Morosi: Mariners’ Servais as ‘capable and effective’ a manager as there is in MLB

Jul 22, 2022, 10:46 AM

Mariners Scott Servais...

Scott Servais and Eugenio Suarez celebrate after game two of a doubleheader against the Washington Nationals on July 13, 2022. (Scott Taetsch/Getty Images)

(Scott Taetsch/Getty Images)

Last year, Mariners manager Scott Servais led his roster to a 90-win season and finished second in American League Manager of the Year voting.

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This year, he’s showing once again how great of a manager he is, according to one MLB insider.

Jon Morosi of MLB Network joined Wyman and Bob on Seattle Sports 710 AM on Thursday to discuss the job that Servais has done leading the Mariners to a 14-game win streak after a very poor month of May that had many throwing in the towel for his team.

“I think he’s done a great job. And obviously we talked about last year him being a Manager of the Year candidate, I still think he’s in that vein right now,” Morosi said.

As the Mariners return from the All-Star Break and begin the second half of the season, they find themselves 51-42 and holding the second of three AL Wild Card spots. A big reason why, Morosi contends, is that the seventh-year manager is pressing a lot of the right buttons, which isn’t easy to do.

“You look around the major leagues, and you know you’ve got things going in the right direction when if you asked all Mariners fans, ‘OK, if you could replace your manager with anybody else in the league, would you do it? Who would it be?’ — and maybe they would have an issue with a bullpen decision here and there, but that’s true of every manager — and there’s not really anybody that I would think of in that respect that I would say that Scott Servais is not as capable,” Morosi said. “He is as capable and effective a manager as anybody else in the game. I really believe that. I don’t think there’s a manager that the Mariners would trade him for today, and that’s a pretty strong statement to make.”

Morosi thinks Servais has an excellent understanding of his roster, and that he clearly knows how to win with a different-looking roster.

“Last year, he won with a little bit of a different team with all the negative run differential, the fun differential that we talked about. And this year, he overcame a pretty dreadful start, I mean, it was mediocre at best,” he said. “And the Angels looked unbeatable and for two months, we were talking like, ‘Oh my gosh, the Angels are for real.’ And then it all collapsed for them … Now the Mariners have a path to the playoffs.”

Where Servais really stands out, Morosi said, is when it comes to handling his pitching staff.

“It’s not an accident — and certainly there’s some luck involved — but you don’t bring in two (young) pitchers and have them pitch as well as (George) Kirby and (Logan) Gilbert have, and integrating a young major arm in (Andrés) Muñoz to the bullpen, and manage their innings, manage their health and basically have the same core five starting pitchers effectively all season long, without knowing what you’re doing in terms of how you manage people’s workloads,” he said. “I mean, that’s skill.”

Servais, a longtime MLB catcher before becoming a director of player development and later an assistant general manager, has an excellent “baseball acumen” that’s always stood out to Morosi.

“I think he’s just a really good baseball guy. He understands development because that was his job in Texas and with the Angels to an extent. He gets it,” he said. “I think right now the Mariners are in very, very good stead and in very, very good hands.”

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Morosi: Mariners’ Servais as ‘capable and effective’ a manager as there is in MLB