BY Adam Lewis 10:48AM 11/06/2013

Mariners fan reaction: Not hot on McClendon

After the Mariners hired as manager Lloyd McClendon Tuesday, discontented fans went to Twitter to express their displeasure/apathy/sarcasm.

Lloyd McClendon will become Seattle’s seventh manager in six years. He most recently served as Detroit’s hitting coach.

Until the Mariners stop losing, most fans are going to meet every move made by the front office with derision, sarcasm and apathy, or some peculiar cocktail of all three.

That was made clear Tuesday in the hours after the club announced they hired Lloyd McClendon as their seventh manager in the last six seasons.

A quick perusal of Twitter revealed the depth of the cynicism. Some were skeptical (if not the best spellers) about McClendon’s job security under general manager Jack Zduriencik, whose contract is, at the moment, scheduled expire after the 2014 season.

After McClendon guided the Pirates to a 336-446 record during five unmemorable seasons (2001-05) in the NL East, the club fired him. The defining moment of McClendon’s managerial career came when he protested a call in a way unique to everyone except former Mariners manager Lou Piniella. 

Where did he take that base?

Ed Murray beat incumbent Seattle mayor Mike McGinn Tuesday night, knocking out of office Chris Hansen’s biggest proponent of the plan to build a basketball/hockey/entertainment arena south of Safeco Field.

Murray and McClendon face more than a few unenviable challenges. Who would be more difficult to deal with on a daily basis: The Seattle City Council or Howard Lincoln and Chuck Armstrong?

Are the Mariners already playing from behind?

Could first baseman Justin Smoak (.238 BA/.334 OBP/.412 SLG.) actually hit 30 home runs in one season if Seattle did this?

The Puget Sound Business Journal reported before any local or national news source that the Mariners had hired McClendon as the 19th manager in franchise history. To his credit, one clever fan saw a connection and pointed it out.

Lost in all this is the possibility that McClendon might actually do a decent job next season and lead the Mariners to a respectable finish in the AL West. Running out a starting rotation of Felix Hernandez, Hisashi Iwakuma and Taijuan Walker (and two among Erasmo Ramirez/Brandon Maurer/Danny Hultzen) should keep any team, even one with perpetual offensive incompetence, in most every ballgame.

But the Mariners are the Mariners for a reason — they haven’t made the playoffs since 2001 — so the skepticism persists.



  • jafabian

    McLendon is a good hire, there just isn’t much reason to get excited. His hire is a step backwards because this is a young, inexperienced club that was working with Eric Wedge and his staff in it’s growth. Now there’s a new man in charge who might say these aren’t the kind of players he wants on his club. The club has gone from year 2 back to year 1 of it’s rebuilding plan. And Mariner fans go through those 2x every decade. There’s no wow factor here, no excitement. More like “here we go again.”

    The lack of consistency shows a lack of pride, and if there’s no pride there won’t be consistent support. Sure, the spread sheet looks pretty but that means nothing to fans. They’ll just go across the street to watch the Sounders and if the M’s aren’t careful they’ll lose fans to Husky baseball as well.

    McLendon’s hire seems to say “we brought in a guy who knows hitting” and they’re going to invest in the current crop of young players. Well heard that when Adam Jones, Asdrubal Cabrera and Shin Soo Choo were here.

  • 1coolguy

    Until Howard and Chuck are gone it’s a non-event.
    McClendon apparently either didn’t do his homework on the M’s as to managers’ history or is just taking the gig for the bucks, as long as it lasts. He most likely figures if he can be around for 2 years he’s made big bucks and has lasted as long as can be expected as has planned as such.
    This is just A BIG YAWN

  • Effzee

    The buffoons in charge are doing nothing more than holding the entire franchise and fanbase hostage, maliciously, for their own greed and profit. There is no way they can’t be aware of their utter incompetence. Problem is, they don’t give a damn. They couldn’t possibly care less if the franchise has any sort of success on the field. I feel sorry for every person who took a job with the M’s thinking they were working for a legitimate sporting operation. This is a pathetic, wretched disorganization that has nothing whatsoever to do with the actual game of baseball. I love the term Mallpark that Theil coined yesterday. It’s perfect. This is nothing more than a profit scheme, and Chuckenhowie are simply the relentlessly cruel overlords laughing at us mere fans all the way to the bank.

