Regardless of ills at second base, Mariners need to let him learn in minors
Lets just slow down a bit.
The Mariners arent ready for Ackley, the second overall draft choice. Ackley isnt ready to be here.
They need to leave Ackley in the minor leagues and make fixes without involving him.
Ask the scouts. Well, since you cant, Ill ask for you. More than one has suggested that whatever was thought of the two Wilson errors Wednesday in Texas, youd see those and more with Ackley.
He is just a year removed from being a center fielder and first baseman. While it seems that hes enough of an athlete to make the conversion, his skills aren’t close to being as finely honed as a major league second baseman needs to be.
As with Wilson, he is still learning what a second baseman does and how he does it. The catch-and-release portion of his and Wilsons games while trying to turn the double play are works in progress.
The difference is the Mariners have Wilson on a short-term lease. His $5 million contract is up at the end of this season, and its unlikely hell be back. Whatever mistakes he makes will be short term.
On the other hand, if Ackley is close to the hitter scouts say he will be, he might play for the Mariners for a decade. They need him to be the best second baseman his defensive skills will allow. That means not coming to the big leagues now.
It behooves management to give Ackley all the school time he needs in Tacoma because, as Wilson is proving, its tough to learn at the big league level. For the moment, stick with Adam Kennedy or bring back Wilson, once he’s redeemed himself. Don’t even think about Ackley.
As for Wilson, he seems properly penitent after having taken himself out of Wednesdays game following errors on consecutive plays — a dropped throw and a wild throw — behind Felix Hernandez.
Club insiders say that Zduriencik is pleased by the way Wedge handled the situation. When Zduriencik went looking for a no-nonsense manager this off-season, this episode is what he had in mind someone who didnt mince words when he saw something he didnt like.
One incident doesnt change the culture. But it suggests that the culture is capable of being changed, and they have someone to change it. Thats not nothing.