Nick Franklin has been in a nearly-three-week batting slump that has effectively knocked him out of Rookie of the Year consideration for now.
It was 19 days ago that Franklin clubbed a pair of home runs to give him 10 on the season.
Since that time, he’s hit .113 with an on-base-plus-slugging percentage (OPS) of just .378 with 20 strikeouts in his last 53 at-bats. That and his defense has been spotty at times, including last night on that pop-up that fell between him and Brad Miller.
Still, as I mentioned this morning, young players will have their struggles. Mariners manager Robby Thompson said in his media session not long ago that he is sticking with Franklin in the No. 2 spot in the order for now and hopes he can play himself out of this funk.
“We’ve still got confidence in him and we’re going to keep him there and hopefully he comes out of this thing,” Thompson said. “And if it continues on or gets worse, maybe we’ll have to make a move or drop him down a little bit. But I don’t think hitting second is anything that’s putting pressure on him or anything. The only reason we’d move him out of there is to maybe relax him a little bit. And maybe take a little pressure off him that we think he’s not feeling — but maybe he is.”
Franklin did get a late hit last night when he could have just given the at-bat away in a blowout loss. It’s worth noting that it isn’t only young players who get impacted by slumps. Raul Ibanez was on a torrid streak right before the All-Star Break, then didn’t hit a home run for over a month.
“He’s put together some decent at-bats, to go along with some at-bats that have not been as good as they’ve been in the past,” Thompson said of Franklin. “But that’s to be expected. So, I think he’s going to be fine.”More