He is just like me!

Something happened yesterday that restored my hope in a fine institution. Something wonderful and forward-moving.

No, not the election. That was weeks ago. This is much more important.

Yesterday, the Seattle Mariners named Don Wakamatsu as their new manager.

See, I told you it was more important.

This choice by the new general manager and the M’s front office is, in my opinion, a good one. Wakamatsu is coming to the M’s from the Oakland A’s, where he is currently the bench coach. According to all accounts, he is a solid, no-drama kind of guy. And trust me, even in a town where all our baseball managers are measured up to Lou Piniella, we could use a little less drama this time around.

And it’s NOT Joey Cora. I don’t care how much you liked him as a player and a person. Taking Cora on as manager would be like saying that 1995 was our best year ever and we will never recapture that. As a devoted Mariners fan, I can’t take that. Also, I don’t believe that Cora is a forceful enough personality to deal with some of the snit-fits that some of the current roster have been wont to throw.

Wakamatsu even has the approval of Alvin Davis.

And reading through the stories about him, I was struck. He’s got a Japanese last name, yet he doesn’t really look… Hey, COOL! He’s half-Japanese!! He’s fourth-generation! His grandparents were in camp at Tule Lake!

He’s just like me!

Granted, he’s 15 years older than me (and, you know, has actually played baseball professionally and all that), but I was still just awestruck. According to the articles that I’ve read, he will be the first Asian-American manager in the major leagues. That matters less to me, because I truly believe that sports is the last best meritocracy that exists. Still, I identify with this guy in a very strong way. And for the sake of my team, I really really really want him to succeed.

I have always believed that Asian players were underrated in the major leagues. The advent of Ichiro and the others that have followed, like Matsuzaka, have shattered that illusion forever.

And someday, Tad, a fifth-generation one-quarter Japanese American kid, could grow up to be a major league manager, too. Of course, I’m kind of leery about letting him anywhere near a full-size Louisville Slugger. He’s dangerous enough with a plastic lightsaber.

And, on another note – NINE YEARS!!! Happy Anniversary to CW Mom and CW Dad!!

5 Responses to “He is just like me!”

  1. Ressis
    November 20th, 2008 07:17

    Deanna, face it: OUR KIDS ARE WHITE! Yes, Tad resembles the Captain a bit, but he also looks a lot like his dad (white). The only Japanese feature your kids have is their middle names, they sure don’t look it. That quarter of Japanese shows up nowhere in my kids.

    And I still think Tad’s calling is to be a mechanic. He loves cars, and it would be great to have a mechanic in the family.

  2. Aunt Lynda
    November 20th, 2008 09:20

    I always thought you and your kids just completed our rainbow family, thinking of Derek and of Lori’s kids, which are 1/4 Mexican. Ain’t it great!
    And I agree, the new manager, even if he was purple, sounds like a good match. Thanks for the link.

  3. Cousin Shelley
    November 20th, 2008 10:24

    I’m proud that our family is a rainbow! I love it! Our family was cool before the Oval Office was. 🙂
    I’m excited about out new President & I’m excited about the new M’s Manger, too! 🙂

  4. Matthew
    November 20th, 2008 16:01

    I thought about you when this was announced. I thought you’d think that was pretty cool.

  5. Doc
    November 21st, 2008 10:57

    I’m just excited that our new manager apparently likes to crunch stats and is known for his pre-game preparation. Our new GM is getting everything off to a great start so far. We actually have a stats analysis department now!!!