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09/24/08 10:40 PM ET
Wait and see for Riggleman
Manager and staff unsure of future as offseason approaches
By Jim Street / MLB.com
SEATTLE -- A game of wait and see begins next week for Mariners manager Jim Riggleman and a coaching staff that was mostly hand picked by former manager John McLaren. They will return to their respective offseason homes following Sunday afternoon's regular-season finale against the Athletics at Safeco Field and wait for the Mariners organization to make decisions that will shape the immediate future of the franchise. The first order of business is to hire a full-time general manager, which might be Lee Pelekoudas, who replaced the dismissed Bill Bavasi in June, or someone from outside the organization. "It will be a waiting process," Riggleman said during his pregame media session on Wednesday. "Whether Lee is the [permanent] GM, or they bring hire another person, the decision will be made well into October, and maybe November." Riggleman made it clear that he wants to continue his managerial career, which also includes stints with the Padres (1992-94) and Cubs (1995-99). "I've always felt that the best thing in the game is to play," he said. "There's nothing like playing the game and the only thing that comes close to it is managing. I have been a farm director, a field coordinator, a Major League coach and managed in the big leagues, but managing is the closest thing to playing. "It's all-encompassing and I love it. It's the closest thing to the excitement and getting the adrenaline flowing." The adrenaline flow resumed on June 20, when he replaced McLaren, and the Mariners have a 33-52 record since the change. Asked how he feels he has done, Riggleman said, "I'm not comfortable answering that. How I have done is for other people to judge. I love to manage and there certainly have been some games when I go home in the evening thinking I should have done this, or should have done that differently. But there are some postseason managers that have had those days, too." The Mariners' record being what it is -- 58-99 going into Wednesday night's game against the Angels -- could be a strike against Riggleman and the coaching staff. "We have done poorly as a group and put ourselves in a position that people are going to have to make decisions," he said. "If we had done better, we would have forced the issue and we'd all be back. That's not the case."
Jim Street is a reporter for MLB.com. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.