Though the calendar only shows April 20 and the 2021 season has such a long way to go, things are looking pretty nice for the Seattle Mariners right about now. After taking down the best team in baseball Monday night (Mariners 4, Dodgers 3), the Mariners are now 11-6. That puts them in first place in the AL West by 1 1/2 games and tied for the best record in the AL with the Red Sox. Only the Dodgers have a better record in all of baseball.
It gets better, too.
That would be 2020 AL Rookie of the Year, Kyle Lewis. He's been on the injured list so far this season due to a deep bone bruise in his right knee that he suffered late in spring training. He has been activated to the active roster now in time for Tuesday's afternoon tilt with the Dodgers.
Lewis, 25, has appeared in 76 MLB games to this point. He's slashed .264/.347/.477 (127 OPS+) with eight doubles, 17 homers, 41 RBI, 47 runs and five steals. For those curious, he was stinging the ball this spring, too (.297/.386/.568).
Lewis figures to take back over in center field immediately upon his return. Youngster Taylor Trammell has done a great job defensively in center and would make for a pretty stellar defensive outfield in moving to left field with Mitch Haniger in right and Lewis in center.
In the lineup, Mitch Haniger and Ty France have worked well at the top and Lewis hit third most games last season, so I'd expect him to jump right back into the slot, knocking Kyle Seager down to cleanup.
The Mariners' impressive start has featured series wins over the Giants, Twins and Astros along with the win Monday night securing them, at-worst, a two-game split with the defending champions. And now they are getting one of their best players back.