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The news from the Puget Sound Business Journal about Nintendo not wanting to sell the Seattle Mariners was predictable but disappointing. The Mariners can change general managers and managers all they want. But the organization needs a fresh start at top and a fresh start with new ownership. Until that happens the Mariners will continue to be a team that is mediocre.
Chuck Armstrong has been involved with the team for 29 years. Under his watch the team has a winning percentage of .477% (2,206-2,417). During that time the team has averaged 83 losses a season. Now, the numbers are not totally accurate because this year is not over yet and they are currently sitting at 89 losses. That number is likely to increase in the final five games.
Howard Lincoln was named Chairman and Chief Executive Officer of the Seattle Mariners on Sept. 27, 1999. Starting with the 2000 season, under Lincoln's watch, the M's have a winning percentage of .489% (1,108-1,155). And, like Armstrong, the teams average number of losses is around 83 (82.5 to be exact). Now, Lincoln was a part of the ownership group that purchased the team in 1992, so his relationship goes back even further, but I decided to just go with the numbers when he was the CEO.
The numbers are even worse for Jack Zduriencik and Eric Wedge in their tenure. Zduriencik was hired in 2009 and has a .442% winning percentage and only has one winning season, which was his first. If you take that season out his winning percentage is .421% and the last four years they have averaged 93 losses.
Wedge has been the skipper for three years and the team is 210-271 (.436%).
Those two have not been good, but you could make a solid argument that they took over a sinking ship. But, they must be better and unfortunately they have not been.
But, the overall issue remains Lincoln and Armstrong.
In the past 22 years when both Lincoln and Armstrong have been a part of the organization the team has made the postseason only four times. 12 of the past 22 years the team has lost 80 or more games.
No one likes to call for the firing of anyone. And if you are a Mariners fan you must recognize the good that both Lincoln and Armstrong did for this city. Under their watch the team did have their most success, albeit minimal. They both were integral in saving baseball in this town, which allows us today to have this conversation.
But the reality is that their time has passed them by and it's time for someone else to come in and see if they can get this turned around. I think it's time for Lincoln and Armstrong to do the right thing for the Seattle baseball community and resign from their positions and secure the sale of the Seattle Mariners.