CEO John Stanton Speaketh
And non-CEO Dr. D quibbleth


The Seattle Times interviewed John Stanton twice regarding Mariners past (2017) and future (2018), once by Ryan Divish and another by Larry Stone.  The 'Frame will Query, will Quoth and will Quibble in order to extract the essential info for the Denizens' time-pressed needs.  All in its own irreverent little brand of shtick, of course.


QUERY:  Are the M's about to go big-game hunting?

QUOTH:  "I'd rather have Mitch Haniger than Richie Sexson.  With great confidence that Mitch will be an All-Star and people are gonna want 17 on the backs of their jerseys and the like."

QUIBBLE:  Dr. D is glad to know that the base of the M's talent pyramid is far, far more evil than the casual onlooker ever thought possible.  A vote of confidence from the M's internals is a vote he can live with.  Um.


QUERY:  What does Stanton expect in 2018?

QUOTH:  "To make the playoffs."

QUIBBLE:  Larry Stone points out gently that nobody thinks much of the M's farm system.  He then becomes the 237th Mariner writer to bring up the Darvish-Otani parlay. Stanton signs off on the "room for growth" in the M's payroll.  Well, we could be watching left tackles blow out ACL's.


QUERY:  Any new-CEO impressions of his new GM and coach?

QUOTH:  "I loved the way they battled.  ...when we got Paxton and Felix back and the end and were only 2-3 games out, I thought there is going to be some magic.  And it didn't."

QUIBBLE:  The Mainframe fervently insists that we re-write the scripts to retrofit the outcomes.  If the Rams catch that final TD pass a few days ago, the narratives all change.  And the 'Frame insists that a break here a break there, people are writing about a lot more talent than they are willing to concede right now :- )


QUERY:  Like Art Howe argued so self-interestedly in Moneyball, does a manager or GM need a long-term deal to be effective?"

QUOTH:  Um, no.

QUIBBLE:  The 'Frame believes that the Gentle Denizen will find that success creates its own credibility.  Ask DaddyO and Walter Alston.



Shannon Drayer has yet another exit piece from John Stanton.  If you find a takeaway in there, toss it into the 'pot and Dr. D will ladle heartily into his own bowl.






But first,

                       ^half the post seems to be doubled^

I really think the year is largely different if simply Smyly isn't in WBC cranking it up and plays out the season.  Just give us that one.  You can take all the other injuries and keep them.  But if it's not a WBC year this could have been a great one.  It was a WBC year.  Can we learn to be more certain the WBC won't affect MLB seasons?  Something here needs to change.  Start it after the World Series instead?  No fix seems perfect but we have to do better.

So I totally agree that If you give them injuries at realistic odds instead of the 2017 Marinjures that took the field they had a good shot at the playoffs.

His backing up Dipoto and Servais mostly just makes sense.  What did you expect him to say?  What he said about Dipoto was probably better than that.  His thoughts on Servais I didn't read as much support in.  Maybe that's partially my bias.  I'm certain Dipoto has earned respect in the chair.  Not so certain Servais belongs.

Haniger over Sexton is a relief to hear.  They want to add but I look at almost all the Free agents and see aged veterans almost anywhere that I see players available who have put up good results in the past.  There are plenty of Sextons out there.  Who would be more Haniger like?  Ohtani, Hosmer and that's about it for anything resembling youth or uphill side of their career.  Except trades of course.  Yu Darvish and a couple other expensive starters might just fit that still.

The Other Billy Zoom's picture

Oh Oh Oh otani is under contract to the Nippon Ham Fighters.

No MLB club or it's contractor and consultants can talk to him without jeopardizing their getting slapped byMLB which can lower the boom and eliminate them from the possibility of signing him.

Somehow, media types don't understand why they can't get quotes on the matter.

No news is the only answer they will get on the matter because the clubs won't say diddley.

You can bet that DePoet and Cash Man and the other GM types that have gone to Japan to watch him were not going over to watch him, they were just checking out baseball in Japan.

Yeah, sure, like Laos and Cambodia incursions by the CIA in the sixties, they were just flying over the top to take a look at the terrain.

You can bet there is plenty of subtrafuge on this matter, but you won't see a word about it ... especially when both countries have a championship series going on.

