Melvin job watch begins

DMZ · August 29, 2004 at 11:50 am · Filed Under Mariners 

Larry LaRue writes the first local column that says Melvin’s going to get fired.

His reasons are all screwy:

Last week at Safeco Field, the Old Lion and the Young One were all too evident. Melvin made the right calls – at one point bunting what could have been the winning run into scoring position, only to watch his best hitters fail to bring it home.

Piniella bunted, too, and his players got the job done.

Um.. not so much. And he insinuates (“these are things that have gone wrong, though I won’t directly say it’s his fault…”) that Melvin is responsible for a lot of woes (like pitching) that are due in large part to Bavasi’s awful moves.

His basic premise: that the team sucks and Melvin hasn’t done a good job, are sound.

Soon we should expect the dreaded “vote of confidence”.

Also interesting:

When his third option was signing Rich Aurilia or holding on to Carlos Guillen, everyone with a vote – including Melvin – went for Aurilia.

If true, this is crazy. What kind of an organization agrees so completely on a decision that was so close? Even we felt it was maybe going to be a modest upgrade, and had reservations about it. They’re the Mariners!

This only goes to prove something we’ve been saying for a long time — that the team doesn’t have anyone who dissents, who’s willing to say “hey, maybe this is a bad move for us.”


10 Responses to “Melvin job watch begins”

  1. Christopher on August 29th, 2004 12:38 pm

    Its pretty sad that the whole team agreed on the Carlos move when all the fans argued about it. Aurilia would have been a great move if it wasn’t obvious he was on the decline.

  2. David J Corcoran on August 29th, 2004 12:41 pm

    How many people had a vote? Lincoln, Bavasi and Melvin?

  3. Jim Thomsen on August 29th, 2004 1:16 pm

    Firing Melvin means NOTHING unless the people doiing the firing see that they themselves need to be fired as well. Not even a better in-game strategist or handler of personnel than Melvin can make morer than a few wins’ difference if the people in charge don’t give him a) good players with which to work; and b) create an atmosphere of intelligent confidence that lets everybody believe they will be allowed to succeed. Melvin is only a small part of the problem … a bigger part is that not enough people are pointing the fingers at the equally incompenet people with more influence over wins and losses, such as Bavasi, Armstrong and Howard Lincoln. They not only don’t know what they’re doing, but THEY HAVE NO IDEA that they don’t know what they’re doing … which is infinitely more dangerous to the long-term health of the franchise. Which is why going out and shopping for quality free agents may make only negligible difference when they’re added with no context and no coherent long-range plan. Which is why Dusty Baker or Tony LaRussa would probably lose 90 games a year if they managed these Mariners.

    Fire Melvin? Fire yourselves first, doofuses.

  4. adam on August 29th, 2004 2:51 pm

    I was hoping that we would hold on to Guillen and play him at 3rd…..what a bad idea….

  5. tede on August 29th, 2004 3:01 pm

    Well not completely screwy, since you agree with some of the other reasons (OT nitpick: FSNW just posted that George Sisler played for the Cardinals). I agree that the bunting episode is not the best illustration but the take home message is that the players do not fear accountability with Melvin, nor do umpires, nor do teams who bean the M’s best player in the head.

    Under Piniella would Olivo have had 8 PB in less than 32 games played with only a vague promise to work on his technique next spring?

    I appreciate the effort the Rainiers Temp Workers have put in under Rohn. It’s too bad he won’t get more than a token interview. My biggest fear is that they will hire Paul Molitor (combining the worst of the Bob Melvin/Maury Wills hires) or an Angel flunky/friend of Bavasi.

  6. Laurie on August 29th, 2004 3:50 pm

    good comment, Jim Thomsen – agree completely
    Lincoln doesn’t have a clue and it gets more obvious by the year – all other moves are almost irrelevant until ownership figures out that they have the wrong guy at the top

  7. stan on August 29th, 2004 10:18 pm

    Bob Melvin is a perfect fit for the 2004 Mariners: an inadequate manager for an inadequate team. There is nothing in Melvin’s performance that makes me believe he had any understanding of what was wrong with the Mariners. In April I was saying that Randy Winn and Raul Ibanez should not be in the same outfield. In August I am still saying that Randy Winn and Raul Ibanez should not be in the same outfield. No manager would have stopped the slide this year, but I do think that any other manager would have at least tried to put a different combination on the field before the season completely fell apart. Maybe McCracken or Jamal Strong in center, Winn in left and Ibanez at first would not have led to many more victories but it would have at least been better to look at. Bottom line is I don’t think Melvin can evaluate talent.

  8. Matt on August 30th, 2004 1:50 am

    FWIW Peter Gammons is already indicating that the Angels bench coach could be in line to take a managerial position next year, including the Seattle one.

    Then again it is Gammons.

  9. Ralph Malph on August 30th, 2004 8:51 am


    You may be right that Dusty Baker or Tony LaRussa would lose 90 games with this collection of players. Since they’re on pace to lose 100, that would mean Melvin is costing them 10 wins.

    That might be a bit high, but it’s certainly reason to fire him. The difference between the best manager in baseball and the worst might be 10 wins.

  10. Paul Weaver on August 30th, 2004 12:59 pm

    The difference between the best and worst manager in baseball may could even be 5 wins – it would make a difference.
    Melvin hasn’t really evolved from bench coach. He may have been too comfortable his first year of managing having a staff of proven veterans who were performing (for the most part).
    I agree with the Jim Thomsen post – upper management needs more of a head check than lower management.
    Bavasi’s record is the easiest to attack right now. Even though we can all discuss it in hindsight, I remember being critical of his moves before the season began.
    A new Manager should come with a new GM – if we’re lucky.