Mariners News: Update on M’s GM Search
After serving as the Mariners Assistant General Manager to Jack Z, Jeff Kingston was hired as the M’s interim GM in August. Kingston originally worked under Theo Epstein in San Diego before joining Seattle in September of 2009.
Kingston decided to send Mike Zunino down to Tacoma on his first day on the job. Zunino dominated with the Rainiers, and it was assumed he would return to Seattle in early September. However, Kingston opted to sent the 24-year-old backstop to the Instructional League in Arizona to completely overhaul his swing.
Kingston has dipped his toes into the trade market as well, shipping a pair of veteran outfielders on August 31. His first move was trading Justin Ruggiano to the Los Angeles Dodgers for a player to be named later. Later in the day, Kingston sent Austin Jackson to the Chicago Cubs for future considerations and a player to be named later.
Typically, being the top advisor for the previous regime is a deficit, but this situation appears to be a little different. Kevin Mather is the Mariners President, and he was very slow to fire Zduriencik. Mather has also made it clear that he prefers to keep Lloyd McClendon as the manager in 2016. The M’s brass liked the majority of moves made by Zduriencik, and Kingston played a key role in many of those decisions. Also working in the 38-year-old’s favor is the fact that he is likely willing to keep McClendon as the M’s skipper next season.
Personally, I hope the Mariners do not hire Jeff Kingston to be the permanent General Manager. The Zduriencik era was not successful, and I would like to move on from the dysfunction.
Next: Dan O'Dowd