Mariners Fire Manager Don Wakamatsu
All were hired by Jack Zduriencik when he took over as general manager after the 2008 season. Which means that just a year ago, they were in the process of leading the Mariners to a surprising 85-77 record in their first year on the job just one year after a 100-loss season that prompted the firing of GM Bill Bavasi and manager John McLaren.
That finish, coupled with the offseason acquisitions of Chone Figgins, Milton Bradley and Cliff Lee, had expectations sky-high in Seattle. The Mariners' 42-70 record falls far short of those expectations.
In the fallout of the disappointing season, Lee has been traded to division rival Texas and franchise cornerstone Ken Griffey Jr. retired after a messy farewell tour in which he was accused of sleeping in the dugout. Apparently that was enough for Zduriencik to clean out the proverbial coaching cabinet, despite last year's surprising turnaround.
Zduriencik must be serious about changing the clubhouse culture, though. The interim manager will be Daren Brown, currently the Mariners' Triple-A manager, while minor league catching coordinator Roger Hansen will act as bench coach and minor league pitching coordinator Carl Willis will be the acting pitching coach.
Wakamatsu is the fifth MLB manager to get the ax this season. Fired previously were Trey Hillman (Royals), Fredi Gonzalez (Marlins), Dave Trembley (Orioles) and A.J. Hinch (Diamondbacks).