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Why Mariners fans aren't happy with the team's front office

Seattle Mariners
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Jason M Burrows for KUOW

If there’s one thing any longtime Mariners fan knows, it’s how to get your hopes up — then see them crushed by the end of the season, like so many empty beer cans under the seats at T-Mobile Park.

And then, usually, spring rolls around and that hope comes right back with it.

But right now, some Mariners fans may be losing that faith over a series of offseason moves by the team's front office.

This past weekend, Mariners president of baseball operations Jerry Dipoto traded away outfielder Jarred Kelenic, along with pitcher Marco Gonzales, first baseman Evan White, and $4.5 million to the Atlanta Braves for some right handed pitching.

The trade also comes on the heels of sending Eugenio Suárez to the Arizona Diamondbacks.

M’s fans are not happy about this. We asked for voicemails, and they delivered.

"I am a long suffering in native, significant psychological help, Mariners fan," said one caller. "I need Jerry Dipoto to throw me a frickin' bone."

One caller from Puyallup added, "Wishful thinking is dangerous, but that's kind of where we're at. Hopes shot up just to get shut down. So mariners fans out there, get your hopes up. But prepare for the worst, please."

And finally, a plea to the front office: "John Stanton, Jerry Dipoto — Prove me wrong. Please tell me that you're building towards something big here, and you're not just trying to line your pockets. John, please, please."

That final plea is heartbreaking, but par for the course for Mariners fans. After suffering through a 21-year playoff drought, only to miss the post-season again this year, feelings are mixed, to say the least.

Lookout Landing editor-in-chief Kate Preusser feels that pain.

"I think it came as a surprise. The comments that both Dipoto and Servais made at the winter meetings seem to indicate that they had less payroll to work with," Preusser said. "It always comes back to ownership and what their plan is because Dipoto can only execute with what he's been given."

And even if the President of Baseball Operations does have a plan, without the money to fund it, things won't work out.

"Yeah, it's really frustrating," Preusser said. "Because when you think about it, you're not just competing against the other teams that are out there. You're not competing against like Corey Seager in the Rangers — you're competing owner versus owner."

On the flip side, Preusser said that maybe it's time to stop looking at Dipoto as the enemy.

"He definitely does and says things that annoy me deeply," she said. "But he will, I believe, construct the best team that he can because at the end of the day, he wants to win."

And as for the hope that many fans have of landing the elusive Shohei Ohtani?

"I've never done a backflip in my life, but I think that I would," Preusser said.

Listen to Soundside’s full conversation with Lookout Landing editor-in-chief Kate Preusser by clicking the play icon at the top of this story.

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