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Mariners third base coach steps down after hernia surgery

Mar 7, 2014, 10:15 AM EDT

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Mariners third base coach John Stearns was expected to miss the early part of the season after undergoing hiatal hernia surgery last week, but instead he’s decided to step down from the job altogether.

Stearns explained that he felt it would be unfair to the players and coaching staff to reclaim the position in mid-April (or later) after not participating in spring training.

Bob Dutton of the Tacoma News Tribune reports that┬áTriple-A manager Rich Donnelly will be promoted to replace Stearns on a full-time basis and when Stearns is healthy enough to work again he’ll be reassigned to a position within the organization as a scout. And in the meantime the Mariners will go looking for a new Triple-A manager.

  1. tcostant - Mar 7, 2014 at 10:46 AM

    I know Carter always gets remember more, but John Stearns was a very good catcher on some pretty bad Mets team. He always played hard. Get well soon

  2. largebill - Mar 7, 2014 at 11:36 AM

    We often talk about the bad apples in sports and I get that the out of the ordinary is more newsworthy. However, here is a guy showing a great example of putting team ahead of self. Hope players around the league hear about and understand what Stearn did. I’m sure it was not an easy decision.

  3. billybawl - Mar 7, 2014 at 12:00 PM

    That’s a shame. Stearns himself filled in for the Mariners’ regular third base coach last year, when that coach was dealing with cancer.

    FWIW, Donnelly was hired as the M’s AAA manager for 2014, but won’t serve now.

  4. plmathfoto - Mar 7, 2014 at 12:54 PM

    Stearns is awesome, good luck in recovery. If you didn’t see him play, he played football in college as well, and played baseball that way. Any year he wasn’t hurt (seemed to be every other year) he made the all star team. Good hitter, and a catcher that stole bases and lived for contact plays at home (remember football mentality).

    When we went to Mets Fantasy camp, my brother (who has the same mentality) didn’t know Stearns’ story, but we were lucky enough to have him as our manager. My brother even wore the same number as Stearns, of course they got along great, and my bro, even though the best athlete on the team, caught almost every game (he played center field the game he didn’t catch to give you an idea).

    Great guy and definite gamer, and definite BAMF

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