SEATTLE MARINERS

A surprising Mariners player gets spotlight for eye-opening stats

May 20, 2024, 12:07 PM | Updated: 1:27 pm

The American League West-leading Seattle Mariners (25-22) are in New York this week for a marquee four-game series against another division leader, the Yankees (33-15).

Mariners Breakdown: What stands out in middle of seven-game gauntlet

Trips to the Big Apple for teams during the baseball tend to include visits to the MLB Network studios, and that was the case Monday for one member of the Mariners. The choice – Dylan Moore – was perhaps a surprising one, but not when you see the numbers the MLB Central crew pulled up to highlight him.

The 31-year-old Moore has been slugging better than ever early on this season, with his .450 slugging percentage higher than anybody on the team who has played at least 20 games except Cal Raleigh, and his .788 OPS better than every M’s player other than Josh Rojas.

Moore has four home runs, eight doubles and a pair of triples in 37 games this season (his sixth both in MLB and with the M’s), and he’s been swinging especially well since taking over at shortstop when J.P. Crawford hit the injured list with an oblique injury in late April. In 23 games since Crawford first left the lineup, Moore is slashing .257/.338/.514 for an .852 OPS with three homers, seven doubles, a triple, 11 runs, 12 RBIs and three stolen bases on as many attempts.

Moore is coming off a big weekend in Baltimore, too. Over the three-game series against one of the brightest teams in the AL, he went 4 for 12 with three doubles, a homer, four runs, two RBIs, two walks, a hit by pitch, and just one strikeout.

On the MLB Network set, former major leaguers and current analysts Mark DeRosa (who is set to be on Seattle Sports’ Wyman and Bob at 2:30 p.m. Monday) and Billy Ripken broke down some highlights from the Orioles series with Moore, including a very impressive homer off Baltimore left-hander John Means in which Moore took a fastball on the outer edge and the plate and deposited it over the big wall in deep left-center at Camden Yards.

The MLB Network team also pulled out some eye-opening stats that show just how well Moore is swinging the bat right now, as they all place his name among some of the very best in the game.

• Moore is tied for the third-highest launch angle (minimum 50 batted balls) at 25.9°, behind only Toronto’s Daulton Varsho and the Dodgers’ Max Muncy (and ahead of Angels superstar Mike Trout).

• Moore ranks fifth in highest pull rate (minimum 100 plate appearances) at 53.8%, a metric that is currently led by perennial Astros All-Star José Altuve.

• And finally the biggest one – Moore is tied for eighth in slugging on fastballs (minimum 160 plate appearances ending on fastballs) at .600. In this stat, he ranks behind only Shohei Ohtani, Aaron Judge, Marcell Ozuna, Altuve, Juan Soto, Brent Rooker and Kerry Carpenter, and he’s even ahead of Mookie Betts, who has the highest offensive fWAR this season. It’s worth noting that the player Moore is tied with at .600 is his teammate, Mariners designated hitter Mitch Garver.

The recent play of Moore stands out to his manager, as you might expect – and it’s not just the bat that is deserving of praise.

“This is the best version of Dylan Moore that we’ve ever seen here,” Mariners skipper Scott Servais said Saturday after Moore hit a pair of doubles in a 4-3 win over the Orioles. “He’s been here a little while, but he’s focused on getting better. I think he’s found a routine and he’s getting regular playing time right now, so his timing is consistent. It’s been a heck of a job defensively – he’s not a shortstop by nature, more a second base/utility type. But the quality of the at-bat has just been awesome to see. Doesn’t matter if it’s a lefty out there – he’s certainly very comfortable against the lefties, but even if the righties are out there, he hangs in there and gives himself a chance.”

Watch the full MLB Network segment with Mariners utilty player Dylan Moore in the video embedded near the top of this post or at this link.

The M’s continue their 10-game road trip on Monday with a 4:05 p.m. series opener at Yankee Stadium, with Mariners Radio Network coverage starting at 3 p.m. with the pregame show on Seattle Sports 710 AM, the Seattle Sports app and SeattleSports.com. For details on how to stream Mariners radio broadcasts from Seattle Sports, click here.

More on the Seattle Mariners

Mariners make noise in latest prospect rankings update
• Injury Updates: The latest on Jorge Polanco and J.P. Crawford
Is Mariners’ Scott Servais a good manager? Why ESPN’s Kurkjian says yes
Watch: Julio Rodríguez gets revenge with home run robbery in Baltimore
Rost on Seattle Mariners: What we’ve learned a quarter through season

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