Contract the Marlins!
Marlins fans take in the sights on a typical game day.
It's Billy Marlin's birthday.
Fuck Billy Marlin. Contraction may no longer be in style, but now that the Tampa Bay Rays are tasting success I think it's time for the MLB to trim its sails in Florida and do the right thing for baseball: contract the Florida Marlins. Do their fans a favor and rid the world of the Fish. Time to admit that teal is not an appropriate color for a major league baseball team, field sobriety tests not the challenges that MLB player's should be rising to, and firesales are not a legitimate strategy for operating a franchise. McDonald's doesn't let anyone serve RatBurgers (at least pure rat), why should MLB let the Marlins sell baseball?
The author poses with his new catch, and a big dead fish.
The two main functions of the Marlins--their position as top farm club for the rest of MLB, and their eminently funny and poetically appropriate names ("That play was Uggla," "And he Cantu make the play")--are no longer enough to justify this club's continued existence. And, let's face it, the Marlins aren't "contenders," they are just fucking up the field for the Dolphins.
This week I have been making the case which I present in full for you today, arguing for the contraction of the boorish, malcontent, infantile AAAA franchise Florida Marlins. This is a half-assed franchise, and some of their young players deserve better than to be treated as merchandise in a discount shoe store. Others at least deserve to be sharing a bunk with Elijah Dukes in the NL East's premier holding tank for criminal ballplayers. Any random success the franchise has is yet another black mark on baseball, as you can intuit by reading the writeup Baseball Prospectus 2008 (pp.184-7) offers about the dark history of the Marlin's scummy, Yankee minority stakeholder stained ownership.
They play on a football field with no roof in South Florida!!
They have employed Al Leiter and Paul LoDuca... twice!
They owe their history to former Yankees owners!
Today's Mets beatdown couldn't have happened to a nicer guy. Pitcher Scott Olsen is the face of the Marlin's franchise: a true asshole, known for physical confrontations with teammates, flipping off fans (how did he find any?), drunk driving, being tasered by police, and other things that asswipes do. The guy, like many of his teammates, is a cocky, emotionally damaged dickbag and as such, gets some coverage by espn:
The bad behavior was affecting his teammates. On the field, Olsen was gaining a reputation as a cocky guy who thought he scared opponents, when in actuality all he did was motivate them more to beat him. He once called out Phillies second baseman Chase Utley in a game, invoking the wrath of Utley and his teammates.
The wrath of Utley? Heavens.
Why is this team of punks--children of Miguel Cabrerra all of them-- so personally offensive to me? you might wonder. Let's look at some handy evidence from this series. Calling time in the middle of a pitchers wind-up, and then bitching about it when the ump ignores you. Running out to inflame a brawl when your name is Mike Jacobs and you owe Pedro Martinez and the the Mets your professional career. Waging a personal campaign to dishonor the position of second baseman. These are all in a day's work for the Fish.
To be honest, my campaign takes extra motivation from having to endure the idiocy of the Marlins broadcasters, in fact the Marlins would just be another 3rd division team below my radar without exposure to these tools. Is anyone else watching FSN Florida? The so-called "Extra Innings" (cable) package drives me nuts with their hometeam broadcast non-sense. Instead of SNY, I continually get the Fish Feed, with their insufferable announcers and high-school level camera operators. The dipshits in front of the microphones sputter inanities until the pit grows in my stomach and I have to turn the volume off. But that still doesn't relieve the suffering since, at least once a game, I shit you not, the cameraman zooms out and loses the ball during a play, then scans the entire stadium looking for it!!! So it drives me insane that the Extra innings "chooses" the broadcast of a team with no fans when the Mets are a national team with a top notch broadcasting.
So I say contract the tools in the FSNMiami/Sun booth first. As I have often chronicled, the FSN Miami dopes give nicks to the most undeserving of ballplayers. "Jake" is their nickname for a career minor-leaguer who starts at first base. "Hammer" for a guy who has never topped 26 homers. Indeed.
[It may seem like a small complaint, but I am suffering emotional and psychological damage here. Is anyone else in this boat? Can I start a petition drive? Do I have grounds for a lawsuit? I am interested in hearing what any baseball fans with legal backgrounds or organizing experience have to say.]
I honestly don't know how the Marlin's handful of fans stand supporting this team. I am really fascinated by the idea that the Fish have any fans at all. It must be tough.
Cody Ross, former rodeo clown, current MLB clown.
That Cody Ross episode yesterday was symbolic of the teamwide lack of class and small-man syndrome. There is no way to imagine that Pelfrey was trying to hit Ross, yet Ross started barking at him like he was more than a journeyman with a large babyhead who used to be a rodeo clown. (Click that link--Cody Ross has his own fan sight!! Unbelievable, I guess people in Florida don't all do meth or follow Nascar as a hobby) Worse, Mike Jacobs, who literally owes the Mets his big league career, was out there acting tough. The Marlins pull this stuff every year late in the season: remember Olivo's pointless overreaction last season? How can anyone root for these guys?
The Marlins team is filled with malcontents and immature punks with no respect for the game (Ross, Ramirez, Olsen, etc.) who are embarrassments to baseball (Uggla). Though he was in decline, the Fish signalled their commitment to becoming the Nationals of the NL East South by getting rid of Dontrelle Willis, the team's one shining hope to have a respectable posterboy. What's worse, even though management dealt All-Star Fat Lazy Slug Miguel Cabrera in a lopsided deal partially in an effort to try to deal with the bad karma (how else to explain this move?), this team's culture seems to be feeding on itself. If you're a young player with no positive example and no one to look up to (other than say, steroid freaks like Paul LoDuca, Pudge Rodrigez, or Luis Gonzalez), you can't possibly be expected to become a good citizen. How can you build your character when Scott Olsen is always calling you for bail money??
To summarize, the Fish suck and need to be contracted. And, in the end, Marlins fans might appreciate this more than anybody else--they have to listen to what can charitably be called the worst TV broadcast team in all of baseball, their management trades away any and all marquee players, and their owners don't care a wit about them. Even the cameramen on FSN are incompetent!! Finally, I read the Marlins are toying with raising ticket prices on the few fans they have!!!
I'm a Metsfan so I know something about suffering, but I can barely endure watching the few games with the Marlins that I must every year. Anyway it was fun beating them today.