Seattle Mariners

Mariners’ overhaul cuts deep into minor league staffs

The Mariners’ staff overhaul under new general manager Jerry Dipoto shows no signs of slowing.

At least 10 minor league staff members won’t be returning for next season, according to sources. Departures include two members of the Triple-A Tacoma staff: pitching coach Jaime Navarro and hitting coach Cory Snyder.

There is no word, at this point, on whether Rainiers manager Pat Listach will be asked to return for a second year.

Navarro, 47, just completed his seventh year with the organization and his second as Tacoma’s pitching coach. He served from 2011-13 as the Mariners bullpen coach.

Snyder, 52, spent five years in the club’s minor league system, including the last two seasons at Tacoma.

When hired on Sept. 28, Dipoto pointedly observed that the major league “foundation here is fantastic,” but cited a need to “have a steady flow of young players coming from the minor league system.”

Dipoto signaled an imminent staff face-lift by acknowledging “inevitably, there will be change and others will join us.”

Those changes include the departure of Chris Gwynn, who won’t return for a fifth season as the organization’s director of player development.

The club has made no announcement regarding scouting director Tom McNamara, who is completing his seventh season.

Dipoto is revamping the major league staff in the wake of his decision Friday to fire manager Lloyd McClendon and four coaches. Two other coaches will be offered other positions within the organization.

All major league clubs tend to make staff changes in October because contracts for most personnel typically expire at the end of the month. While one insider described the current purge as “an absolute bloodletting,” it isn’t unexpected.

Club president Kevin Mather alluded to the performance of the scouting and player-development departments as a major factor in the Aug. 28 decision to fire general manager Jack Zduriencik.

Those problems were underscored recently when Baseball America cited only three players from the Mariners’ four full-season affiliates as being among the top 20 prospects in their leagues.

  Comments