Marc Carig of the Star-Ledger is, in my view, the best Yankees beat writer there is and is one of the best beat writers in all of Major League Baseball.
I like his temperament. I like that he always manages to be even-handed while not checking his brain or his opinions at the door. He’s smart and he’s fair and his writing is informed by a curiosity about and appreciation of the game that has long left the writing of many other beats, if indeed they ever had it.
Today Moshe Mandel of The Yankee Analysts has a lengthy and highly informative Q&A with Carig that sheds a huge amount of light on the way a good beat writer approaches his or her job. It’s required reading for anyone who ever plans on criticizing someone in the media. And criticism is totally fair game according to Carig. The point is to know what the hell these guys do before you rip them.
Just fantastic reading if you care at all about baseball media.
Two weeks ago the Seattle Mariners gave GM Jerry Dipoto a contract extension. Today they did the same for manager Scott Servais. They are calling it a “multi-year contract extension,” though the exact number of years and the money is not reported. The money rarely is reported for the managers.
Servais has a record of 222–199 (.527) midway through his third season as the M’s skipper. That, actually, makes him the fourth-winningest manager in Mariners history if you can believe it. Twenty men have held that job. A lot of them helmed some pretty bad teams.
The Mariners released a quote from Dipoto regarding Servais:
“Scott has created a culture here in Seattle that allows players to be successful,” Dipoto said. “They are encouraged to be themselves, which has resulted in a loose environment, while still maintaining the focus on team above self. His leadership has also been evident through the ongoing growth and impact of one of the best coaching staffs in Major League Baseball.
“He has been the right leader at the right time for the right team and I look forward to many more years together.”
The Mariners are currently 58–39, good for the fourth-best record in the Major Leagues. If the season ended today they’d be in the playoffs for the first time since 2001, baseball’s longest postseason drought.