Salt Lake Buzz general manager Tammy Felker-White, who oversaw the triple-A baseball franchise's move from Portland to Utah in 1994, stepped down from her position in a surprise move Saturday citing "job related stress."
"When you wake up in the morning and dread going to work it's time to do something else," said Felker-White. "I'm just 31-years-old and I'm downing a roll of Maalox a day. That's not right."Felker-White relinquished her title as executive vice president and general manager. She will, however, remain with the club in a management role rather than as an executive for the time being. She was one of only a handful of female general managers in all of baseball, a fact that added pressure to an already stress-filled job.
"The general public would not treat a man like they treated me - that's the bottom line," said Felker-White, who became a AAA general manager five years ago for the Portland Beavers, the team that later became the Buzz. "I've talked to Joe and my husband and other members of the front office staff about it - all of whom were men - and I told them, `until you walk a mile in my shoes, you will never understand what a woman in an executive position goes through.' " Felker-White will remain on the Buzz staff and handle many of the same responsibilities as she has in the past, at least for now.
"I'm only staying out of loyalty to Joe," she said. "With the Triple-A All-Star Game coming up (at Franklin Quest Field, July 10) it would not be fair to the other eight members of the staff to get up and walk out. I'll be here through the all-star game, but after that I'm making no promises."
Buzas will temporarily fill the general manager duties himself. He said he doesn't plan to announce a permanent replacement until after the season is over. A top candidate for the job is Gerry Berthiaume, who is presently the general manager of the New Britian Rock Cats, an AA team Buzas owns.
"Being a woman in a baseball world is tough," Buzas said. "People will come in and think she's the secretary or something. But she's been indispensable to me. Without her we wouldn't have been successful. She's always handled herself professionally and done a great job."
In other Buzz news, right-handed pitcher Mike Misuraca was traded to the Milwaukee Brewers Saturday. The trade completes an off-season deal that sent shortstop Tom Nevers from the Brewers to the Twins organization. Nevers is playing in AA New Britain. Misuraca, who spent all of the 1995 season in Salt Lake and part of '94, was 1-2 this season with a 6.27 ERA.