Milkshakes do a body good. More specifically, Mariners prospect Nick Franklin’s body.
The young infielder’s has committed to woofing down 6,500 calories per day in an attempt to bulk up to 200 pounds. The 6’1 Franklin finished last season weighing just 162 pounds and truly believes his lack of body mass affected his production. Geoff Baker of the Seattle Times, who’s story introduced the baseball world to Franklin’s diet, quoted the infielder on the subject:
“Last year, during the season, I felt my body starting to collapse on me. At the end of August, I weighed 162 pounds and I was hitting balls to the gap that probably should have been out and they ended up going off the wall. One of them bounced to the wall.
“Those balls could have been out, so I wanted to put a lot of weight on and try to get to at least 200 pounds by the end of the spring, take the season from there and see whether I can maintain it.”
Franklin’s doing it by combining three huge meals with lots and lots of shakes. Here’s an example of a typical day of eating for him:
- Breakfast – six scrambled eggs (yolks included) and a protein shake or Chik-Fil-A sandwiches – 1,500 calories
- 10:30 a.m. – protein shake – 500 calories
- Lunch – Chipotle (double meat burrito bowl) or pasta – 1,500 calories
- 2:00 p.m. – protein shake – 500 calories
- 3:00 p.m. – protein shake – 250 calories
- Late afternoon – protein shake – 500 calories
- Dinner – Carrabba’s Italian Grill – 1,500 calories.
The task of consuming so much in one day sounds awesome in theory, but can prove miserable in practice. Again, Baker quotes the prospect:
“Honestly, there are some days where I just want to let it all go,” he said. “It’s hard to hold it down sometimes. Other than that, I feel like I’m on a full stomach the entire day. There’s not one point where I’m hungry. I’m always full when I’m eating, let’s just say that. I’m always eating when I’m not supposed to be eating.”
Apparently, Franklin’s diet is working. He arrived at spring training weighing 196 pounds, up 34 pounds from the end of last season and just 4 pounds away from his goal.
Franklin has been working with a strength coach throughout the weight-gain process to make sure those calories don’t just turn into fat. The diet is not for everyone – per his strength coach, it’s works for Franklin because of his youth, metabolism and work ethic.
Franklin is currently slated as a shortstop, but will work out at second base during the spring as well. He finished the season in the Pacific Coast League with Seattle’s AAA affiliate, the Tacoma Rainiers, where he hit .243 with 7 home runs and 29 RBIs in 267 at bats. Baseball America currently ranks him as the #79 prospect in all of baseball; MLB.com ranks him #47.