Seattle Mariners

Zduriencik gets honor as executive of the year

Seattle Mariners general manager Jack Zduriencik earned some kudos Wednesday when he was named the recipient of the 2009 Andrew "Rube" Foster American League Executive of the Year award.

The Rockies’ Dan O’Dowd won the National League award.

Zduriencik will receive the award Saturday at the 10th annual Legacy Awards at the Negro Leagues Baseball Museum in Kansas City, Mo.

“This is a tremendous honor, and I will accept it on behalf of the entire Mariners organization,” Zduriencik said in a press release. “Rube Foster is a true legend in the game of baseball and to receive an award named after him and his legacy is a humbling honor. There are few things that would cause me to miss the Mariners FanFest event, but this is certainly one of them. I thank our entire baseball operations department, scouts, minor league staff and entire organization for their contributions and in receiving this award I represent all of them.”

Andrew “Rube” Foster was a player, manager and executive who helped organize the Negro National League, the first long-standing professional league for African-American ballplayers (1920-31). Foster was elected to the Baseball Hall of Fame in 1981.

The Negro Leagues Baseball Museum started the Legacy Awards in 2000 to recognize the best Major League players, managers and executives in the name and spirit of Negro Leagues legends such as Foster, Josh Gibson, Cool Papa Bell, and Buck O’Neil.

It’s the second time that Zduriencik has been honored for his front-office work. In 2007, while he was director of scouting for the Milwaukee Brewers, he was named Baseball America’s Executive of the Year, the first non-GM to win the award.

Short hops

The New York Yankees reached agreement with former Mariners outfielder Randy Winn on a one-year, $2 million contract that apparently leaves Johnny Damon out of a job. … Kenny Lofton, upon learning he will be enshrined in the Cleveland Indians Hall of Fame, said he performed without steroids during the steroids era. … Andre Dawson will be inducted into the Hall of Fame wearing a Montreal Expos cap, despite his preference for a Cubs image. … Closer Huston Street and the Colorado Rockies have finalized a $22.5 million, three-year contract … The Pirates plan to put a statue of Bill Mazeroski outside PNC Park to commemorate the Hall of Famer’s home run that won the World Series 50 years ago. … An appeals court rejected a defamation lawsuit filed by Ann Ladd, an accused stalker, against the Brewers and announcer Bob Uecker.

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