Daren Brown hopes he's considered as the Seattle Mariners search for a manager for 2011, and he acknowledged that coming up from Tacoma in August was a thrill for him.
“Every day up here is special, but that first game I managed – Aug. 9 – probably stands out,” Brown said. “We turned a triple play. We won the game and afterward Franklin Gutierrez gave me the ball from the final out.
“I’ll never forget that.”
Sunday night, after the final game of the season left Brown’s record as interim manager 19-31, he caught a plane for Texas – home – and a new chapter in his life.
At 43, he’ll become a first-time father.
“Well, my wife went to the hospital last week and called to tell me she was going to try and wait for me,” Brown said. “We’ve got a doctor’s appointment in the morning (today), and she could have the baby any time.”
General manager Jack Zduriencik said he’s done some preliminary groundwork in the managerial search.
“I’ve talked to some general managers, some agents have called to suggest a name or two,” Zduriencik said. “The postseason may be a slight obstacle, if we want to talk to someone who’s in the playoffs, but I think we’re gong to begin the process in earnest not this week but next week.”
Attendance for the 81st home game of the season Sunday was 23,263, giving the Mariners a final figure of 2,085,914. For those without a calculator, that’s an average of 25,752.
How’s that rank? It’s the lowest season total since 1995, when the team drew 1.9 million to the Kingdome.
Two players – Matt Tuiasosopo and Ryan Langerhans – will undergo minor elbow surgeries this week to remove bone chips.
Both played most of 2010 in pain.
“I felt it in spring training a few times, then early in the season, and I kept thinking it would be OK with rest,” Langerhans said. “It didn’t get better. After the surgery, I want to see what size those chips are.”
Tuiasosopo said his elbow hurt on throws most of the year, but not bad enough to stop him from playing.
“I had this same surgery last year, and it started bothering me again not long after surgery,” Tuiasosopo said. “You play with it, but once the season is over, why not get it fixed?”
Franklin Gutierrez started as the designated hitter for the third consecutive game but nonetheless set a major league record for most total outfield chances (415) in a season without an error. The previous record was held by St. Louis’ Curt Flood (396) and set in 1966. Justin Smoak ended his season with a 10-game hitting streak, coming out of the game after his eighth-inning single scored Ichiro Suzuki. Jose Lopez made a pinch-hit appearance in the eighth inning – his first playing time since dislocating a finger five days earlier.
Feb. 15, 2011, spring training begins in Peoria, Ariz.