Salk: How Scott Servais has made a difference for Mariners
With the Mariners 20 games above .500 and still leading the American League West following Wednesday’s walkoff win over the Angels, 710 ESPN Seattle’s Mike Salk makes his case for manager Scott Servais to receive a contract extension with seven ways he has made a difference for the team.
• “Tough to play against.” It was the first thing Scott demanded when he got here and he finally has it. His teams compete every inning.
• Resilience. He has preached it and they have survived so many tough moments from injuries to travel to bad losses to Robinson Canó’s suspension.
• Camaraderie. It might be a better description than chemistry. He has made it a priority to make these guys get to know each other. That love you see in the dugout was created by the time spent learning about each other.
• Empowering leaders. Jean Segura, Nelson Cruz and Dee Gordon come to mind.
• Developing young players. At his core, Scott is a teacher. Mike Zunino, Mitch Haniger, Guillermo Heredia, Ben Gamel and others have improved under his tutelage.
• Positivity. It is a close relative to resilience. He has been relentlessly positive ever since he got here and it has infected his club. The players expect to succeed.
• Fundamentals. Maybe this is a corollary to his teaching ability, but his teams have gotten better at playing smart. That isn’t to say they don’t make errors, but they generally don’t beat themselves, especially mentally. His chalk talks and teaching ability has kept the game from speeding up on them.