  • Pickle

    Welcome Lloyd, make sure to put your paychecks in savings because Chuckenhowie will either drive you to quit or you will be fired shortly. I place the O/U at 23 months from today.

    • Tian Biao

      23 months sounds exactly right. Unless he gets in his truck and mysteriously drives away in mid season, like Hargrove. it seems the mere presence of chuckenhowie is enough to drive managers crazy.

      • RadioGuy

        Hey, Tian, your “Chuckenhowie” moniker for the two-headed hydra at the top of the M’s food chain (in America, anyway) seems to be gaining some traction. If we see bolts in their necks, you’ll KNOW you really hit home.

        We’ll all see how McClendon does, but I suspect he’ll first have to learn to live with people in the stands who are more interested in fake hydro races on a scoreboard that cost more than any of his players NOT named Felix than they are in his team. I think you need a Zen-like sense of detachment to manage in Seattle and not lose your cookies.

  • Will

    Fans not excited about McClendon? … I’m sure he’s a good guy and a decent coach but he’s decided to leave the normal baseball world for the M’s version of the Twilight Zone … A strange shadowy place in another dimension … where upper management talks to room’s full of mirrors while polishing their bobbleheads. Mr. McClendon has just landed in a place somewhere between sanity and madness … Soon, he’ll discover what lies in the pit of fan’s fears … Safeco Field, an imaginary land populated by quirky players with diverse medical conditions and trending downward batting averages … where big money happily hires inept, past their prime, free agents to bookend with one year wonders … Lloyd McCLendon doesn’t know it yet but the upcoming spring training will be the last time he ever smiles.

  • tedsfrozenhead

    Mariners fans, for the most part are just a bunch of whiners who look to see the worst of everything. I imagine that extends to the prism in which they view their lives as well. Blame Chuck & Howard all you want, they DO share in the blame and there is no denying that. But also blame yourselves…when you expect 1st year players to come up from the minor leagues and immediately perform like Hall Of Famers you are setting an unrealistic expectation and enabling your own disappointment. I hear people saying how our young players like Miller & Franklin are not going to make it and should be moved. Astute M’s fans make this evaluation after what, not even a full season? These same fans call for Ackleys head as well. Sure, he has had more time in the big leagues but fans forget the fact that he has been jerked around by GMZ since the day he signed. A 1B/OF in college, with skills that made him the #2 pick in the draft, he was forced to learn a new position and taken out of that comfort zone. Do the M’s fans understand that acclimation process or that it might have weighed on his confidence? No….”he’s a bust” is as deep as their intellect goes. These same fans will be the first ones crying if these players become all-stars for another team once they find their groove. Now, players like Guti needed to go, great guy but if they can’t get it done it’s time to cut the cord. Saunders should be out the door too. Smoak, in my opinion has this one last year to show he can play good ball for an entire season and not just September. If not, get him out of here.
    There is another train of thought for M’s fans, and it is the road less traveled by them. The ownership is not afraid to spend. They did try to land Hamilton and Fielder, and their prudence at not throwing the whole budget at Hamilton proved to be a great move. This same ownership also was responsible for hiring the leaders who made this team one of the most exciting in baseball for a number of years. GMZ might be a bigger problem than Chuck & Howard, his attemted trade for Upton would have been a huge mistake and his handling of managers is simply terrible. I am afraid that he will sell out the youth of this team to save his job. In that respect he is a very dangerous man.
    If M’s fans were realistic and sought to see a positive potential for the Mariners they might see that there are a number of young players on this team who have gotten their feet wet in the big leagues, have possibly acclimated to where we will see their potential realized and not just projected and have average or above years in 2014. If Ackley, Miller, Franklin and Smoak can pull it together, paired with a couple shrewd acquisitions by GMZ this team can surprise the baseball world.

    It’s all a matter of perception. That most M’s fans seek to see the worst is all on them and they deserve their misery. Frankly, I am sick of the boo-hoo-hoo mentality and dislike that more than what I see on the field.

    • Effzee

      Really? Copy and paste the same long-winded drivel in two separate threads? Come on, man. At least have some creativity with your ill-placed conviction.This is even lazier than Chuckenhowie.

      • tedsfrozenhead

        Effzee, there is always room for intellectual and respectful dialogue among respectful and intellectual people.

        As for cut and pasting of my thoughts…so what. They are applicable in whatever location I place them.

        Cheers to you

  • maqman

    If Jim Leyland had confidence in him I don’t have a problem doing the same thing.