M’s Fire Manager Don Wakamatsu

An article by posted on August 9, 2010

The Seattle Mariners have fired manager Don Wakamatsu.

Wakamatsu is the fifth manager in the majors to be fired this season. Baltimore’s Dave Trembley, Kansas City’s Trey Hillman, Arizona’s A.J. Hinch and Florida’s Fredi Gonzalez also were dismissed.

Seattle entered the day 42-70, the second-worst record in the American League.

Daren Brown, the manager of Triple-A Tacoma for the last three-plus season, is replacing Wakamatsu on an interim basis.

Along with Wakamatsu, bench coach Ty Van Burkleo, pitching coach Rick Adair and performance coach Steve Hecht were fired. 

“I have concluded that these changes needed to be made now and that they are in the best interest of the Mariners as we move forward,” Seattle general manager Jack Zduriencik said. “Don, Ty and Rick are all good baseball men and they have done their very best. But we are where we are. I no longer have confidence that Don, Ty and Rick are the right long-term fit for our organization. New leadership is needed and it is needed now.”

Larry Stone of the Seattle Times includes a few former and current Mets as possible replacements.

– Bobby Valentine. He’s got the most stature of all the guys sitting on the sidelines (and I don’t count Tom Kelley, who has shown no inclination to return to managing), he played for the Mariners, he managed in Japan, and has seemed open in the past to the possibility of managing the Mariners.

– Wally Backman. He flamed out when hired as Diamondbacks manager because of personal issues, but has returned to be a successful manager in the Mets system. Has Northwest ties and would be a fiery antidote to laid-back Wakamatsu.

– Willie Randolph. He interviewed for M’s job when Bob Melvin was hired, but has gained managerial experience since then.

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