What to expect from the new-look Franklin Gutierrez

Feb 22, 2012, 4:34 PM | Updated: 5:00 pm

By Brady Henderson

You can always count on spring training to provide more than one story about a player claiming to be in the best shape of his life.

Such is the case this year with Franklin Gutierrez. By all accounts, the Mariners center fielder has the bulging muscles to prove it.

Guti-statsGutierrez arrived at spring training noticeably bigger, reportedly having added 10-15 pounds of muscle over the offseason. With his improved strength and the stomach issues that have slowed him for parts of the last two seasons apparently under control, Mariners manager Eric Wedge thinks Gutierrez is in line for a bounce-back season.

“It’s really evident at home plate. It’s obviously evident in his stature and the way he’s carrying himself,” Wedge said of Gutierrez, who hit .224 in 92 games last season. “You see that confidence in his eyes. You see that strength in his persona — all those things that really will play into him getting back on track. I’ve said it before, I really feel like he’s going to have a heck of a year for us.”

Bob and Groz offer their expectations for Gutierrez in the video below.

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What to expect from the new-look Franklin Gutierrez