By Brent Stecker
The more the Mariners lose, the more fuel is added to the proverbial fire underneath general manager Jack Zduriencik’s seat.
“Bob and Groz” discuss Zduriencik’s status in the video below, but earlier on their show on Friday, Baseball America executive editor Jim Callis said a change at the position may not be the best move for the franchise.
“People can debate Jack’s effectiveness as a general manager because (the Mariners) haven’t won at the Major League level, and they aren’t much improved in terms of wins and losses from five years ago. But Jack’s track record in terms of knowing amateur talent is pretty good,” Callis said. “You look at where he was previously, Milwaukee was a terrible franchise for a long time until they hired Jack as scouting director. Pretty much with one pick in each round (of the draft) … he built that team into a contender.”
Callis mentioned that while prized prospects Justin Smoak, Jesus Montero and Dustin Ackley haven’t produced in Seattle, Zduriencik has done a good job restocking a farm system that was left in disarray by previous GM Bill Bavasi.
“Fans that want to get rid of Jack, you might wanna be careful what you wish for, because I do think in terms of young talent, there’s a lot more young talent in the system than there was five years ago. It just hasn’t come to fruition yet,” said Callis. “Even if Montero, Ackley and Smoak don’t pan out, there’s still a lot of talented guys in the minors. If they do get rid of Jack, I think it would be a position a lot of guys would want to have because you do have a lot of young players to work with. You could get a couple breaks and that team could be a lot better pretty quick. It just hasn’t happened yet.”
Regardless of what shape the Mariners farm system is in, Bob Stelton and Dave Grosby say the Major League team needs to do more to get the pressure off Zduriencik.