Seattle Mariners

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Posted by kaori 04/17/2009 @ 22:10

Tags : seattle mariners, mlb, baseball, sports

News headlines
Los Angeles vs. Seattle - USA Today
(Sports Network) - Coming off his worst performance of the season, Los Angeles Angels of Anaheim pitcher Joe Saunders will be aiming to bounce back tonight against the Seattle Mariners, a team he's enjoyed plenty of success against over the years....
Mariners bench slumping Beltre - The Associated Press
SEATTLE (AP) — The Seattle Mariners decided to give slumping slugger Adrian Beltre a day off. Manager Don Wakamatsu had Beltre out of the lineup for the first time this season Monday night when Seattle opened a three-game series against the Los Angeles...
Angels' Lackey struggles but beats Mariners 10-6 - The Associated Press
SEATTLE (AP) — Torii Hunter hit a three-run double in a five-run fifth inning and Kendry Morales homered twice, rallying John Lackey and the Los Angeles Angels to a 10-6 victory over the Seattle Mariners on Monday night. Lackey won in his second start...
Carlos Silva's Shoulder Troubles Won't Set Back the Seattle Mariners - Bleacher Report
Unfortunately, he will just keep disappointing Mariners fans. First, a terrible record, and now an injury. What was the point of signing him to four years and $48 million? I definitely don't know. Nobody knows except former GM Bill Bavasi....
Farm Report: 1B Mike Carp, Seattle Mariners - Bleacher Report
by Lars Hanson (Scribe) Mike Carp, who's not among the top 10 prospects in the Mariners organization according to baseball america.com. How ever talent wise Carp is among the top ten prospects in the Mariners organization. Carp was acquired in that...
Mariners get a walk-off win, take two of three from Red Sox - IdahoStatesman.com
SEATTLE – It was on a similar sun-drenched Sunday at Safeco Field just two weeks ago that the Seattle Mariners won a dramatic 15-inning game with a walk-off hit by Jose Lopez. In the two weeks and 12 games that followed, the Mariners went on a woeful...
Seattle Mariners' Monkey Business - ConnieTalk
The Seattle Mariners Major League baseball team has been airing a commercial called "The Secret" featuring a chimpanzee. While chimps look really cute smiling and performing antics, the sad news is that in order to learn these feats they are taken from...
Brad Nelson Signs Minor League Contract With Seattle Mariners - Bleacher Report
Well, because the Seattle Mariners front office picked up Brad Nelson pretty quickly. You might be thinking that we do not need any more first base (or yikes…outfield?) “prospects” sitting in AAA. Chris Shelton, Brian LeHair, Mike Carp,...
Brandon Morrow out as Seattle Mariners closer for time being - Seattle Times
Just got up from the field, where Mariners manager Don Wakamatsu confirmed that Brandon Morrow is no longer the closer. Morrow moves to a middle relief role until he can find command of his pitches. For now, a committee of arms will be used,...
Rangers deep-six Mariners in 7th - Seattle Times
The Mariners have now scored one or zero runs in 10 games this season, and two runs in four others. By Larry Stone TONY GUTIERREZ / AP Seattle Mariners starting pitcher Jason Vargas looks at the ball between batters in the third inning of a baseball...

Seattle Mariners

Seattle Mariners logo.svg

The Seattle Mariners are an American professional baseball team based in Seattle, Washington. Enfranchised in 1977, the Mariners are a member of the Western Division of Major League Baseball's American League. Safeco Field has been the Mariners' home ballpark since July 1999; from their 1977 inception until June 1999, the club's home park was the Kingdome.

The "Mariners" name originates from the prominence of marine culture in the city of Seattle. They are nicknamed "the M's", a title featured in their primary logo from 1987 to 1992. The current team colors are navy blue, teal, and metallic silver, after having been royal blue and gold from 1977–1992. Their mascot is the Mariner Moose.

The organization did not field a winning team until 1991, and any real success eluded them until 1995 when they won their first division championship and defeated the New York Yankees in the American League Division Series. The game-winning hit in Game 5 clinched a series win for the Mariners, and has since become an iconic moment in team history. The Mariners share the record for most wins in a single season with 116, which they achieved in 2001. Despite their successes since winning their first division title in 1995, they have never won an AL Pennant championship and remain one of three franchises (the others being the Washington Senators/Texas Rangers and the Montreal Expos/Washington Nationals) never to have played in a World Series.

Before being awarded a team in Major League Baseball, Seattle had been a staple of the Pacific Coast League dating back to the late 19th century. The first attempt to land a major league team failed when a bid by William Daley to move the Cleveland Indians to Seattle in 1965 fell apart. In late 1967, Daley, by then having sold the Indians, led a consortium to win a franchise in the 1969 expansion. That team became the Seattle Pilots. The Seattle Pilots, amidst a bevy of financial problems, were sold and relocated to Milwaukee for the 1970 season and became the Milwaukee Brewers.

The Mariners were created as a result of a lawsuit. In 1970, in the aftermath of the Pilots' purchase and relocation to Milwaukee by future Commissioner of Baseball Bud Selig, the City of Seattle, King County, and the state of Washington (represented by then-State Attorney General Slade Gorton) sued the American League for breach of contract. Confident that Major League Baseball would return to Seattle within a few years, King County built the multi-purpose Kingdome, which would become home to the NFL's expansion Seattle Seahawks in 1976.

The Pilots lawsuit continued until 1976. At trial, the American League offered to give Seattle an expansion baseball franchise in return for dropping the suit, and details were ironed out over the next year. To keep the league with an even number of teams, a formal expansion proceeding was held, with a second team, the Blue Jays, being awarded to the city of Toronto. The new Seattle team, to begin play in 1977, would be owned by entertainer Danny Kaye, along with Stanley Golub, Walter Schoenfeld, Lester Smith, James Stillwell Jr. and James A Walsh.

The Mariners played their first game on April 6, 1977 to a sold-out crowd of 57,762 at the Kingdome, losing 7-0 to the California Angels. That year, star pitcher Diego Segui, in his last major league season, became the only player to play for both the Pilots and the Mariners. The Mariners finished with a 64–98 record, echoing the record the 1969 Pilots once held. In 1979, Seattle hosted the 50th Major League Baseball All-Star Game; Mariner Bruce Bochte had the game-winning hit for the American League in front of a sold-out Kingdome crowd. After the 1981 season, the Mariners were sold to California businessman and future U.S. Ambassador to Spain George Argyros.

Despite having stars such as Hall of Fame pitcher Gaylord Perry (nicknamed the "Ancient Mariner"), 1984 American League Rookie of the Year Alvin Davis, two-time All-Star and three-time Gold Glove winner Harold Reynolds, three-time American League strikeout leader Mark Langston, and shortstop and team captain Spike Owen on their rosters, the Mariners teams of the late 1970s and the entirety of the 1980s were characterized by perennial non-achievement, gaining a reputation for poor performances, low attendance, and losing records. Moreover, the team's ownership again changed hands after the 1988 season, as Argyros sold the club to a group headed by communications magnate Jeff Smulyan. However, the 1989 rookie season of center fielder Ken Griffey, Jr., acquired with the first pick in the first round of the 1987 amateur draft, gave fans hope that a change of fortunes might be on the horizon. The Mariners finished with a losing record in 1990 to start off the decade.

The first home run in team history was hit on April 10, 1977, by designated hitter Juan Bernhardt.

After yet another dismal performance in 1990, the Mariners managed their first winning season in 1991, finishing 83–79 under manager Jim Lefebvre. Though it was the team's best season up to that point, it was only good enough for a fifth-place finish in the seven-team American League West in which no team finished under .500, and Lefebvre was fired after 1991. The team hired Bill Plummer as Lefebvre's replacement for the 1992 season, but he too was let go after a 98-loss campaign in 1992.

After several years of relocation threats by owner Jeff Smulyan, in the middle of the 1992 season the Mariners were purchased by a group of Seattle-area businessmen, led by Nintendo chairman Hiroshi Yamauchi. The purchase was initially opposed by baseball officials, who objected to a team being owned by a non-North American entity. Eventually, they allowed the sale, provided that the team's presidency and chairmanship remained in the hands of American partners.

In 1993, the Mariners donned their current uniforms probably as a result of new ownership. During the 1992-93 offseason, the Mariners hired manager Lou Piniella, who had led the Cincinnati Reds to victory in the 1990 World Series. Mariner fans embraced Piniella, and he would helm the team from 1993 through 2002, winning two American League Manager of the Year Awards along the way.

The Mariners' fortunes began to improve in 1994. Beginning in the late 1980s, the team had added a core of strong players built around center fielder Ken Griffey, Jr., pitcher Randy Johnson, third baseman Edgar Martínez, and right fielder Jay Buhner. On July 19, 1994, four 15-pound ceiling tiles fell from the Kingdome roof onto the field and into the stadium's seating bowl. The incident led to uncertainty over whether the Kingdome was fit for use as a major league stadium, and may well have ultimately been a factor leading to the construction of Safeco Field. Unable to play at the venue while repairs were being executed, the Major League Baseball Players' Association rejected the idea of playing games at Cheney Stadium in Tacoma or BC Place in Vancouver, feeling that games should not be played in non-MLB venues. This forced the Mariners to play their next 20 games on the road over the span of 21 days. The long trip began miserably as the Mariners started off 2–8, but rebounded to win nine of their next ten games, leaving them just 2 games behind the division-leading Texas Rangers when a players' strike was called on August 12 that resulted in the cancellation the rest of the season. Many players felt the time together on the road and the overcoming of the adversity faced that season fed directly into the success the team would achieve in the 1995 season. The extended roadtrip resulted in a peculiarity, in which the first game in a series with the Boston Red Sox - which was supposed to be in Seattle - was rained out; if one still counts this as a home game, it would mark the first - and so far only - home rainout in Mariners history.

Although pitchers Randy Johnson, Bill Risley, and Bobby Ayala combined for an opening-day three-hit shutout, the Mariners' 1995 season started off on a bad note overall, as Griffey sustained a major early-season injury. Despite this loss, the Mariners continued to play fairly well, guided by Piniella. In mid-August, however, the Mariners appeared to be out of contention, 13 games behind the first-place California Angels.

The tide turned with a September winning streak marked by late-inning comeback wins, which led to their most-known slogan "Refuse to Lose." Combined with an absolute collapse by the Angels, this opened the way for the Mariners to end up tied with the Angels for first place at the end of the regular season, forcing a one-game playoff. The playoff pitted Johnson against Angels ace Mark Langston, whom, incidentally, the Mariners had traded for Johnson in 1989. Langston ended up on the seat of his pants at homeplate failing to tag out Luis Sojo who came all the way around after clearing the bases with a ball that got by the Angels first baseman, J. T. Snow, rattled around underneath California's bullpen bench, and resulted in a hurried and errant cut-off throw from Langston. The Mariners won the tiebreaker game 9-1 and clinched their first-ever trip to the playoffs. The Mariners had won 25 of their last 36 games.

The Mariners lost the first two games of the 1995 American League Division Series against the New York Yankees, but managed to win the next two at home and force a decisive Game 5. Down 5-4 in the bottom of the 11th inning, the most memorable moment in Mariners history took place. Edgar Martínez hit a game-winning double off Yankee ace Jack McDowell, scoring Joey Cora and Griffey to win the game 6-5 and advance to the American League Championship Series. "The Double", as Martinez's clutch hit has since been called by Mariners fans, is credited as being "the moment that saved baseball in Seattle" by generating newly refreshed interest in the team and making a new, baseball-only stadium possible.

Although the Mariners' championship run was halted in the ALCS by another up-and-coming club, Mike Hargrove's Cleveland Indians, who won the series 4 games to 2, 1995 is remembered as "The Magical Season" and "The Miracle Mariners of 1995" with "The Double" still considered by many the greatest moment in Mariners history.

In 1996, the Mariners, led by Griffey, rookie shortstop Alex Rodriguez, and sluggers Jay Buhner and Edgar Martínez, won a then-team record 85 games, but missed the playoffs. The offense set the all-time record for most home runs by a team in a season, but ultimately the Mariners' inconsistent pitching, exacerbated by a midseason injury to Randy Johnson, doomed the team.

The Mariners won a division title again in 1997, but were defeated in the 1997 American League Division Series 3 games to 1 by the Baltimore Orioles. They were again hurt by a lack of pitching depth to complement the strong offense, which was led by Griffey, who won the MVP award, a first for both him and the Mariners.

In 1998 and 1999, the Mariners had losing records due primarily to their lack of pitching depth. Randy Johnson was traded at the 1998 July non-waiver trading deadline to the Houston Astros after GM Woody Woodard publicly stated he did not intend on offering Johnson (who was a free agent following the 1998 season) a long-term contract. Johnson subsequently requested to be traded. He had been inconsistent during the first half of the season; some fans and press thought he had been trying to force a trade through malaise. Strong pitching from aces Jeff Fassero and Jamie Moyer was not enough to fully offset the loss, and the bullpen's struggles continued. Midway through the 1999 season, the Mariners moved to SAFECO Field. After the 1999 season, Ken Griffey, Jr. requested and attained a trade to the Cincinnati Reds, leaving Alex Rodriguez as the face of the franchise at the beginning of the high-expectation Safeco Field era, which was during the years 2000-03.

2000 was a return to respectability for the Mariners. They finished half a game behind Oakland Athletics in the AL West, as they played only 161 games. The tiebreaking rules had already awarded the division crown to Oakland, so the rained out 162nd game was not made up, and the Mariners were declared wild card winners. While Ken Griffey, Jr. was no longer patrolling center or anchoring the middle of the batting order, his replacement, Mike Cameron, was noted for his solid hitting and exceptional glovework (he would go on to win two Gold Gloves with the team). Alex Rodriguez replaced Junior as the face of the franchise in 2000. Edgar Martínez continued his steady hitting in the cleanup spot, putting up a career high in homers. Both finished in the top six in MVP voting. A key addition to the team occurred when the Mariners signed the one-time AL Batting Champion John Olerud, a Washington State University graduate, to play first base. Olerud would enjoy some of his best seasons in Seattle, and played a huge part in the team's success the following year. Jamie Moyer, Freddy Garcia, and Aaron Sele anchored what was easily the most successful rotation in Seattle since the departure of Randy Johnson. Closer Kazuhiro Sasaki, previously a star for the Japanese Yokohama BayStars, won the AL Rookie of the Year award. Stolen base king and former MVP Rickey Henderson was acquired midseason and filled longtime needs in left field and in the leadoff slot. The Mariners swept the Chicago White Sox in the ALDS, but lost to the New York Yankees in six games in the ALCS.

The following offseason was one of the most significant in Mariners history, as Rodríguez was up for free agency. Ultimately, Rodríguez was lost to the Texas Rangers for what was then the richest contract ever in professional sports. However, the Mariners were able to weather the loss by adding Japanese superstar Ichiro Suzuki and slick fielding, power hitting second base veteran Bret Boone.

In 2001, the addition of Ichiro and a career season by Boone helped the Mariners to tie the record for most wins in the modern era. This was despite the loss of A-Rod, who would be greeted on his return to Safeco with Monopoly money dropped by unusually irate Seattle fans, and on subsequent returns by incessant booing. The 2001 Mariners led the major leagues in winning percentage all season long, easily winning the American League West division championship, breaking the 1998 Yankees American League single-season record of 114 wins, and matching the Major League Baseball record for single-season wins of 116 set by the Chicago Cubs in 1906. At the end of the season, Ichiro won the AL MVP, AL Rookie of the Year, and one of three outfield Gold Glove Awards, becoming the first player since the 1975 Boston Red Sox's Fred Lynn to win all three in the same season. He also became the charismatic, if enigmatic, face of the team. He has been the subject of several books (including one released in the summer of 2001 that consists solely of his zen-like quotations).

The Mariners pulled off a come-from-behind 3-2 series win over the Cleveland Indians in the Division Series to advance to the American League Championship Series to have a rematch with the New York Yankees, but once again succumbed to the Yankees for the second year in a row in the ALCS, 4 games to 1. The Mariners also hosted the All-Star Game that year, and had a league-leading and team record eight All-Stars: RF Ichiro Suzuki, DH Edgar Martínez, CF Mike Cameron, 2B Bret Boone, 1B John Olerud, and pitchers Freddy Garcia, Kazuhiro Sasaki, and Jeff Nelson.

The Mariners started the 2002 season hot (they were on pace to win 100+ games again well into the summer), but they missed out on the playoffs. This was widely attributed to their failure to find a substantial contributor at the trade deadline and hot streaks by the Anaheim Angels and Oakland Athletics in the later months of the season. Ultimately, the Angels won the World Series as the Mariners won 93 games, which was still the second best total in their history. At the end of the season, manager Lou Piniella left the Mariners to manage his hometown Tampa Bay Devil Rays, reportedly due to his anger with management; Piniella believed that management was more concerned with the bottom line than acquiring quality players.

The Mariners signed Bob Melvin to be their new manager. The local press speculated that a first year manager (especially someone more even-tempered than the fiery Piniella) would be easier for the front office and ownership to control.

The Mariners again got off to an excellent start in the 2003 season. They contended all season long and reached the same record as in 2002, but were again beaten to the playoffs by their division rival Oakland Athletics, highlighted by a six-game losing streak in late August that saw their lead evaporate, which they would never recover. Their failure to make the playoffs was again blamed on management's inability to bring in a bat at the trading deadline and the aging roster's decline. Notably, the debate was started by pitcher Jeff Nelson, who was himself traded after criticizing the front office's deadline inactivity. General manager Pat Gillick became a consultant midway through the offseason to make room for new GM Bill Bavasi.

With the exception of the 1998 and 1999 seasons, the Mariners had been annual challengers for the AL West title from 1995 through 2003. The 2004 season, however, saw the fall of the Mariners from contention. With an aging roster, the Mariners went into the All-Star Break with a 9-game losing streak, and a 32-54 season record (.372) 17 games behind the first-place Texas Rangers. After the All-Star break, unable to ignore the dreadful state of their team, the Mariners gave the team a complete overhaul, trading Freddy García to the Chicago White Sox for Miguel Olivo, Jeremy Reed, and Mike Morse and moving aging and struggling players away from center stage (most notably, releasing Gold Glover and fan favorite John Olerud) and inserting over a dozen minor league call-ups into the 25-man roster. The season's end was enlivened by Ichiro breaking George Sisler's single season record of 257 hits (finishing with 262) and by events honoring the retirement of Mariner icon Edgar Martínez. Just days after the end of the season, the Mariners fired manager Bob Melvin. On October 20, 2004, the Mariners announced the signing of Mike Hargrove, who had led the Cleveland Indians past the Mariners in the 1995 ALCS, as their new manager. In the offseason, the Mariners and Bavasi surprised fans and the local press by signing two premier free agents, third baseman Adrián Beltré and first baseman Richie Sexson, ending some accusations from fans that the organization was only willing to make piecemeal signings and trades.

On November 26, 2004, the owner of the Mariners changed: Hiroshi Yamauchi sold his 54 % stake to Nintendo of America.

Despite several personnel changes and free-agent signings after the 2004 season, the team stayed at the bottom of the divisional standings throughout the 2005 season and finished in last place, though they improved their record by six games compared to the previous year. The brightest spot of the season was the emergence of 19-year-old Venezuelan pitching prospect Félix Hernández, who became the youngest major leaguer to debut since Jose Rijo entered the league with the New York Yankees in 1984. Sexson also played very well, hitting 39 home runs and 121 RBI. Stars Ichiro and Beltre, however, did not reach their high levels of offensive production from 2004, and 2B Bret Boone was released before the All-Star break. Along with Hernandez, two rookie middle infielders became part of the Mariners' long term plans: Cuban defector and shortstop Yuniesky Betancourt and Venezuelan second baseman and former top prospect José López became the next season's starters. However, the Mariners' rotation beyond Hernandez and the aging Jamie Moyer was poor, and the Mariners suffered the embarrassment of having the most suspendees under MLB's new drug testing policy, notably pitcher Ryan Franklin and IF/OF Mike Morse. During the 2005–2006 off-season, Ichiro spoke out and criticized the team's attitude, pointing out its lack of leadership and manager Hargrove's failure to harness players.

The Mariners began the 2005–2006 off-season by signing star Japanese catcher Kenji Johjima to a 3-year deal and left-handed starter Jarrod Washburn (formerly of division rival Los Angeles) to a 4-year deal. Designated hitter Carl Everett and outfielder Matt Lawton also joined the team, although both would finish the season out of baseball. The Mariners entered the All-Star Break 2.5 games out of first place in the AL West with a 43-46 record. Despite remaining in contention within the AL West through July, a disastrous 0-11 road trip in mid-August signaled the end of the Mariners' playoff hopes, leaving them in last place, where they would finish the season. Pitcher Jamie Moyer was traded to the Philadelphia Phillies for a pair of minor league prospects, and weeks later bench coach Ron Hassey and administrative coach Dan Rohn—whom many viewed as a prime candidate to replace Hargrove as manager—were removed from their positions with the team. At season's end, the Mariners had only narrowly avoided losing 90 games for the third consecutive year. While the team entered the 2006–2007 off-season with some young talent in key positions, many questions remained as to the consistency of their offense and, more importantly, the strength of their starting pitching staff.

The 2007 season began with a sense of muted optimism. While the team had a busy off-season in terms of changes to the roster, fans questioned player transactions that moved young, potential-filled players (Rafael Soriano, Chris Snelling) in favor of veterans who have suffered injuries in recent seasons (José Guillén, José Vidro, Horacio Ramírez) or who have achieved mediocre success in the past with other clubs (Miguel Batista, Jeff Weaver). These transactions followed CEO Howard Lincoln's remarks at the completion of the 2006 campaign that GM Bill Bavasi and manager Mike Hargrove were on his "hot seat" and needed to produce more wins in 2007. Further magnifying the need to win was outfielder Ichiro Suzuki's suggestion at the beginning of spring training that he may have an interest in testing free-agency waters when his contract is completed at the end of the season if the Mariners continue to struggle on the field.

After two and a half seasons with the Mariners and while guiding the team to a 44–33 record in the 2007 season, Mike Hargrove unexpectedly announced before the July 1, 2007 game against the Toronto Blue Jays that the game would be his last as the Mariners' manager. Hargrove said that he could no longer provide the commitment from himself that he was expecting of his players and coaches. Bench coach John McLaren was announced as Hargrove's replacement. On July 13, Ichiro Suzuki signed a 5-year, 90-million-dollar contract with the Mariners that will extend to 2012. With minor league prospect Adam Jones playing well and a fairly consistent offense and pitching staff, the 2007 Mariners were back in contention in the AL West and AL Wild Card races. However, a 3–15 stretch late in the season effectively ended the Mariners' 2007 playoff hopes. The Mariners were mathematically eliminated from contention on September 24. One highlight during this stretch, however, was the home run that gave Ichiro Suzuki 200 hits for his seventh consecutive 200-hit season; Ichiro is only the third player in MLB history with seven consecutive 200-hit seasons, and the first to do it in his first seven seasons.

Heading into the 2008 season, the Mariners hoped to capitalize on their 2007 success by bolstering their roster to position themselves to once again challenge the Angels for the AL West championship. They dramatically transformed their pitching staff, adding free agent Carlos Silva and trading a package of players led by George Sherrill and Adam Jones to the Baltimore Orioles on February 8 for Erik Bedard. Other additions included outfielder Brad Wilkerson and infielder Miguel Cairo, as well as a new coaching staff under McLaren featuring former MLB managers Jim Riggleman, Sam Perlozzo, Lee Elia, and pitching coach Mel Stottlemyre. Also added to the major league coaching staff was bullpen coach Norm Charlton, a member of the 1995, 1997, and 2001 AL West title teams, as well as Eddie Rodriguez, previously manager of the Mariners' Class AA minor league affiliate. Hitting coach Jeff Pentland remained as the only coach hired under Hargrove.

Despite their offseason additions, the 2008 Mariners featured one of the league's worst offenses. In April, the club attempted to solve some of its offensive woes by designating Wilkerson and pinch hitter Greg Norton for assignment. The offensive struggles, in concert with defensive lapses and inconsistent pitching from both the bullpen and the starting rotation, led the team to last place by the end of April despite an Opening Day payroll of nearly $117 million. On June 8, the Mariners held the worst record in baseball with a .349 winning percentage, and were on pace for 105 losses and the worst record in team history. Hitting coach Pentland was fired on June 9 and was replaced by Lee Elia, who was previously the Mariners' hitting instructor from 1993-1997. Following a 1–5 homestand, general manager Bill Bavasi was dismissed on June 16 and replaced by Lee Pelekoudas on an interim basis. Pelekoudas has held various front office positions with the Mariners since 1980, most recently as vice president/assistant general manager. The purge continued on June 19, when John McLaren was dismissed from his position and replaced by bench coach Jim Riggleman. Personnel moves of that sort were not limited to coaches and front office personnel in 2008, as Richie Sexson and Jose Vidro were released in July and August, respectively. On September 1st, the Mariners were the first team in baseball mathematically eliminated from the playoffs. They finished the season with 101 losses, only one fewer than the MLB-worst Washington Nationals.

2008 did have a handful of noteworthy achievements, however: On June 23, pitcher Félix Hernández hit a grand slam off of the New York Mets' Johan Santana, becoming the first pitcher in franchise history to hit a home run, as well as the first AL pitcher to hit a grand slam since 1971 (and the first ever in modern Interleague play). On September 1, third baseman Adrián Beltré became the fourth Mariner to hit for the cycle. Beltré's cycle came hours after Stephen Drew of the Arizona Diamondbacks hit for the cycle, marking the second time in MLB history – and the first since 1920 – that two players accomplished the feat on the same day. On September 17, Ichiro tied Willie Keeler's record of 8 consecutive 200-hit seasons, matching a mark that has stood since 1901.

On October 22, the Mariners announced the hiring of Jack Zduriencik, formerly scouting director of the Milwaukee Brewers, as their general manager. On November 18, the team named Oakland Athletics bench coach Don Wakamatsu as its new field manager. Zduriencik immediately got to work adjusting the roster, including orchestrating a 12-player trade that sent fan favorite closer J.J. Putz to the New York Mets but netted prospect Mike Carp, outfielders Endy Chavez from New York and Franklin Gutierrez from the Cleveland Indians. Wakamatsu, meanwhile, dismissed the entire coaching staff that had worked under McLaren/Riggleman and replaced them with an entirely new staff.

In January 2009 the Mariners unveiled their new slogan, "A New Day, A New Way", to help promote the team's new rebuilding philosophy.

On February 18, 2009, the Mariners signed former team member and fan favorite Ken Griffey Jr. to a one-year deal worth $2 million plus up to a additional $4 million based on incentives.

The score of the first game, played at the Metrodome in Minneapolis, was 6-1, with the Mariners defeating the Minnesota Twins. Ken Griffey Jr. hit a home run en route to the victory.

During game 2 of the Mariner's home opening series, Ken Griffey, Jr. hit a solo home run to become the first player in MLB history to have recorded 400 home runs with one team and 200 home runs with another. Ichiro also returned from the 15-day DL and hit a grand slam in the 11-3 victory over the Los Angeles Angels.

The team mainly plays spring training games in the Peoria Sports Complex in Peoria, Arizona. They share the complex and stadium with the San Diego Padres.

This is a partial list listing the past ten completed regular seasons. For the full season records, see here.

First team of 2008 to officially be eliminated from the 2008 playoffs. Worst record since 1983, which was the last time they had lost over 100 games in a season.

First team in MLB history to lose 100 games with a $100 million payroll.

The following inducted members of the Baseball Hall of Fame spent part of their careers with the Mariners. None are depicted on their plaques wearing a Mariners cap insignia.

Additionally, in 2008, longtime Mariners broadcaster Dave Niehaus was honored with the Hall of Fame's Ford C. Frick Award. Though not officially considered an inducted member of the Hall of Fame, Niehaus was honored in the Hall of Fame induction ceremony and is permanently recognized in the Hall's "Scribes & Mikemen" exhibit.

The Seattle Mariners have not retired any uniform numbers. Official team policy states that number retirement is reserved for players in the National Baseball Hall of Fame who played for at least five years with the Mariners, or career Mariners players who narrowly miss election.

Despite not officially retiring any numbers, the team has not reissued the numbers 11 (Edgar Martínez), 14 (Lou Piniella), or 19 (Jay Buhner) to any uniformed staff since the last player to have worn the number left the team. Number 51, worn by Randy Johnson, was withheld from players from 1998 until 2001, when it was awarded to Ichiro Suzuki upon his request after wearing it for his entire career in Japan. 24 was not issued from the time Ken Griffey, Jr. left the team after the 1999 season until it was re-issued to him when he returned in 2009.

Number 00 is presumed off-limits, as it has been worn by the Mariner Moose since 1997 (outfielder Jeffrey Leonard was the last player to don 00 for the M's, in 1990). From 1990–1996, the Moose wore the last 2 digits of the year of the current season.

Jackie Robinson's number, 42, was retired throughout Major League Baseball on April 15, 1997.

In 2009, KIRO-AM 710 (ESPN Radio) returns to carrying Mariners contests after an absence of six seasons where games had been on KOMO 1000 AM, as they had carried Mariners contests and related programming from 1985 until 2002 beforehand. From the teams' founding from 1977 until 1984, the Mariners were broadcast on KVI 570 AM.

Television rights are held by FSN Northwest. In years past, Mariners games have also appeared in Seattle on over-the-air networks flagshipped by KING-TV, KIRO-TV, KTZZ-TV, and KSTW-TV as well as Prime Sports Northwest (the precursor to FSN Northwest).

Some Mariners games are also available on Canadian television, due to an agreement between FSN Northwest and Rogers Sportsnet. Selected games on FSN Northwest are simulcast on Rogers Sportsnet Pacific, which is the Rogers Sportsnet feed available to viewers in the network's Pacific region (i.e., British Columbia and the Yukon). Digital cable and satellite TV subscribers receive all four Rogers Sportsnet regional feeds, meaning that they are also able to view the games, regardless of their region of residence.

The Mariners broadcast team currently features Dave Niehaus and Rick Rizzs- back for their 32nd and 23rd seasons with the club, respectively- as well as veteran broadcaster Dave Sims and former infielder Mike Blowers. For the first three innings of each game, Niehaus works the television broadcast with Blowers, and Rizzs and Sims handle radio duties; after the third inning, Niehaus and Sims trade places. Former catcher Dave Valle continues to co-host the post-game show on the Mariners' radio network.

Spanish-language radio broadcast duties are handled by Alex Rivera on play-by-play and former second baseman Julio Cruz.

Tom Hutyler is the Mariners' public address announcer, and has worked in that capacity since 1987.

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List of Seattle Mariners managers

Mike Hargrove, the manager of the Mariners from 2005–2007

There have been 16 managers in the history of the Seattle Mariners Major League Baseball (MLB) franchise. The Mariners franchise was formed in 1977 as a member of the American League. Darrell Johnson was hired as the first Mariners manager, serving for just over three seasons before being replaced during the 1980 season. In terms of tenure, Lou Piniella has managed more games and seasons than any other coach in their franchise history. He managed the Mariners to four playoff berths (1995, 1997, 2000 and 2001), led the team to the American League Championship Series in 1995, 2000 and 2001, and won the Manager of the Year award in 1995 and 2001. Pinella is the only manager in Mariners history to lead a team into the playoffs, with one of those times after a 116-win season, tying the record for most wins in a season. None of the previous managers had made it to the playoffs before. Piniella, however, managed the team in 34 playoff games, winning 15, and losing 19. Dick Williams is the only Mariners manager to have been inducted into the Baseball Hall of Fame.

There have been nine interim managers in Mariners history. In 1980, manager Darrell Johnson was replaced by Maury Wills. In 1981, manager Rene Lachemann replaced Maury Wills. In 1983, Lachemann was relieved by Del Crandall. Crandall did not last a full season either, as Chuck Cottier took over his job in 1984. By 1986, Cottier was replaced with a temporary manager, Marty Martinez. After one game, the Mariners found Dick Williams to take over the role of manager. He in turn was replaced by Jim Snyder in 1988. In 2007, manager Mike Hargrove resigned and was replaced with bench coach John McLaren midseason. A year later, in 2008, the Mariners front office decided McLaren was not performing by their standards, and was fired and replaced with bench coach Jim Riggleman.

Don Wakamatsu is the present manager, hired in fall 2008 to replace Riggleman.

Statistics are accurate through July 15th of the 2008 MLB season.

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2007 Seattle Mariners season

The Seattle Mariners' 2007 season was their 31st in franchise history, and has started with the Mariners trying to win their first AL West title since they tied the MLB record for wins in a season in the 2001. Right fielder José Guillén and designated hitter José Vidro were expected to be key players for the year.

After spending two and a half seasons managing the Mariners and guiding the team to a 44-33 record this season, including a Major League-best 25-12 record since May 22, manager Mike Hargrove shocked the team by announcing his resignation prior to a July 1 game against the Toronto Blue Jays. Hargrove said he could no longer give the same passion or commitment to his bosses and players. Bench coach John McLaren was named as Hargrove's replacement. The Mariners won eight consecutive games between June 23 and July 1, making Hargrove the first manager since 1900 to resign his position after a winning streak of more than seven games.

The Mariners longest winning streak was eight games between 23 June to 1 July, whilst their longest losing streak was nine, from 25 August to 2 September, effectively ending their running for the ALDS.

For the seventh consecutive time in his seven year career, Ichiro Suzuki was named to the All-Star Game, held at AT&T Park in San Francisco. Closing pitcher J. J. Putz was selected to his first All-Star Game. Suzuki was voted the Most Valuable Player of the All-Star game, going 3-for-3 with a two-run, inside-the-park home run (the first home run in All-Star history to be hit inside the park). Three days after the All-Star game, on July 13, The Mariners announced that they had signed Suzuki to a five-year contract extension with an estimated value of $90 million, making Suzuki the highest-paid player in Mariners history for the second time.

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Source : Wikipedia