Mariners Insider Blog

No confirmation of Wakamatsu 'frontrunner' report

What happens when you try to operate a managerial search under a cone of media silence - as Mariners GM Bill Bavasi did - is rumors pop up in the media.

So what happens if, like new GM Jack Zduriencik, you're open through the process?

KING-5 aired a story saying Oakland bench coach Don Wakamatsu was not only the frontrunner, but that his hiring was only awaiting the approval of Japanese ownership.

It's hard to say who seemed more surprised this morning - the Mariners or Wakamatsu.

The team said nothing had changed since late Monday, when Zduriencik said he hadn't told anyone - including the new manager - who the new manager was, yet.

And Wakamatsu was home in Texas, waiting on pins and needles for some word out of Seattle.

So what's the truth?

Bottom line: Of the seven candidates, Wakamatsu is high on Zduriencik's final list and could be the next manager.

But he's not, yet.

And at least two other candidates are high on that list, too.