Oh, Jesus, what a fucking disaster area this is. And in case you’re wondering why the Seattle Mariners seem so broken and hopeless, you have two choices: 1. Keep wondering; or 2. Read this doozy of an interview with Good Ship Mariner CEO/Chairman Howard Lincoln (above, on the hot seat) as conducted by the usually wonderful Art Thiel of the Seattle PI.
As a long-suffering Mariner fan, almost every response provoked a full-body clenching, but please allow me
copy/paste call this excerpt to your attention:
Q: No one could have anticipated the injuries to Erik Bedard, but how he related to teammates, manager and the club regarding himself and those injuries had to have been surprising. Did something get missed in the evaluation of his personality?
A: Because we were talking about such a big trade, a great deal of effort went into evaluating it. We talked to many who knew him on a day-to-day basis. With his record, he was one of the best MLB left-handed pitchers.
Certainly his personality was discussed. Whether his manner in dealing with the manager or media is a bit strange, if he had pitched up to expectations, we wouldn’t be having this discussion. But he was injured. Fortunately, we found the injury wasn’t as serious. We hope he’ll be ready by spring training.
I was a little surprised by what I read in the paper, but no more than I am with peculiarities of some other players. There’s a wide variety of personalities.
This kind of thing comes to the fore when a team is losing. When a team is winning, you can have 25 psychopaths down there and nobody cares.
I think we did due diligence. In hindsight, was it good enough? Probably not. But his personality is not the key. The key is the injury. We better not evaluate this trade as a disaster until it plays itself out.
I don’t know who Lincoln means by WE, but I’ll go ahead and call it the worst trade since the 10 year old Heathcliff Slocumb for Derek Lowe/Jason Varitek deal. Also, regarding the bit about not caring (or noticing) psychopaths on a winning ballclub, I would hasten to remind Lincoln that a famous psychopath named Al Martin played for that Mariner squad that won a league record 116 games in 2001.
After throwing former Mariner GM Bill Bavasi under the bus for the 2008 meltdown, Mr. Lincoln admits that he serves at the pleasure of Mr. Hiroshi Yamauchi, Nintendo’s (former-ish) Chairman and President:
(Mr. Yamauchi, in four-headed form, stolen from 4colorrebellion.)
According to Lincoln, Yamauchi’s batting average in player/personnel matters is “1.000″ based on his involvement in the Kaz Sasaki, Ichiro Suzuki and Kenji Johjima deals. By my math that seems about .333 too high.