Zduriencik gets multiyear extension as GM
Jack Zduriencik, whose Mariners are contending for their first postseason berth since 2001, has received a multiyear contract extension as executive vice president and general manager, the club announced on Tuesday.
Zduriencik is in his sixth season as GM, and the Mariners enter Tuesday’s game against the Rangers with a record of 71-59, having already equaled last year’s win total with 32 games remaining. Exact terms of the extension were not disclosed.
“Since Jack took over after the 2008 season, we have been building toward our ultimate goal, which is to win the World Series,” said Mariners president Kevin Mather. “We believe, with the efforts of Jack and his staff, we are now well positioned as an organization to be a contender for many years to come.”
Lloyd McClendon, hired by Zduriencik last offseason to replace Eric Wedge as field manager, said he’s been thrilled by the working relationship that has quickly developed.
“I think it’s well deserved,” McClendon said of the extension. “Jack has done a tremendous job of putting this club together and making the necessary acquisitions to make us better. I just think he’s done a tremendous job all around, starting with Spring Training, and getting the pieces that we needed to be competitive. Hopefully this continues to build.”
Zduriencik has been in Major League Baseball for 35 years, previously working with the Mets, Dodgers, Pirates and Brewers before joining Seattle prior to the 2009 campaign.
Zduriencik is the eighth GM in Mariners history and is credited with helping rebuild the club’s farm system and developing a young core that is now maturing at the Major League level.
McClendon said the club’s Minor League system is one of the best in baseball, something he knew before he even took his job last winter.
“I didn’t need to be here to know what they’ve got,” McClendon said. “This is one of the finest farm systems in all of baseball. I don’t think you’ll find anybody that would tell you different. We’re tremendously talented in the middle of the field, we’ve got some tremendous arms in the Minor Leagues and certainly some real nice bats at the lower levels. I’m excited about what the future holds for this club. I said it in my initial press conference, this is a golden era for the Seattle Mariners and it’s only going to get better.”
When Wedge resigned last year after failing to get a desired multiyear extension prior to the end of a 71-91 season, he blasted Zduriencik in a newspaper report and called the organization “dysfunctional,” a point McClendon wryly made light of on Tuesday.
“We talk every day on a lot of different subjects,” he said of working with Zduriencik. “We’re probably as dysfunctional as dysfunctional can get. It’s a pretty good relationship.
“Seriously, and this is a real important point, when you talk about dealing with someone on a daily basis, the one thing you have to understand is the first thing you need to do is agree that sometimes you’re going to disagree, to make your organization better. It’s not always about ‘I love you’ and ‘You love me.’
“There are some days when he leaves this office with a bandage over his head and other days I leave the office with a bandage over my head,” McClendon said. “But our relationship is one of mutual respect. I think he’s tremendous at what he does and I hope he’s proud of the job I’ve done for him. It’s pretty good.”