Leonys Martin could ‘make a difference’ for Mariners, according to Mike Blowers

Feb 4, 2016, 2:35 PM | Updated: 2:39 pm

Leonys Martin was acquired by the Mariners to be a strong defensive presence in center field. (AP)...

Leonys Martin was acquired by the Mariners to be a strong defensive presence in center field. (AP)



All of the new faces with the Mariners will keep ROOT Sports analyst Mike Blowers busy when spring training begins in Peoria, Ariz., later this month. The good news for Blowers is he at least knows which player he’s most interested to see up close.

“I think the guy that is intriguing to me that I think can have a real impact is probably (Leonys) Martin,” Blowers told 710 ESPN Seattle’s “Brock and Salk” on Thursday.

Related: Mariners sign Korean slugger Dae-ho Lee to minor-league deal

Blowers is already familiar with Martin the player, as the Cuban-born outfielder has played against Seattle numerous times after spending five seasons as a member of the division-rival Texas Rangers. It’s the knowledge of Martin’s potential and the fact that he’s coming off a down year that makes him the most compelling player on Seattle’s roster to Blowers.

“He’s a player that I’ve always liked and I think he can have a real impact on this club,” he said. “I want to get to know him and see what makes him tick and watch him run around the field and do his thing.”

The performance of Martin in 2015 was a big reason the Mariners were able to bring him to town, acquiring him along with reliever Anthony Bass for James Jones, Tom Wilhelmsen and Patrick Kivlehan. He was a buy-low candidate after hitting .219 with a .264 on-base percentage just 26 runs scored in 95 games, missing a chunk of the season with a broken hamate bone in his right hand that was surgically repaired.

Those bad numbers aside, Martin is a strong defender in center field, has a pair of seasons with 30-plus steals to his credit, and is still just 27 years old. Add all of that to the potential of a slash line closer to the .274/.325/.364 he put up in 2014, and he’s a solid candidate for a breakout season.

“I think that he can be a guy that can make a difference for this team. He obviously has a lot of talent,” Blowers said.

Team: mariners

Brock and Salk podcast

Date Starting Pitcher
Monday, September 25 @ 6:40 pm

Mariners Roof Report

Brought to you by
Light Rain Likely then Showers And Thunderstorms
High 66° | Low 54°
Roof is open
Astros at Mariners today at 6:40pm

Brent Stecker

Seattle Mariners Scott Servais...

Brent Stecker

How concerning is Mariners’ series loss to Dodgers with 13 games left?

The Seattle Mariners' tough September continued as they were swept by the NL West champion Dodgers. So where are they with 13 games to go?

7 days ago

Seattle Mariners Bryan Woo...

Brent Stecker

Mariners Notebook: How Woo came up big; Kelenic’s other foot

Scott Servais and J.P. Crawford share what was so impressive about Bryan Woo's crucial win for the Seattle Mariners, plus an update on Jarred Kelenic's status.

11 days ago

Seattle Mariners Teoscar Hernández...

Brent Stecker

Playoff Race: Where the Mariners stand with 3 weeks to go

What does the AL playoff picture look like for the Seattle Mariners with only 22 games left to go in the regular season? We break it down.

13 days ago

Seattle Mariners Julio Rodríguez...

Brent Stecker

Mariners lucked out, but they can’t miss on huge opportunity now

The Seattle Mariners actually gained ground in the AL West race while dropping a series in New York. But now comes an opportunity they can't miss on.

21 days ago

Seattle Mariners...

Brent Stecker

Mariners Check-In: How Seattle’s trade deadline looks a month later

The Seattle Mariners left people scratching their heads with their moves at the trade deadline. How does it look now? Brent Stecker checks in.

21 days ago

Seattle Mariners Eugenio Suárez Ty France...

Brent Stecker

Mariners Playoff Race: Are M’s making Buhner-style surge for AL West?

The Seattle Mariners have played themselves into position for a wild card, but do they have more than that in them? A look at the playoff race.

1 month ago

Leonys Martin could ‘make a difference’ for Mariners, according to Mike Blowers