Mariners Insider Blog

Of coaches and Cora, rumors & free agents

A few things worth catching up on:

- The most sought after free agent hitter on the market this winter, in terms of how many teams are in pursuit, is 37-year-old Raul Ibanez. ESPN has listed 10 teams, including Seattle, that have strong interest.

- Don Wakamatsu has been mum on candidates for his coaching staff, but one of the intriguing names he's been linked to is former Athletics and Mets pitching coach Rick Peterson.

Before the Mariners press conference ended, there were reports out of the Bay area that Oakland hitting coach Ty Van Burkleo had been offered the same jo in Seattle.

- When Wakamatsu was hired, some folks reported Joey Cora had been the choice of some in the Mariners front office. Not true, and not close. No one involved in the interviews had Cora in his top five.

- Although GM Jack Zduriencik hasn't shown the slightest inclination to pursue high-priced free agents, it hasn't stopped the Mariners from being lumped into rumors. Whether it's Jim Edmonds, Derek Lowe or Ben Sheets, whenever writers list all the teams with interest, the last one mentioned is Seattle.