OK, something really weird happened. And by "weird" we mean, like, why did it take 5 days to get water to the SuperDome, or why would Hillary compare June Cleaver to Al-Qaeda, or even worse, why would Lloyd McClendon be manager today instead of The Edgar.
... When something really weird happens, the tinfoil hats find it easy to state a Unified Theory of Everything. The people got no help during Katrina because G.W. Bush doesn't like poor people. Hillary compares June to Osama because she's a reptilian alien. And Lloyd is still here because we're really into viewing that good old "just before you get sick" facial expression. Reminds you of staying home from school and reading comic books.
But! You go to Lookout Landing, which is far from a tinfoil hat brigade cough ahem, and they have no idea on what went wrong with Jack Zduriencik. Here, see for yourself. This from the comments. Take out a #2 pencil, kiddies, and take your pick:
- He liked home runs too much (cf. Pete Carroll likes touchdowns too much)
- He's too saber, and sabe isn't the point of being an administrator
- His #1 draft picks never landed a glove on the talent-pyramid heavy bag
- The Cano deal left them hamstrung (hunh? Are we in 2019 already?)
- His physical appearance vaguely reminds you of ... ummmm .... the Bill Bavasi years (dodged that one, didn't I)
- The entire franchise knows "ZERO" about baseball itself (Jason Churchill)
- He wasn't forward thinking
- The org is too committed to Japanese pitchers
- He had a couple of okay trades, but the others were feebleminded
Note that every theory of Jack Z's death has one (1) strong advocate. That being the commenter who commented 'em. So this is a delicious situation, that you and I were standing on the very corner of the intersection when the cement truck bombed through it ... but we have no idea what happened.
We really don't. At SSI there has been little consensus on what Zduriencik is good at, bad at, okay at, or anything at.
Calling the SSI Think Tank! If they can't help us, nobody can!
Logically, Mr. Spock, you've got two basic TYPES of causes of the patient's death. Like all real people die of natural causes, or not, but the "not" includes a lot of sick slop. (As you've noticed, the tone of this post is rather mortuary-scented. Dr. D is nothing if not mood-appropriate to his setting.)
Let's divide the causes of 7-year GM baseball death as follows:
1) Talent pyramid too small
2) Talent underperforming
Ah! That helps already.
It's true that if Ackley, Montero, and Smoak had become three Mike Trouts, the talent pyramid would be visible from Saturn and SSI wouldn't be here today. (Here in the autopsy room, we mean. We hope.) Yes, there were opportunities to be better with the talent pyramid.
But! Let's not lose a sense of proportion here. On March 31, 2015, the Mariners were considered the American League's very most talented team, absolutely #1. They had the 25-man roster MOST likely to win the pennant. This opinion was held all across baseball, by NL East talent scouts, by GM's quoted to the media, by the local blog-o-sphere, by Baseball Prospectus, by everybody. The Mariners were just stacked, baby.
You don't take this type of situation and claim, after the 90-loss fact, that there was no talent. You file this type of situation under the category of "You had it, and you botched it."
ADD TO THAT the fact that in the previous season, 2014, the Mariners missed the playoffs by 1 game. So, in Zduriencik's year 6 and 7, he had talent worthy of the World Series. Get that straight.
What, exactly, caused the 2015 talent to underperform so badly? < ---- See, already we're making progress.