Kelenic went 2-for-6 with two solo home runs and an additional run scored in Triple-A Tacoma's loss to El Paso on Thursday. The prized prospect wasted no time building an early case for his long-desired promotion to the big leagues, slugging a pair of homers in his 2021 minors debut after a successful spring training stint with the big-league club. Kelenic is fully expected to make his majors debut this season after some initial exposure to Triple-A arms.
Kelenic will likely make his major-league debut later in May, Jon Morosi of MLB Network reports. Kelenic will make his debut with Triple-A Tacoma on Thursday, while the Mariners have gotten lackluster performances at the plate from their left fielders so far this season. The 21-year-old is fully healthy after he dealt with a knee injury during spring training, and he figures to slot in as Seattle's primary left fielder once he eventually gets called up to the big leagues.
Kelenic will "play in the big leagues in the not-too-distant-future" according to general manager Jerry Dipoto, but the team's current outfield depth chart doesn't presently offer the 21-year-old an opportunity for promotion, Mark Feinsand of MLB.com reports. The prized prospect made quite an impression during Cactus League play and has made his burning desire to start competing at the big-league level very apparent, but he'll still continue to bide his time at the alternate training site for the moment. With Mitch Haniger, Taylor Trammell, a now healthy Kyle Lewis and Ty France holding down the three outfield spots and the designated hitter role, the organization feels Kelenic is best served getting everyday reps as opposed to only taking occasional major-league at-bats.
Kelenic was reassigned to minor-league camp Friday. Kelenic dealt with a knee injury earlier in camp but had a strong showing in Cactus League play. The 21-year-old slashed .333/.478/.778 with two home runs, seven runs and five RBI over nine spring games but will now join the minor-league camp. With the start of the minor-league season delayed, it's possible Kelenic will make his big-league debut before playing a game at Triple-A.
Kelenic corroborated the health of his previously injured right knee on multiple plays during a Cactus League win over the White Sox on Friday, Daniel Kramer of MLB.com reports. Kelenic returned to the starting lineup exactly two weeks after suffering a Grade 2 adductor strain and enjoyed an excellent all-around night. In going 2-for-3 with a double, an RBI and a run, the prized prospect flashed his wheels by using his speed on each of the three occasions he reached safely overall, leaving no doubt about his return to full health. The multi-hit effort pushed Kelenic's spring average to .333, but general manager Jerry Dipoto said earlier this week the 21-year-old is still likely to head to minor-league spring training or the alternate training site when the Mariners break camp.
|vs L.A. DODGERS||0||0||0||0||0||0||0|