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Mariners get a new beat

The Mariners will have both a new and familiar face covering the team this year for the area's two biggest print publications.

Mike Stobe

Some news to pass along on this Thanksgiving eve, as there's been some shuffling among those who will be covering the Mariners on daily basis through the 2014 season. If you've missed the things that have already happened, Larry Stone moved to columnist, Geoff Baker moved off the beat and into a more investigative-type role (which is great, breaking big stories and getting dirt is something Geoff has always done very well), and Ryan Divish was hired away from the Tacoma News Tribune to replace Baker at the Times.

Monday was Divish's first day on the beat, and he was welcomed with the minor news of Chuck Armstrong retiring. If for some reason you've never followed Divish's coverage of the team and only read the Times, you're in for a treat - Divish is a bright, adaptive personality who takes a realistic yet educated approach to his coverage, and he's full of plenty of snark and dark humor that lies within everybody who's been forced to tag along with the misadventures of this franchise over the last decade plus. The Times is lucky to have him, and I'm thrilled he's sticking around.

There's a hole vacated by Divish at the TNT, and many heads were turned when Bob Dutton (@Royals_Report) casually announced to his nearly 25,000 followers that he'd accepted the open position at the News Tribune to cover the Mariners. Bob is currently with The Kansas City Star, and while many of you aren't familiar with his work, we're getting a good one. Bob is highly active on Twitter and is beloved by the Twitter-friendly Royals fanbase, and he'll bring a ton of experience to the beat. Jeff Passan (Yahoo) offered this lofty praise of Dutton.

There's a lot of things changing in the Mariners organization right now, as well as things around it. 2014 isn't far away, and things are already looking different. Change isn't always good, but it is most definitely new. And new things bring excitement and hope, fueled by irrationality and self-justifications. Congrats to Divish and Dutton, and hopefully the new and improved Mariners beat has an equally new and improved Mariners team.