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Geoff Baker covers the Mariners for The Seattle Times. He provides daily coverage of the team throughout spring training, and during the season.

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July 10, 2008 10:46 AM

Sexson released; Bedard to DL

Posted by Geoff Baker

a's0708 009.jpg

Richie Sexson was released by the Mariners this morning, likely causing most of you to lose out on the office pool. Interesting timing. But seriously, not sure what the team waited for. Sexson is pictured above, in the background, doing stretching on Tuesday before what would be his final start for the team.

Erik Bedard just went on the 15-day DL, retroactive to July 4.

The team has called up Tug Hulett and pitcher Jared Wells. Hulett, an infielder, was acquired in the Ben Broussard trade last winter while relief pitcher Wells was the return in the Cha Seung Baek trade with San Diego. More in a bit.

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Posted by PayClayBennett

10:51 AM, Jul 10, 2008


Posted by BuhBye

10:51 AM, Jul 10, 2008

It's about friggin time......can we start to be an actual major league team now??

Posted by Karr

10:51 AM, Jul 10, 2008

Well, sad for Richie, but hooray for the Mariners. I'm eager to hear about the next steps...

Posted by bleacher bum

10:52 AM, Jul 10, 2008

seattle is losing it's 'sexy.' awwwwww

Posted by rob in richmond (eastcoast)

10:53 AM, Jul 10, 2008

Good luck to Richie. He sure seems like a nice guy, but his time with the Mariners should have ended long ago. One bad BB contract down, only five to go:


Posted by Bill

10:54 AM, Jul 10, 2008

It was time to release Sexson because the M's are getting solid production from Vidro and Cairo. Good luck Richie.

I wonder if any team is going to pick him up for the stretch run.

Posted by Chris from Bothell

10:55 AM, Jul 10, 2008

Would love to know what last-minute deals the Ms were trying, to get some value, any value here. it's the only reason it's taken this long, and for the timing, if a last-ditch trade effort fell through. Right?

Odd they didn't do it during the ASB, to quietly shuffle things around. Almost expected to see them just ride it out the rest of the year.

Nothing original to say about this. Trying to refrain from any ghoulish glee, trite expressions of sympathy for him, hand-wringing over how overdue it was, etc.

Let's just hope we see some good auditions at first and not just Even More Miguel Cairo / Jose Vidro.

Posted by BF Loser

10:56 AM, Jul 10, 2008

And there was much rejoicing.

Is this the FO finally starting to move on their promises after firing Bavasi/McClaren?

Makes you wonder when they'll fill the black hole at cleanup (Vidro).

Posted by dbldave

10:56 AM, Jul 10, 2008

What a great day for everyone not named Sexson! I wonder if they gave him the option to go to AAA and learn how to hit again? I still canít understand why they waited this long though.

Posted by CheapSeats

10:56 AM, Jul 10, 2008

Sad for Richie? He is laughing to the bank!

Posted by Strasburg in 2009

10:57 AM, Jul 10, 2008

I'd rather have Sexson than Vidro.

Posted by Amanda

10:58 AM, Jul 10, 2008

This Fan will TRULY miss Richie! Regardless of the dislike for him. I hope he shows up Seattle and all you haters, with which ever teams he goes to.

Good Luck RICHIE!

So the question now is, Who are you all going to pick apart now?

Posted by scottM

11:01 AM, Jul 10, 2008

Tug Hullett-- second baseman with the Rainiers in '09: 265 AB/ 17 doubles/ 5 triples/ 9 homers/ OBP .378/ SLG .508/ AVG .302/ OPS .886

Will he play 1B?

Wells is just a bandaid, it seems. 15 saves, but an era over 5. Maybe he'll prove to be a keeper, though.

Overpaid and underdelivering with the M's, but Richie is a good man. Here's to wishing him well.

Posted by NoRm

11:01 AM, Jul 10, 2008

Too easy Amanda all focus turns to Virdo let the picking begin

Posted by it's about time

11:04 AM, Jul 10, 2008

Oh, Amanda. Take your heart out of it and use your head. He is not good anymore. Nobody really hates the guy, we just don't like what he brings to the baseball field. And to answer your question....Vidro will now continue to be picked apart until he is also released.

Posted by Nickel

11:04 AM, Jul 10, 2008

Actually Amanda there are still quite a few people on the M's to continue to "pick apart." See Rob in Richmond's comments.

Posted by Adam

11:05 AM, Jul 10, 2008

Guys - we can't drop Vidro. Who's going to give Ibanez protection when a RH pitcher is opposing us?


