Who's the next manager of the Seattle Mariners in three or four seasons? Manny Acta?
For the second time in six years, the Mariners have dipped into the Cleveland discard pile to hire a skipper. Mike Hargrove in 2005, and Eric Wedge, according to several reports, on Friday.
Following a bitterly disappointing 2010 season, the Mariners could not have made a more uninspiring hire.
Last time anybody checked, the Indians weren't exactly overstocked with World Series-winning managers.
But it goes beyond what surely will be an avalanche of Cleveland jokes.
Wedge is a good teacher and a fine organizational person.
As a manager? His 2007 Indians team blew a 3-1 advantage to lose the ALCS to Boston, then they largely underachieved over the next two seasons. Which, much as he didn't want to, pretty much forced general manager Mark Shapiro's hand to fire him.
Wedge had his moments in Cleveland, but he never could get the Indians past that certain point. The roaring 93-65 season of 2005, when the Indians nearly overtook the White Sox in the AL Central, was followed with a crash-and-burn fourth-place finish in '06.
He comes across as uptight, and he's a zero as a personality. Which, is no small thing in today's game. The manager is the face of the organization. Hiring Bobby Valentine, now that would have given the Mariners personality.
Wedge just leaves them knee-deep in anonymity and, largely, irrelevant. And if they don't win, that will include in their own town.
(On another note, guess this means Milton Bradley does not fit into the Mariners' plans for 2011. The Indians were forced to trade him in 2004 after Wedge removed him from an exhibition game for not hustling and Bradley went ballistic. The volcanic explosion was spectacular, complete with Bradley dressing and leaving the ballpark during the game via cab ... even though his SUV was in the parking lot. He came back to retrieve it the next day).