SEATTLE: Seattle Mariners' Executive Vice President & GM Jack Zduriencik speaks with the media after the team announced the retirement of Ken Griffey Jr. prior to the game against the Minnesota Twins at Safeco Field in Seattle, Washington. (Photo by Otto Greule Jr/Getty Images)
Although his rebuilding project hasn’t panned out on the field yet, the Mariners seem pleased with the job general manager Jack Zduriencik has done since taking over the front office after the 2008 season.
On Wednesday, the team and Zduriencik agreed to a multiyear extension.
Terms of the deal were not disclosed.
In Zduriencik's first season, the Mariners made a massive improvement -- from 61-101 to 85-77 -- due largely to a massive improvement in run prevention and a massive amount of good luck; that 85-77 record came even though the M's were outscored by 52 runs.
In Zduriencik's second season, the Mariners magically returned to 61-101, due largely to an "offense" that ranked among the worst of the Expansion Era.
In this, Zduriencik's third season, the Mariners are heading toward somewhere in the neighborhood of 92 losses, due largely (again) to a hitting "attack" that's most charitably described as inept.
In Zduriencik's defense, there weren't many hitters in the organization when he arrived, and the only move he's made that's truly tanked is Chone Figgins' four-year, $36 million contract. At some point the M's are going to pull a Rowand and just dump Figgins, but with the deal not yet halfway complete, Figgins probably has at least part of 2012 to prove he's not the biggest bust in franchise history.