Posted by NB

11:05 AM, Jul 10, 2008

Good luck Richie,

I'll always remember you dropping two bombs on opening day 2005 against the Twins. You probably don't have much more time in pro baseball so enjoy the rest of your life with your family and financial freedom you've secured. I hope you find your happiness.

Posted by Steve 723

11:05 AM, Jul 10, 2008

Hulett's numbers in AAA are good, so he merits a call up so we can see what he's capable of doing. I suspect Wells has been brought up to be a showcase for a potential "tack on" player on some sort of deal. Perhaps Ibanez and Wells for some good prospects?

Richie... I wish you well wherever you wind up, but I'm glad to see the M's finally make some smart moves.

Posted by Henry

11:05 AM, Jul 10, 2008

Let the game of Musical Chairs at 1B begin. Shall we work within our Minors to see if we can find a fit? Is LaHair our only power hitting 1B in the Minors? Any other in house options?

Richie, what could have been...

Posted by justanoldzag

11:06 AM, Jul 10, 2008

Better late then never. IMHO based upon the stories i read, this former Mariner was even less of a decent human then baseball player.

Now, go find Bucky and bring him back.

Posted by kranky

11:07 AM, Jul 10, 2008

Richie can now go elsewhere to resurrect his career like so many other sub-par Mariners: Cirillo; Aurilia; Spezio; etc. Even John Olerud who performed well for the Ms but then fell off a cliff was able to revive his career for awhile by going elsewhere.

Its the right move to make (and has been for a long time) but its too bad Richie just could not get the job done in Seattle.

Is there something about Seattle that makes otherwise decent players just absolutely tank when they get here?

Posted by BadmoonSeattle

11:08 AM, Jul 10, 2008

Geoff, why not get rid of Sexson and Vidro on the same day and send a message to the rest of these clowns? I am so tired of watching Vidro's worthless a** being sent out there in the 3 or 4 spot every day. Love the blog Geoff, keep up the good work

Posted by Miles

11:08 AM, Jul 10, 2008

I'm sure Sexson will be picked up, and history suggests there is a decent chance he will suddenly discover at least part of this swing once he gets out of here. Don't be too shocked it that happens. Not that I'm saying the shouldn't have been released.

As for the timing, well it strikes me that Geoff's theory back when Bavasi was fired that the team would "spread things out" for PR reasons may very well be the reason. Maybe VIdro will be let go next week, during the All Star break.

Glad to see Hulett get a shot. With there being so little at Tacoma, it's time to give all the good performers there a decent chance so we can see what we've got.

Posted by DFA

11:11 AM, Jul 10, 2008

As my last employer used to say on such occasions, "We wish Richie well in his future endeavors."

Posted by Amanda

11:11 AM, Jul 10, 2008

You guys are a riot. I'd say, Don't you have anything better to do than pick the M's apart? But I guess Im in your boat trying to defend each of them too. LOL :)

How about we pick a pitcher apart starting with Batista!!

How many of you really think that this club will get better after releasing Richie? Im NOT saying he was the best player, but come on now... it takes more than one person to make a team!

Posted by Miles

11:15 AM, Jul 10, 2008

Kranky said:
"Is there something about Seattle that makes otherwise decent players just absolutely tank when they get here?"

My theory is that it has to do with Safeco. Most ballparks are fairly generic in that a player that does well in one will likely do well in another. However, there are some that require a certain skill set for a player to hit well in over time. In older parks the details of this are fairly well known, but in newer parks like Safeco and Petco, for example, these factors are still being figured out. Of course, you also have to have personnel decision makers that understand what's going on. Gillick wasn't perfect, but he had a fairly good idea of who could hit in Safeco and who couldn't. Bavasi's problem was that he never really had a clue or ignored those factors, which is why a team that looked like it should hit struggled.

That's my theory, anyway.

Posted by David Gee

11:17 AM, Jul 10, 2008

I think that part of the reason they stretched out the release of Sexson was to let Lahair, Hulett, et al, have some everyday experience at Tacoma so that they're more major league ready when they get called up. Hulett has 1/2 a season of experience at Tacoma so he might be able to contribute. Actually, I don't think that at all. The Mariner organization is just stupid.

Posted by tanner

11:19 AM, Jul 10, 2008

Dam I will miss making fun of his name... Dickey Sexson as I always referred to him. Nice guy but we all he was a head case after the brawl, he seemd to be in constant mental and physical decline. Yet continue I have respect for him, playing a kids game for millions and gettig overpaid to come to the beautiful PNW from Milwaukee. Dam I wish I oculd have that life...coming from a former Lakota Jr High SP/1st baseman extraordinaire here. F-Dub in the house...holla back!

