When Matt Treanor took the locals to task for their lack of support for the Fish, Buster Olney characterized the Florida catcher’s words as “ill chosen”. Wonder what he’d make of Tuesday’s claims by the Miami Herald’s Greg Cote.
This might be the best story of any sport or year locally, in terms of one of our teams coming from so far down to turn a sour season special. Yet our reaction — our back to the parade, stifling a yawn — has been equal parts stupefying and embarrassing.
South Florida never has known Cinderella quite like this one in baseball spikes.
Teams 20 games under are supposed to quit, or slough on auto pilot through an interminable season that can’t end quickly enough. Teams once 20 games under are not supposed to find themselves in the thick of the NL wild-card race in September. Let alone teams this inexperienced. With this payroll. Or this little support, alas.
The Kid Marlins nearly are orphans, as plan after plan to build a new retractable-roof stadium stalls for lack of funds. Talking about 1899, wasn’t that when the club first started trying to get a new ballpark? Almost seems like it.
Support in the stands is no better, with Florida dead-last in attendance and no spike since the upturn that has seen the team 58-37 since late May. Talking about 1899, was that Monday’s crowd? The announced gate of 12,191 surely counted a slew of no-shows.
Yeah, the weather report called for afternoon rain that never came. Yeah, too, football fever sweeps in between Canes-Noles on Monday night and the King Dolphins opening in a few days.
Still. C’mon! Local TV ratings verify people do care, but coming out to the park might be nice. The hot Marlins commence a 10-game homestand with a legitimate playoff shot and 12K show up? The last men in uniform who got a welcome-home like this were Vietnam veterans.
While agreeing in part with Cote — the Marlins are working wonders with a $15 million payroll — it should be acknowledged that persons who actually pay real money for their baseball tickets in South Florida have watched two World Series titles followed by a pair of fire sales. The current owner flirts with Vegas and San Antonio and his idea of good p.r. is to openly squabble with the manager and employ a team president with a penis pump fetish. All things considered, 12K isn’t that bad.