Seattle Mariners manager Eric Wedge has told the team that he will not return for the 2014 season, according to a team press release. As MLB.com's Greg Johns notes, general manager Jack Zduriencik was looking to bring Wedge back for next season before he decided to resign.
Zduriencik said Wedge's "job was not in danger" and he would have been asked to return. "This was his choice."— Greg Johns (@GregJohnsMLB) September 28, 2013
Wedge, 45, has been with the Mariners for the past three seasons, leading the team to a 212-272 record during his time at the helm. He suffered a stroke in July and missed 28 games before returning to the Mariners after a month-long recovery period. With the uncertainty surrounding the team's front office and ownership situation, Wedge decided that leaving now and potentially continuining his career elsewhere would be the best decision for his future.
In ten seasons as a major league manager with the Indians (2003-2009) and Mariners (2011-2013), Wedge has posted a 773-845 career record and was named American League Manager of the Year in 2007. He is unlikely to manage in the majors in 2014 due to his stroke, but is still widely regarded as a great baseball mind who will likely be managing again in the next couple of years.
While it is unclear who the Mariners will consider to replace Wedge, Dave Cameron of the U.S.S. Mariner speculates that the new manager will come from within the organization, and that senior advisor Ted Simmons and bench coach Robby Thompson are considered the most likely candidates at this time.