M's scouting director dismissed, source says
Word began to spread through the scouting community Monday that Mariners scouting director Bob Fontaine has been let go by Seattle's new...
Seattle Times staff reporter
Word began to spread through the scouting community Monday that Mariners scouting director Bob Fontaine has been let go by Seattle's new general manager, Jack Zduriencik.
One source said that Fontaine was called into a meeting with Zduriencik on Monday and informed that he was being dismissed. According to the source, "He didn't even have a chance to fight for his job."
Fontaine reportedly informed his Mariners scouting staff of his dismissal in a voice mail.
At his introductory news conference on Friday, Zduriencik said he planned to meet with the baseball operations staff as soon as possible and decide on who he would retain. Those meetings apparently began Monday and are ongoing.
It is not known who will replace Fontaine, who has run the Mariners' amateur scouting since 2003.
In another development, Tony Blengino, Zduriencik's top assistant when he was scouting director in Milwaukee, is expected to join Zduriencik's staff in Seattle.
According to industry sources, the Brewers have agreed to let Zduriencik, who was named Seattle's GM last Wednesday, hire two members of his Milwaukee scouting staff.
Those are expected to be Blengino and Tom McNamara, Milwaukee's East Coast crosschecker and the man credited with scouting and signing Prince Fielder. It is not known yet what positions they will hold in Seattle.
Blengino, 44, just finished his third season as assistant scouting director in Milwaukee under Zduriencik. A former certified public accountant, Blengino is a member of the Society of American Baseball Research and has a strong background in statistical analysis.
McNamara has 15 years of scouting experience, including two seasons as an area scout for the Brewers in Central Florida (2001-02). He then served five seasons with the Padres as a professional scout before returning to the Brewers this past season.
McNamara played one season in the Mariners' minor-league system.
Fontaine, who has been in baseball 36 years, was brought in by former GM Bill Bavasi to become the Mariners' vice president of scouting on Dec. 5, 2003.
According to the Milwaukee Journal-Sentinel, former A's manager Ken Macha appears to be have emerged as the front-runner for the Brewers' vacant manager job. Macha is likely to be on Zduriencik's list of managerial candidates for the Mariners' job.
Larry Stone: email@example.com
Copyright © 2008 The Seattle Times Company
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