Mariners Analysis

Tuesday, October 28, 2008

Bob Fontaine gone

Like many of you, I woke up this morning and read Larry Stone's article on Fontaine being dismissed.

My initial feeling.

Good news.

I know this goes against the grain, but hardcare fans have all agreed the only way the Mariners get back on the winning track is a complete overhaul. The Mariners are not one GM away from the playoffs. They need a fundamental process overhaul... they way players are scouted, trained, evaluated, drafted, managed.... you name it, they aren't doing it correctly.

So if Zduriencik is going to be successful, he needs people around him he trusts. He needs his support, so he's not the lone figure trying to steer the ship.

The counter argument to this is why Fontaine. Some feel Fontaine is one of the good guys, the few bright spots, the guys who should be retained and you replace all the other bums.

But is Fontaine that great?

I've never really seen it. Smarter people than me tell me his drafts are excellent. I have deferred to their opinion consistently, but looking back I more often then not have been critical.

Fields as a number one? Terrible idea. No idea who selected it, but I argued at the time this was a monumentally bad pick and Fontaine was in charge.

Morrow pick? He looks like a solid pick, but you can't ignore the team picked the oft-injured guy with upside over the local boy who is likely to win a Cy Young this season. Not to mention they passed on Miller. Not Fontaine's fault you say? So I guess everything is on Bavasi, or does Fontaine deserve any second guessing here?

Clement? Clear draft choice based on need, not best athlete.

We could go on.

If you look over the draft, while there are some misses he also found players like Lowe. So like every scout, he has some questionable picks and some great picks. So how do we weight them and decide if he was part of the solution or the problem? The answer to me is pretty clear. Fontaine has some impressive selections on his resume, but along the way he has some head scratchers as well. If the worst team in baseball selects a reliever in the first round, somethings wrong. And to argue Fontaine had nothing to do with it is difficult to believe.

I guess I'm ok with a few good guys getting shown the door if it fixes this team. If Fontaine is so good, he'll have little trouble finding work and our new GM is supposed to be a great talent evaluator.

I hope more changes are coming.