It was nice to have him when he would crush those deep homers to CF but they have become too few as of late. You did never lived up to Seattle's expectations fully but maybe we expected too much from you. I mean this is a town who grew up with Alvin Davis at 1B all star 1980's...he was tight!

Any how Richard, Have a nice retirement and enjoy those millions I suggest investing in Oil.

AS Far as Bedard I want to know who cleard this guys physical and why did we give up so much for a guy who seems to have a very lacking health and work ethic. I know the M's suck this year and all but c'mon Erik your supposed to be a leader, live up to your name and get healthy, rehab well and i want to see a complete game victory by years end or at least a shut out combined with the pen.

*!props to the Pen great performance last night, AR looking smooth as hell. And about Morrow new slogan "Sit Down See you Too MORROW! You got punked" With that 100 mph cannon. Please stay healthy your a bright spot who is fun to watch.


Posted by Capo

11:19 AM, Jul 10, 2008

"I could while away the hours
Conferrin' with the Blowers
Consultin' with the train
And my head, I'd be scratchin'
While my thoughts were busy hatchin'
If I only had a brain.

I'd unravel ev'ry riddle
For any individ'le
In trouble or in pain

With the thoughts you'd be thinkin'
You could be another Lincoln,
If you only had a brain.

Oh, I could tell you why
The ocean's near the shore,
I could think of things I never thunk before
And then I'd sit and think some more.

I would not be just a nuffin'
My head all full of stuffin'
My heart all full of pain.
I would dance and be merry
Life would be a ding-a-derry
If I only had a brain"

Official Mariner Theme Song

Posted by David Gee

11:19 AM, Jul 10, 2008

Miles, your theory has a lot of merit. Notice that almost all the guys who flopped here are right handed?

Posted by BrianL

11:21 AM, Jul 10, 2008

Miles - Part if it is the Safeco Effect, which is why any right-handed hitting 3B you bring in is going to suffer just as much as Adrian Beltre has.

In Sexson's case, it was what is referred to as "old player skills." Sexson was a high-K, high power type of hitter who wasn't particularly fast and doesn't play very good defense (His height is his one saving grace, but he covered very little ground off the bag). These kinds of players hit a wall much faster than others and have a tendency to fall off cliffs. Once their bat-speed is gone, they have nothing left to go off of. This season we saw that Richie couldn't square up 92 MPH fastballs anymore. His only hope was to get a meatball over the plate coming in at 84-88.

Posted by sunshine

11:22 AM, Jul 10, 2008

Yes... Sexson had to go, should have been gone last year. We all held on to the hope that he would come around, or catch fire, or simply start hitting. He had just enough hits last year to keep him around just in case. Of course he rarely hit when you needed him to. Sorry it didn't work, all the best in the future. It is what it is and life will go on.....

Posted by statboys dad

11:24 AM, Jul 10, 2008

N L here he comes...Or maybe boston?

Good luck take a deep breath and have a nice run.

Posted by David Gee

11:27 AM, Jul 10, 2008

Don't forget too that we're in what by and large is a post-steriod era where there will once again be a natural age declination. Given that, the M's ESPECIALLY need to stay away from right handed hitters who are on the wrong side of 30.

Posted by kranky

11:36 AM, Jul 10, 2008

Miles' theory makes a certain amount of sense but does not seem to explain everything. Left hand hitting Olerud, for example, hit well for a few years at Safeco but then crashed and burned hard.

Beltre has always played in tough pitchers' parks (Dodger Stadium) and performed fairly well. I don't fault Bavasi for bringing him in, but he has not lived up expectations either.

Bret Boone, amped up on whatever he was amped up on, performed unbelievably well as a right handed hitter in Safeco, before falling into a deep trench.

Lets hope Lee P. has more of the Gillick eye for Safeco suitable hitters than the Bavasi eye for throwing money at anything that moves.

Posted by tanner

11:37 AM, Jul 10, 2008

I agree with the theory of Saefco's dimensions hindering righty's and mgt flat out making the wrong decisions. but I want to know how we get beyond that...
What is the next "right move" we all are self proclaimed experts so now I say who is the future of 1B and 3B in Seattle over next few years? Our power positions need some talent and need the right kind of hitters for this park.
In fact all AL West parks except for Texas seem to be very large and Oakland is terrible. I say find a younger powerful lefty who can hit for average.
Lets see what we have in the farm system and let the youth have a shot now since we are out of any playoff contention.
Keep Clement in Daily, bring back Balentein in LF and move Raul to DH. Drop Vidro and keep Cairo as Util. Give other infielders a shot. or LaHair I keep hearing about him at 1b?

