SEATTLE (AP) Seattle Mariners manager Eric Wedge said Saturday his uncertain contract status wasn't the reason he decided not to return next season.
A day after announcing he would step down after this season, Wedge said he wanted to clarify his reasoning, after much of the media coverage focused on his lack of a contract for next season. Wedge had said earlier in the week he felt he was left ``hanging out there'' by the organization regarding his status for 2014.
However, on Saturday he said he wouldn't have returned even if a long-term contract had been offered.
``Let me be clear here, the contract was not the reason I'm not coming back here,'' Wedge said. ``If they'd offered me a five-year contract, I'm not coming back here.''
Wedge entered Saturday's game against Oakland with a 212-272 record as Mariners' manager since he joined the team in 2011, replacing Don Wakamatsu, who was fired during the 2010 season.
Wedge said the reason behind his departure was a difference of opinion between him and the Mariners' front office: CEO Howard Lincoln, president Chuck Armstrong and general manager Jack Zduriencik.
``Where they see the club, they being Howard, Chuck and Jack, and where I see the club, my vision of the future and theirs are just different,'' Wedge said. ``That's as plain as I can make it.''
That characterization contradicts what Zduriencik said on Friday regarding differences between himself and Wedge.
``I think that was strictly related to the contract,'' Zduriencik said. ``In terms of our philosophy and stuff, I think we're pretty much on the same page.''
When Wedge was asked on Saturday about Zduriencik seeming to indicate the two of them shared a vision for the team, his response was, ``That's not the case.''
``As I said, I'm not coming back here because of the contract, it's because of how they see things and how I see things,'' Wedge said.
Wedge wouldn't say what he felt the front office's vision for the team was, but he said his thoughts were simple.
``It's just about sticking with the kids you believe in, adding to it and being patient. Sticking to the program,'' Wedge said. ``And having consistency. You have to have consistency in personnel. Every time you turn over you start over again, to a certain extent.''
Seattle entered Saturday's game against Oakland with a 70-90 record and will finish with a losing record for the fourth straight season.