Report: Jarred Kelenic, MLB's No. 4 Prospect, to Be Called Up by Mariners

Jenna CiccotelliAnalyst IIIMay 11, 2021

FILE - In this March 9, 2019 file photo, Seattle Mariners' Jarred Kelenic chases a ball during a spring training baseball game in Phoenix. Kelenic is one of the top 20-30 prospects in all of baseball is currently one of the centerpieces of the Mariners' rebuild. (AP Photo/Sue Ogrocki, File)
Sue Ogrocki/Associated Press

One of the top prospects in baseball is expected to join the big leagues this week, according to ESPN's Jeff Passan.

The Seattle Mariners will reportedly call up outfielder Jarred Kelenic, who is ranked as the No. 4 overall prospect by MLB, in time for the first game of their series against Cleveland on Thursday.

The 21-year-old was the No. 6 overall pick by the New York Mets in the 2018 draft.

Jarred Kelenic dealt with a strained adductor muscle in his knee this season but has managed to go 9-for-19 at the plate, with two home runs and a pair of steals through five games with the team's Triple-A affiliate, the Tacoma Rainiers, this season.

Mariners Player Development @MsPlayerDev

About last night... @JKelenic_1019 is the first player to hit two home runs in his Triple-A debut since Luis Robert did it in 2019.

The promotion is apparently a long time coming for Kelenic. In February, he told Bob Nightengale of USA Today that the team kept him at their alternate training site in the pandemic-shortened 2020 season as a punishment after he turned down a contract extension more than a year earlier. Mariners general manager Jerry Dipoto denied the allegation.

"It wasn’t just communicated one time to me. It was told to me several times," Kelenic said. "That’s the God’s honest truth. It got old.’"

His comments came around the same time that team president and CEO Kevin Mather resigned after comments he made at a local Rotary Club meeting became public. In video footage, Mather made disparaging remarks about players' English abilities as well as service-time rules—admitting that the team would keep the top prospect in the minor leagues to start the year in an effort to push off his free agency.

“Not to be given that opportunity was so beyond frustrating," Kelenic said in February. "I feel that guys should be rewarded for their play, and have the best guys on the field, especially when you talk about a team that hasn’t gone to the playoffs in 20 years, and your best prospects are just sitting there watching."

The Mariners are moving along in the AL West, in third place at 18-17—just two and a half games behind the first-place Oakland Athletics.