Mariners GM Jerry Dipoto 'Embarrassed' After Kevin Mather's Comments

Rob Goldberg@TheRobGoldbergFeatured ColumnistFebruary 23, 2021

Seattle Mariners general manager Jerry Dipoto speaks Thursday, Jan. 23, 2020, in Seattle during the Seattle Mariners annual news conference before the start of Spring Training baseball. (AP Photo/Ted S. Warren)
Ted S. Warren/Associated Press

Kevin Mather resigned as president and CEO of the Seattle Mariners on Monday after inflammatory comments he made earlier this month came to light.

General manager Jerry Dipoto discussed the consequences of Mather's actions in a video call with reporters Tuesday:

"I'm embarrassed that this is the way we're viewed because for those of you who've been around me or [manager Scott Servais] or this team, this is not how we're wired. It's embarrassing to be categorized or deal with the stigma that we are now pinned with, and we have to shed it. It's ours to bear and we now have to be accountable to that, and then find a way to grow beyond it."

Speaking to a Rotary Club, Mather criticized certain players' ability to speak English and admitted to manipulating service time, according to a transcript provided by Grant Bronsdon and Kate Preusser of Lookout Landing.

Several of the players Mather discussed are still with the organization, including Dominican prospect Julio Rodriguez. Mather called Rodriguez "loud" and said, "His English is not tremendous."

As well, Mather said the Mariners kept top prospects like Jarred Kelenic and Logan Gilbert off the major league roster last season to extend team control: "There was no chance you were going to see these young players at T-Mobile Park. We weren't going to put them on the 40-man roster, we weren't going to start the service time clock."

He also called veteran third baseman Kyle Seager "overpaid."

"I'd say that the temperature was very hot with a number of guys that certainly their names were mentioned for a number of different reasons," Servais said Tuesday. "It wasn't surprising at all."