Mariners’ Julio Rodríguez star of Topps cards boxes, commercial
Going into his second big league season, Mariners center fielder Julio Rodríguez can already call himself an All-Star, a Home Run Derby participant, a member of the 25/25 club, and American League Rookie of the Year.
Drayer on Mariners spring training: What we’ll be watching
On Wednesday, he officially adds another honor to the list, as he’s the featured player on both boxes and pack wrappers for Series 1 of the 2023 edition of Topps baseball trading cards.
Not only that, but the 22-year-old phenom shows off his acting skills – and cooking chops, sort of – in a commercial shared on Topps social media channels Wednesday morning.
BATTER UP! Welcome to The J-Rod Show, where Chef Julio Rodríguez whips up a fresh batch of #ToppsSeriesOne 🥣⏲
Available now at hobby shops, retailers and https://t.co/7qPUMLZw5B. pic.twitter.com/nLoX0MevVA
— Topps (@Topps) February 15, 2023
Rodríguez joins Mariners legends like Ken Griffey Jr., Ichiro Suzuki and Alex Rodriguez as a featured player for a box of baseball trading cards.
Julio Rodríguez has been the main focus of a frenzy in the baseball card hobby in recent months as his rookie cards in various 2022 sets began to hit the shelves. While there was a host of sought-after rookies from 2022, including Kansas City’s Bobby Witt Jr., Detroit’s Spencer Torkelson and Houston’s Jeremy Peña, Rodríguez has generally been considered the top of the class.
While 2023 Topps Series 1 doesn’t include any Julio rookies, he’s still heavily featured in the checklist.
View this post on Instagram
Rodríguez burst on the scene with Seattle last season, posting a slash line of .284/.345/.509 for an .853 OPS with 28 home runs, 75 RBIs, 84 runs scored and 25 stolen bases. He became the fastest player in MLB history to join the 25/25 club (home runs and stolen bases), doing so in just 125 career games, three games faster than Angels superstar Mike Trout. He is also just the fourth rookie ever aged 21 or younger to post a WAR of at least 6 in MLB history.
Rodríguez’s Mariners have started spring training in earnest this week, with pitchers and catchers officially reporting Wednesday. Position players are due to be at the team’s complex in Peoria, Ariz., on Monday, though Rodríguez will spend much of his time over the next month preparing and playing with the Dominican Republic team for the World Baseball Classic.
Mariners coverage from Seattle Sports
• Fann: Mariners’ top spring training competition resides in bullpen
• Mariners’ Matt Brash’s slider may be ‘best pitch’ in MLB history
• Mariners Notebook: M’s on WBC rosters, Leonys Martín back on MILB deal
• Morosi: Why Wong and Julio should be ‘connected’ in Mariners’ lineup
• 2023 Mariners spring training radio schedule on Seattle Sports