Yeserday, Oh Oh Oh Otani had surgery on his right ankle and the Ham Fighters reported he would be fully ready to play in 3 months.

Oh Oh Oh the Ham Fighters candy counter will be open soon with a lineup of customers for a customized lottery drawing, and it will only cost Twenty Million from the lucky winner for a place in line.

Until then, the media should just shut up with the questions, or risk having a friend or relative drafted because they push the issue oh No, that could never happen in America (again).

One of Dr. D's best quotes ever, applies:  Winston Churchill's "A dog looks up to you, a cat looks down on you, a pig looks you in the eye". 



Walter Alston.

Growing up I was privileged to have a number of terrific, local sports icons, men of high achievement, who were defined by their humble, steady competence over years. These men were content to let others be flashy, or fiery, or incendiary, or otherwise draw attention to themselves. They let their results speak for themselves.

UCLA's John Wooden was the most celebrated example. He was humble, but people talked about him, gave him acclaim. Behind him, as if in the shadows, was Walter Alston, longtime manager of the Dodgers. Sure, by the time the mid-70's rolled around he was no longer sufficient for the rapidly changing game, no longer had the energy or focus to lead the franchise into the greatness of the Lasorda era. But I was able to witness the greatest stretch of his long career.

Alston became manager of the Dodgers the year before I was born, replacing Charlie Dressen in 1954. The team then from Brooklyn had reached the World Series four times in it's previous seven seasons, losing EVERY time. Their embattled cry was, "Wait 'til NEXT year!"

Alston inherited a lineup that included Duke Snider, Roy Campanella, Gil Hodges, Pee Wee Reese, Duke Snider, Carl Furillo, an aging Jackie Robinson,  and a young Jim Gilliam. His pitching staff included Carl Erskine, a young Johnny Podres, Don Newcombe, and an aging Preacher Roe. They were the best offensive team in the National League, and middle of the pack in pitching.

In Alston's second season at the helm he not only steered the team to the World Series, his team did something never before done in franchise history going back into the 1880's when the team nickname was "Bridegrooms," not "Dodgers." Nine times the franchise had reached the World Series. But Alston's 1955 team WON one. They lost a series again in '56, but won again in '59 a year after moving to Los Angeles. 

All of this history was unknown and irrelevant to me as a kid, although on Dodgers broadcasts Vin Scully loved to narrate anecdotes about the fabled players and teams of the '50's. All I knew as a boy coming of age as a baseball fan, was that Walter Alston was the manager when the Dodgers won the Series in 1963 in a sweep over the legendary (and HATED!) New York Yankees. Then in '65 they beat the Twins in the Fall Classic. A year later they would again make the Series but lose in a sweep at the hands of Baltimore.

In all this excitement, the game, the players, and even the heralded announcer took center stage. Alston sat in the dugout and trudged slowly to the mound and back as needed. He was soft spoken. He seemed never in a hurry, or nervous, or frustrated, or...anything other than a steady hand at the helm. If Alston was in charge, things were under control and in good hands.

I will say this. Vin Scully worshiped Walter Alston. Oh, he would still sometimes scratch his head out loud about certain managerial decisions that didn't make sense to him. But Scully spoke in quiet, respectful terms when it came to "The Skipper." 

After 1966 the Dodgers entered the doldrums and Walter Alston, schooled in the '50's, entered his latter years and the game began to pass him by. LA did not make it back to the Series until 1974, when the brash A's easily swatted away the tradition-laden Dodgers in five games. Alston's last few years it was clear that the franchise and the team needed new blood. The polite, soft-spoken Alston gave way to a manager more suited to the '70's, the brash, irrepressible, foul-mouthed man who bled Dodger Blue, Tommy Lasorda.

I enjoyed the Lasorda years immensely. The team that began to take shape in the last years of Alston charged into consecutive World Series in '77 and '78, losing both to the Reggie Jackson Yankees in six games. (I could say they lost one of those series to Jackson's protruding posterior.)

I have always appreciated Walter Alston. I agree with Vin Scully, he was a man worthy of great respect, not only for his results, but for the way he carried himself as he achieved them. In fact, it speaks volumes about Alston that it seems out of place to say he achieved them. One can only be true to the spirit of Walter Alston by saying his teams achieved them. He was just the steady, unspectacular man in the dugout.


