"“I always said [during spring training] ‘We’re the fourth best team in our division – we lost 101 games,” Zduriencik said. “I wouldn’t ever talk about our record this year, I never concentrated on it. What I wanted were players who played hard and cared about this franchise and this community. Talent wins, and until we raise our talent level we need maximum effort. I think the fact that we’ve played 31 one-run games, come from behind so many times this season – that speaks to the character of a team."
Zduriencik, however, must separate the fan from the GM occasionally, and he knows that the Mariners’ record on June 23 isn’t the yardstick by which to measure progress in the franchise.""