Posted by karl hungus

11:38 AM, Jul 10, 2008

i'd much rather have sexson than vidro, but in a couple more weeks i don't think we'll have either one of them.

a little background on tug hulett. he played his rookie ball in spokane and was known as a scrapper. he plays hard and it appears from his stats this year that he's developed some power. his dad is former major leaguer tim hulett who is currently the manager of the spokane indians. he knows the area, and he plays hard, might be a good fit.

Posted by bongo

11:39 AM, Jul 10, 2008

Only problem is: now byebyeSexon needs a new name. byebyeVidro? byebyeBedard? helloHulett?
so many choices....

Posted by fred

11:43 AM, Jul 10, 2008

Strange timing and strange replacements. Vidro and Cairo can split time at first base but they are not major-league-regular quality. Nor does either have any power.

Hulett and Wells no doubt will get a look to see if they will matter in 2009 or if they should be shipped onward or dropped this winter from the 40-man roster.

Thought the M's would hold onto Sexson until later in July in the hope that he might heat up, hit a couple dingers and get a nibble from a contender as trade bait---even if the M's had to eat most of his remaining 2008 salary. Unless we are missing something, he is gone...the M's eat his salary...and nothing is received in return.

If and when Bedard, Washburn or Rhodes is traded, a replacement first baseman must be part of the return package---unless the M's plan to pay for Texeira next year.

Posted by rob in richmond (eastcoast)

11:43 AM, Jul 10, 2008

How about VominosVidro!

Posted by Dad says Hi

11:44 AM, Jul 10, 2008

Ding Dong the witch is dead.

Posted by oregongal

11:46 AM, Jul 10, 2008

Not sorry he's gone, but I wish him well. Unfortunately, we have so many other players with declining, declined, or marginal skills that there's no lack of other players who need changing.

Posted by Jonathan

11:46 AM, Jul 10, 2008

No worries, Vidro's days are probably numbered as well.

I watched Baletin play a couple days ago, why bring him back up when he's not even hitting AAA pitching right now? I'd much rather see guys like Tug get a chance who are at least hitting down there. Even Clement earned his call up by dominating in AAA.

With the money and years owed - I think it's hard to just eat Bautista, Silva and Washburn's salaries. I think you can trade Washburn though. I don't really care for/dislike Cairo either way.

Posted by kranky

11:47 AM, Jul 10, 2008

So, can Texeira hit at Safeco? Does anyone know his stats for hitting here?

Posted by kaseyswagger

11:49 AM, Jul 10, 2008

Man what took so long?

Posted by fred

11:52 AM, Jul 10, 2008

Is Hatteberg still available? He's a lefty, I heard he can play 1B...

Posted by Doug

11:55 AM, Jul 10, 2008

Too bad! I wanted to see him strike out or hit into a double play one more time!

50 million over four years! What a joke! These guys make way too much money! It's crazy! With so much suffering in our country right now especially.

Posted by ethan

11:55 AM, Jul 10, 2008

Finally...the Faun from Pan's Labyrinth is released.

Posted by The Centerfield Bum

11:56 AM, Jul 10, 2008

It's interesting that the M's called up a middle infielder to take Richie's spot on the roster as opposed to a 1st baseman. I suspect this means that the M's are not high on Bryan LaHair, and that we'll likely being seeing a platoon of Vidro and Cairo at 1st base for the foreseeable future.

The lack of anyone to call up to play 1st base may explain why it has taken so long to release Sexson.

It's a shame that Mike Morse got injured early in the season while playing an outfield position that he wasn't particularly well suited for. 1st base could be a good position for Morse, and it would have been great to get a good look at him there this season.

Posted by NewFan

11:57 AM, Jul 10, 2008

I'm hoping Batista goes next - but the 9M contract for next year is the worry. Apart from pitching rubbish this year - he is 37 and injured his back, ankle, hip and now groin I believe this year. Vidro's easier and cheaper to get rid of - but i do want Batista out.

Posted by Dakota M's Fan

11:58 AM, Jul 10, 2008

Sexson seemed to be turning the corner and hitting pretty well. I think this is more based off of pleasing the fairweather fans than anything else. I hope that Sexson gets on with a playoff caliber team and shows all of the naysayers in Seattle how wrong they were.