Re: Stanton and the Mariners, it appears Stanton is as tone-deaf as his predecessors. Mariners fans reading this will expect more the same of what they've been getting for sixteen years. Fool me once, shame on you. Fool me twice, shame on me. Fool me over and over again, shame on us all. Brave offseason statements were made under Bavasi, under Zduriencik, and now DiPoto. "We intend to make the playoffs." My reaction is, "Wake me when you do. Until then, just shut up and get after it. Impress me with your deeds, not your words."

This team has problems that transcend the players that fill the roster. 


You would rather he not answer the question?  Or state misgivings...or doom?

I'm not syncing with your comment.  :)


It's a matter of tone more than content, although in this case content contributes to tone. 

"I feel your pain. We thought we had a chance. But circumstances beyond our control thwarted our hopes. But you watch, with a few tweaks next year things will be different."

For any single offseason this could be a reasonable tone. But after so many years with the same message (except for those where a teardown was required), it's a tone-message played in repeat mode.  One could easily imagine the same comments from Howard Lincoln or Chuck Armstrong. 

After a certain point, this "disappointed for the fans" schtick has to give way to, "We are pierced to the core that we didn't make the playoffs." To, "We are so upset that we are coming at this offseason like a cornered lion. We'll scratch, wel'll claw, we'll bite. Mark my words, every breath of ours is pointed toward forcing our way into the playoffs."

I do not expect exact words like this, of course, but a tone like this. Of course, it has to be true. It has to be credible rather than a public pose. And that's the real problem, the "play-it-again-Sam" Howard Lincoln-recalling session by Stanton, with all it's tone-deafness, does in fact accurately represent how the Mariners look at things. They are not a cornered lion. They are an abused animal like you see in those adopt-a-poor-suffering-dog commercials. Whimper, whimper. Poor us. We try. Why don't things ever work out for us? But we luv you, don't you feel sorry for us? Please keep petting us.


Of who actually is there.  I believe the players controlled through the next several seasons would rank top 5 ever for a Mariners team going in to the off-season.  These are also not the same leaders who made the "same 'ol" decisions people are comparing this years to.  I won't blame whoever replaces Trump for what Trump has done.  And I wouldn't have pulled the trigger this year.  While it was a team that had the talent on paper, that paper was never the lineup card.  I call them Marinjers because there were so many key injuries they didn't have a chance.  I don't want to lose sight of the fact that this year looked potentially screwed before the season even started and certainly shortly after it got underway.  Lets break it down by players significantly injured (10 day +) in each month, since I think some may have lost sight.


















    Segura again

    Felix again

    Paxton again

    Haniger again




    Phelps again

And that's just through the first 3 months of the season.  Be assured it continued.  Was it avoidable in player acquisition?  Are these guys who just get injured and you should have known better?  Mostly no. Mostly these are guys that rarely if ever miss significant time with injury previously.


Not so much on the Dodger Dynasty (my term); while 1965 represented my awakening to MLB as a kid, both playing Little League and glued to NBCs Game of the Week featuring Curt Gowdy, Tony Kubek and eventually Joe Garagiola.  At that moment I worshipped the champion Dodgers especially Drysdale and Koufax and followed the Twins, BoSox and Orioles lineups pretty closely.  That admiration eventually morphed to the Big Red Machine teams followed by more Dodgers and Yankees greatness. Include some Angels reference material due to their association with Seattle's PCL club and hours playing Strat-O-Matic define my adolescent years. Of course I reserved my greatest attachment to our locals:  first the Pilots and then Ms. To whom I ask, WHEN, WHEN CAN WE EXPECT GREATNESS?   Ever?  How long must we wait?  I am certain I read here, where someone more knowledgeable than I asked why is it, that other organizations may stink year-to-year,  can produce a champion every so often, think Arizona, Miami,  Toronto (kinda)?  While Seattle languishes from mediocre to awful year after year?  Just asking. I can recite the answers describing bad coaching to crummy trainers, bad medicine to plain old laziness and lack of motivation. I can't explain the uninterrupted years of incompetence plaquing this organization.  And still I ROOT.

I am mostly in denial regarding the 1995-2001 M's history and the UP years as too short to define greatness and apparently UNREPEATED.  It represents an aberration of their past in my view, mostly make-believe versus a period in which they built-upon, which they did not.  Pathetic really.

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