Eric Wedge went 67-95 in his first season as Seattle’s manager, but the Mariners announced last night that he’ll be back in 2012 along with his entire coaching staff.
In a statement released to the media general manager Jack Zduriencik called them “a group of hard-working professionals.”
Greg Johns of MLB.com notes that this is the first offseason since 2001/2002 that the Mariners haven’t made at least one change on the coaching staff. That was Lou Piniella’s final season as manager and since then they’ve gone through eight different skippers.
Constant turnover hasn’t done the Mariners much good, but another 90-loss season next year would put Wedge and Zduriencik on the hot seat together.
For a few days, it looked like Aaron Judge was finally hitting his stride in the postseason. He was still striking out at a regular clip, piling more and more strikeouts atop the 16 he racked up in the Division Series, but he was mashing, too. He engineered a three-run homer during Game 3 of the Championship Series, followed by another blast and game-tying double in Game 4. His one-out double helped pad a five-run lead in Game 5, while his 425-footer off of Brad Peacock barely made a dent during a 7-1 loss in Game 6. And then Lance McCullers‘ curveball found and fooled him, as it did five of the 14 batters it met in Game 7:
The strikeout was Judge’s first of the evening and 27th since the start of the playoffs. No other major league batter has racked up that many strikeouts in a single postseason, though Alfonso Soriano’s 26-strikeout record in 2003 comes the closest. Within that record, Judge also collected three golden sombreros (four strikeouts in a single game), narrowly avoiding the dreaded platinum sombrero (five strikeouts in a single game).
It’s an unfortunate footnote to a spectacular year for the rookie outfielder, who decimated the competition with 52 home runs and 8.2 fWAR during the regular season and was a pivotal part of the Yankees’ playoff run. Thankfully, the image of McCullers’ curveball darting just under Judge’s bat won’t be the image that sticks with us for years to come. Instead, it’ll look something like this: