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MLB notebook: Wedge to step down as Seattle manager

Associated Press

Seattle manager Eric Wedge told the Mariners on Friday he will not return for next season, saying it became obvious he did not have a future with the organization.

The Mariners said that Wedge will manage the final three games of the season against Oakland before beginning another search for a manager.

“It’s got to the point where it’s painfully obvious to me that I just wasn’t going to be able to move forward with this organization,” Wedge said before Friday’s game. “We see things differently and we talked about it but it just got to the point where I couldn’t continue to move forward. Ultimately, I didn’t feel like I could continue to manage here with the circumstances the way they are.”

Wedge was brought in to replace Don Wakamatsu — who was fired during the 2010 season — because of the track record he built in Cleveland taking the Indians through a rebuilding process and nearly leading them to the World Series. But the rebuilding never seemed to end in Seattle with a constant influx of young prospects from the minors being called up and some veterans failing to meet expectations.

Seattle, which has never reached the World Series, entered the final weekend 70-89, assured of its fourth consecutive losing season. Seattle general manager Jack Zduriencik said the club had every intention of bringing Wedge back for 2014.

Seattle was 212-271 with Wedge in charge entering Friday night. Wedge said his decision was not health-related.

Miami fires team president

Miami Marlins president of baseball operations Larry Beinfest has fired owner Jeffrey Loria after 12 years with the franchise. The move came as the Marlins neared the end of their third consecutive last-place season in the NL East.

Loria also fired Jim Fleming, who had been Beinfest’s special assistant. The owner said he would soon make further announcements about a new structure in baseball operations.

Beinfest was general manager of the Marlins in 2003 when they made an improbable run to the World Series title. There has been no return to the playoffs since, with Loria’s tight payrolls making it difficult for the franchise to be competitive.

Tigers great Gates Brown dies

Gates Brown, an outfielder who played his entire 13-year major league career with the Detroit Tigers, has died. The native of Crestline, Ohio, was 74.

Brown, jailed for armed robbery in Mansfield before starting his baseball career, starred as a pinch-hitter extraordinaire on Detroit’s 1968 team that won the World Series, and was part of another title with the Tigers in 1984 as a batting coach.

Brown never played more than 125 games in a season, but he made a nice contribution during the title year of ’68, when he hit .370 in 67 games. He ended up playing 1,051 games in his career, finishing with a .257 average and 84 home runs.

His career with the Tigers began in 1963, a few years after his prison term. He’d been helped by a prison guard who had noticed his ability. He hit a career-high 15 home runs in 123 games in 1964.


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