Posted by dc

12:01 PM, Jul 10, 2008

Hatteberg was released by the Reds because he wasn't succeeding as a bench player. He lives in Gig Harbor but if I wasn't him I wouldn't take the contract. He's going to get paid the remainder of his contract so why would he go to a losing team to make just a few more dollars than he already does? Along with that, being home he can be with his kids and do all the summer parenting things that he has missed out on for years.

And....all the M's need is another veteran player. Bring up the kids and let them play. They are the future......put some trust in them and move forward.

Posted by dc

12:02 PM, Jul 10, 2008

I meant "If I was him" not "If I wasn't him"....sorry about the typo

Posted by Brian in Tucson

12:14 PM, Jul 10, 2008

There goes the season. . .

Posted by bseblfevr

12:21 PM, Jul 10, 2008

don't let the BANK VAULT door hit you on the way out!

Posted by D Truth

12:38 PM, Jul 10, 2008

Too little too late ... yet better late than never.

Posted by Row 22

12:45 PM, Jul 10, 2008

About time, Now Brian LaHair to 1b !!!!!

Posted by Ms Fan in Exile

1:21 PM, Jul 10, 2008

You all have it soooo wrong.

This is what needed to happen for Pelekoudas to be able to sign Bonds as our new 1B!!

I hear it is a 5 yr, $100 million contract.

Posted by byebyeSexson

1:24 PM, Jul 10, 2008


Posted by byebyeSexsonforthelasttime

1:33 PM, Jul 10, 2008

Posted by bongo

11:39 AM, Jul 10, 2008

Only problem is: now byebyeSexon needs a new name. byebyeVidro? byebyeBedard? helloHulett?
so many choices....

Posted by byebye

1:35 PM, Jul 10, 2008

On the last post it should indicate I'm now just byebye. It got lost inthe cut and paste.


Posted by Suxsonlesssmellsnice

3:12 PM, Jul 10, 2008

So long, hack.

Posted by jeff928

3:24 PM, Jul 10, 2008

Richie gets paid $14M a year for accomplishing nothing....and then has the gall to display an attitude? Good riddance.

Erica Bedard has outstayed his welcome. Time to get rid of the Bavasi projects and develop a real contending team.

Posted by jeff928

3:26 PM, Jul 10, 2008

Erica is a wuss extraordinaire. What is it this time? A cracked nail or torn pantyhose?

Sexson was bad beyond description.

Posted by Dave from the coast

3:44 PM, Jul 10, 2008

Richie's relationship with Seattle deteriorated so much that he'd once referred to fans wanting him in the 'electric chair' instead of batting. I don't hate Richie; indeed, his huge home runs in years past, in crucial situations have been something to marvel at. I think it took so long to release him, because of his big contract...where management keeps playing him, hoping against hope that their Big Player will Earn That Big Salary. A kiss-off of this nature obviously means that there was Nothing More that Sexson could do, and that his Time Had Come. Why do players tank when they join the M's? The size of Safeco, 'The pitchers' park' might have something to do with it, but also, I wonder if a new player thinks, "gosh, I'm going to Seattle; I'll never be in any kind of championship game there, so I might as well play out my contract", that sort of thing. It's a good thing I'm a baseball fan rather than just a Mariners' fan. The Mariners? Well, 'they are what they are.'

Posted by SaukMtnMan

3:45 PM, Jul 10, 2008

Richie is a class act and a nice guy but unfortunately his play just never measured up to his stature or what we paid to land him. Remember his first game as Mariner? First two plate appearances: two home runs.
Man, for such a thunderous start as an M, it sure ended with a prolonged whimper.

Posted by italianmama

5:49 PM, Jul 10, 2008

POOR RICHIE! I hate to see him go. Seattle needs to get some real fans, not ones that boo their own players. What kind of fans are those? I will miss Richie. Hopefully he will be picked up soon and come back to Safeco and show us what he is really made of.

Posted by peter425

7:14 PM, Jul 10, 2008

Richie will sign with the NYY, for D in the late innings. Now you all need to get rid of Vidro and for god sakes get a new broadcast team...Niehaus yes he is a hall of fame caster, but he has trouble seeing the action...ah let him retire on his own terms...he is funny to listen too now.

Sims and Rizzz are terrible and BLOWers puts my dog to sleep...and can you can the rally fry thing.
Thank god I'm not an M's fan.

Posted by downonstrikes

9:49 PM, Jul 10, 2008

Is Amanda really Erica Bedard? Methinks so.

Posted by You so funny

11:14 PM, Jul 10, 2008

I love how people are wishing Richie well like he is actually going to read this blog. They all make me laugh.

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