Mariners enter transformative new MLB season

In late March, the 2023 season of Major League Baseball kicked off, featuring a set of new rules incorporated into the game. How will the Mariners fare?

Amare Srinivasan, Staff Reporter

The 2022 season ended in a promising trajectory for the Mariners. After finally ending their 21 year drought of not making the playoffs, the Mariners knocked off the Toronto Blue Jays in the wildcard, but fell in the ALDS to the eventual champions, the Houston Astros. After their season ended, the Mariners went into the offseason determined to make the team as well rounded as possible.
While the Mariners did lose key bats in free agency, they attempted to upgrade and retool the roster around their core pieces. The main acquisitions the Mariners made was trading for former all-star and veteran outielder Teoscar Hernandez from Toronto. In addition to this, the Mariners traded designated hitter Jesse Winker and infielder Abraham Toro to Milwaukee for 2nd baseman Kolton Wong. The Mariners also sent former American League rookie of the year Kyle Lewis to Arizona for catcher Cooper Hummel.
However, offseason acquisitions weren’t the only change in baseball this year. New rules were implemented by the league, including a “pitch clock” which gives the pitcher a limited amount of time to start winding up, and the batter a time limit for getting in his stance. The rule was implemented in order to speed up the game, and to increase viewership among the sport. The league also decided to make the bases larger in order to increase the chances of a stolen base.
Senior Kaden Larson approves of MLB’s rule changes.
“The new rules are beneficial to baseball because of the increased action in less time,” Larson said. “These rules will benefit teams who steal bases often, and the pitch clock can help runners time up with the pitcher.”
The Mariners have now started their 2023 campaign, but have not started as planned. Beginning the season with a 6-8 record (as of 4/11), the Mariners are still adjusting to their newly put together roster, and the rule changes around the league.
“The Mariners can turn it around by calling up young pitching talents like Emerson Hancock and Bryce Miller from the minor leagues, by moving Jarred Kelenic higher in the batting order, and by waiting for Robbie Ray to come back healthy,” Larson said.
After a promising 2022 campaign, the Mariners are looking to get back on track and get accustomed to MLB’s new set of game-changing rules.