The former Rangers prospect lost sleeper buzz entering last year with the Mariners, but he enjoyed his best overall fantasy season in a fresh crack at a full-time role. While Safeco Field has a pitcher-friendly reputation - and it hurt Leonys Martin's home batting average - he hit seven of his home runs there. His second-half slide (four after the All-Star break) was more of a correction, not necessarily proving his pop from the first half was completely fake. He'll likely fall short of 15 and won't help in batting average (note the 25.9 percent strikeout rate) or on-base percentage (his 7.6 percent walk rate last year was a career high). He'll continue to hit high in the order against right-handed pitchers, and it's notable that he improved against lefties last season. Fantasy players combing for stolen bases with a clear path to playing time should not pass up Martin as the draft winds down. He's swiped at least 24 bags in his first three full seasons, after all.
Martin cleared waivers and was outrighted to Triple-A Tacoma, Bob Dutton of The Tacoma News Tribune reports. Martin was off to a slow start to the season before being DFA'd by the Mariners, slashing just .111/.172/.130 over 58 plate appearances this season. His rough slash line, and the fact he is owed $4.85 million this season, likely deterred teams from putting in a waiver claim, allowing him to head back to Tacoma as part of the Mariners. He remains under Seattle's control moving forward, though the team would have to make a 40-man move should they want to recall him anytime in 2017, so he should stick in Triple-A for the foreseeable future
Martin was designated for assignment Sunday, Ryan Divish of The Seattle Times reports. The Mariners apparently grew tired of waiting for Martin's bat to come along, and with the 29-year-old possessing no remaining minor-league options, the organization made the tough decision to remove the outfielder from the 40-man roster. Prospect Dan Vogelbach was called up to take Martin's spot on the active roster, but it's expected that Jarrod Dyson will assume most of the starts in center field, while Taylor Motter eventually moves to a full-time role in the corner outfield once Jean Segura (hamstring) is back from the DL. Though Martin was batting just .111/.172/.130 over 58 plate appearances this season, his more palatable career line of .248/.301/.359 could be enough to convince another team to put in a waiver claim. Martin is owed $4.85 million this season.
Martin is sitting in place of Guillermo Heredia for the second consecutive game Saturday, Greg Johns of MLB.com reports. "I like the way Heredia is swinging the bat. He's given us a little energy," said manager Scott Servais. Martin has had a dreadful start to the season, slashing .111/.172/.130 with 14 strikeouts in 54 at-bats. Meanwhile, Heredia has made the most of his opportunities with a .333/.333/.500 slash line over 18 at-bats. It appears that Sevais is comfortable with giving Heredia the nod over Martin until Martin begins to regain his form.
Martin is not in the lineup for Friday's game against the A's, according to Bob Dutton of The Tacoma News Tribune. Martin has totaled just six at-bats against left-handers all season, so it should come as little surprise that he is being held out against A's starter Sean Manaea. Jarrod Dyson will cover center field for the Mariners on Friday night.
Martin is not in the lineup Tuesday against the Marlins, Shannon Drayer of MyNorthwest.com reports. Martin extended his hitting streak to three games on Monday, but he'll head to the bench as Jarrod Dyson slides over to center field and Guillermo Heredia takes over in left.