While Pablo Sandoval's weight is again a controversy and people are talking about how many pounds Mike Trout put on this offseason, one prospect for the Seattle Mariners is on the opposite end of the weight spectrum. He's desperately trying to add it.
Nick Franklin, a 21-year-old shortshop who was the Mariners' first-round pick in 2009, eats 6,500 calories per day in a quest to reach 200 pounds. So far, it's working. Franklin weighed 162 at the end of last season and reported to training camp at 196, according to The Seattle Times.
Franklin tells the Times that he felt his body "starting to collapse" on him last season, which he split during Double-A and Triple-A. Many balls he hit could have gone out of the park, this former "rail-thin kid" estimates, if he had more weight behind him.
Here's more on Franklin's mouth-stuffing regimen from Geoff Baker at the Times:
Franklin starts each morning off with a 1,500-calorie breakfast consisting of six scrambled eggs — yolks included — and a high-caloric protein shake.
By 10:30 a.m., he'll have another 500-calorie shake and then throw in a 1,500-calorie lunch by noon. At 2 p.m., there's another 500-calorie shake, a 250-calorie shake at 3 p.m. and then a 500-calorie shake to "hold me over" until a 1,500-calorie dinner.
When he doesn't have time to cook breakfast, he'll pop by the local Chick-fil-A. Franklin has already been spotted in the clubhouse here scarfing down chicken sandwiches before team workouts.
His lunch choices often involve Chipotle Mexican Bar and Grill. "If you get a bowl there, it's really big," he said. "Double-chicken is like 800 calories — it's insane." He also likes The Corner Bakery because "the pasta there is really good, too."
To complement all the eating, Franklin has upped his weight training and bulked up, primarily, below the waist. He's able to squat 425 pounds now and his trainer is monitoring both his body fat and his mobility. Franklin wants power, but he doesn't want to turn into a first baseman either. Mobility is key at shortshop.
One of the more interesting/disgusting parts of the Franklin story is when he says "it's hard to hold it down sometimes." Here's hoping a grounder doesn't take a bad hop, hit him in the belly and send everything spewing out on the field.
If all this works out for Franklin, Chipotle could become the next performance-enhancing drug of choice for baseball players.
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