seattle. I understand this park can play favorably to hitters and it’s kind of exactly the type of place you would want to be at this point of my career.”

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