While I was enjoying my first almost full day off in 41 days, News Tribune columnist John McGrath was writing about his thoughts on the Mariners’ managerial situation. And in blunt terms, he writes that Eric Wedge should not return. It doesn’t seem like it will happen anyway. But McGrath offers his reasons why it shouldn’t.
From his column …
You might have rolled your eyes when you heard that “we should be as competitive as anybody” spiel, but I didn’t. I put the six-game jump of 2011 together with the eight-game jump of 2012 and figured 2013 could be remembered as a launching pad for legitimate playoff contention in 2014.
That was the plan, and Wedge had a record – 14 more victories last season than the team he inherited – to back it up.
Wedge no longer can point to his record of modest gains. The best reason to extend his soon-to-expire contract now has become the best reason for general manager Jack Zduriencik to shake Wedge’s hand, wish him well, and go to work on finding a replacement.
It’s not as though Wedge hasn’t had a shot at this managerial thing. Don Wakamatsu – fired four months into his second season, a year after his first Mariners team finished 85-77 – has reason to wonder if he got a fair shake.
Wedge? Between Cleveland and Seattle, he’s spent 10 seasons as a manager. Through those 10 years, his clubs have won more games than they’ve lost only two times. If the Mariners don’t sweep the A’s this weekend, Wedge will suffer 90 defeats for the third time in four seasons.
A measure of self-esteem is required to survive losing 90 games a year. Wedge faced some serious health issues this summer, but none involved a bruised ego.