Topic: eric wedge; jack zduriencik; stroke; extension
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August 23, 2013 at 5:52 PM
First things first, the Mariners are still not confirming that general manager Jack Zduriencik has been extended for 2014. Zduriencik once again declined to comment on it, citing club policy about contracts. But when Zduriencik was reminded that the club did indeed publicize his previous contract extension back in 2011 (see snapshot of top part of release below), A PR staffer intervened and said that was a question best directed at officials making those types of decisions.
So far, those officials have declined comment, citing the same policy they ignored two years ago when they were happy to announce Zduriencik was coming back.
Which makes you wonder, if Zduriencik does indeed have the extension — which I’m told he does — why is the team balking at confirming it? Is it because they may not be through their evaluation of Zduriencik yet? Perhaps there’s another candidate who might become available? Is it because manager Eric Wedge does not have a similar extension after this year?
As I said last night on the show, the big news here isn’t that Zduriencik has an extension, which can easily be tossed away and bought out money-wise if the team wants to go in another direction for 2014. The big news is whether ot not the team is prepared to allow Zduriencik to work through 2014 — and what the evaluation that led to the team’s decision was based on. So far, the team won’t say, though Zduriencik insists he’s “raring to go” for 2014. The question is whether the Mariners have already told him he will be, and, if so, why they’re so hesitant to explain the decision-making process.
As for Wedge himself, he’s back in the dugout tonight for the first time. You may have read our interview with him two days ago, so I’m not going to cover all that other stuff a second time around. But Wedge reiterated today how seriously he’s taking the stroke he suffered and the fact he’ll have to alter some aspects of his behavior and how he deals with stress.
That part won’t be easy, since managing baseball requires passion. But Wedge insists he won’t need any reminders.
“I think I’ve got one hell of a reminder now,” he said. “I’ve got a great reference point here. I did not like not being in control. And I didn’t have it there for a couple days. And that’s one hell of a scary feeling. So, then, once they all figured it out, this, that and the other, I’ll never need another reminder again.”(more…)