Mariners News: M’s get their man, Jerry Dipoto named GM

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The Seattle Mariners announced on Monday afternoon that they have hired Jerry Dipoto to be the club’s executive vice-president and general manager. Dipoto’s name has been linked to the Mariners for weeks, and it appears they got their top target. The M’s will officially introduce Jerry Dipoto during a press conference on Tuesday in Seattle.

Mariners’ president Kevin Mather released a statement today introducing Jerry Dipoto to the media and the fans. “Jerry impressed us at each step of the process. He has a very unique skill set, having been a successful player in the Majors, then moving into front offices with steadily increasing responsibilities. Jerry has scouted, spent time in player development and has a track record as a very successful general manager.”

Dipoto spent 8 seasons as a relief pitcher in the big leagues with the Cleveland Indians, New York Mets and Colorado Rockies. He retired in 2000 after posting a record of 27-24 with a 4.05 ERA through 390 career appearances.

The Boston Red Sox hired Dipoto as a scout in 2003, and he helped shape the roster that broke the curse of the Bambino in 2004. Dipoto became the director of player personnel with the Colorado Rockies in 2005. He was plucked by Josh Byrnes to serve as the vice-president and director of player personnel with the Arizona Diamondbacks in 2006. It’s worth noting that the M’s took a long look at Dipoto before hiring Jack Zduriencik in 2009.

Greg Johns of MLB.com caught up with the Mariners’ new GM on Monday. “I’m honored to be joining the Mariners family,” Dipoto said. “As the 2015 season draws to a close, we have a great fan base, ballpark and organization, providing a great opportunity for success. I truly look forward to both the challenges and rewards to come as we chart a fresh course for the future of Mariners baseball.”

Dipoto arrives in Seattle after stepping down from the same role with the Los Angeles Angels earlier this season. The 47-year-old served as the Halos’ GM for three and a half years, before a quarrel with Mike Scioscia cost him his job.

The Halos tallied one postseason appearance and a pair of winning seasons under Dipoto’s watch. The highlight had to be when Anaheim posted a league best, 98 wins during the 2014 season.

Jerry Dipoto may not have departed the Angels on good terms, but he has a strong reputation throughout the league as an excellent talent evaluator. He is well versed in new age baseball stats, and is known for placing a high value on sabermetrics. After he left the Halos, the Red Sox hired him as a special consultant.

Personally, I am very happy the Mariners hired Jerry Dipoto to be the 9th GM in M’s history.

The Mariners have been awful this year, but they need to remain in “win now” mode this offseason. Led by veteran players like Robinson Cano, Felix Hernandez and Nelson Cruz, the M’s have a great opportunity to make the playoffs in the very near future. However, they need a general manager ready to step in and immediately address their weaknesses.

Jerry Dipoto is the perfect man to put the finishing touches on what could be a very successful team in 2016.

Dipoto consistently added impact players during his time with the Angels. He signed prominent free agents like Albert Pujols, C.J. Wilson, Josh Hamilton and Joe Smith. Some of those moves have backfired, but at least he had the guts to pull the trigger.

The Jersey City, NJ native also proved to be very adept at making trades during his tenure in Anaheim. Dipoto acquired big names like Zack Greinke, David Freese and Huston Street. He also traded for intriguing young players like Andrew Heaney, Tyler Skaggs and Hector Santiago.

Jerry knowns the American League West as well as anyone in baseball. He is well aware of the strengths and weaknesses of the Mariners’ competition. Dipoto also has numerous connections with GM’s around the league, and he will not need any time to adjust to his new position.

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Now that the M’s have hired a new GM, the next question becomes, what does the future hold for Lloyd McClendon? Mather and his cohorts are high on the Mariners’ skipper, but his handling of the team this season has been less than ideal. Based on what happened with Scioscia in Anaheim, you can bet Dipoto did not take the job in Seattle with McClendon guaranteed to remain the manager in 2016. This situation will be something to watch when firing season starts in early October.

As Mariners’ fans, we have had to put up with an inept front office for far too long. I truly believe Jerry Dipoto is the guy who will help the M’s make the postseason next year for the first time since 2001.

Next: M's Eliminated From Postseason Contention

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