One of the more entertaining subplots (if in a depressing way) of the MLB offseason revolved around the continuing righteous anger of Marlins fans, first at their team for having a terrible season, then at trading away almost every good player as the team embarked on yet another rebuilding project. Well, fans, Marlins owner Jeffrey Loria has heard your anger, and he wants to assure you that… he doesn’t deserve it.
Loria took out a full-page ad in the three biggest newspapers in South Florida, and while he admitted the team’s “performance on the field stunk” and that “the buck stops with me,” mostly it was an exercise in lashing out at what he felt was unjust criticism. Criticism about the latest Marlins fire sale, criticism about public financing of the Marlins’ stadium – Loria took it all on, and others have already responded to the substance of his claims.
Specifically on the stadium money issue: yes, (much of) the money’s coming from hotel taxes levied on out-of-towners, but as others have pointed out… well, that money could have potentially gone to other areas of need, were there not an expensive stadium to pay off. And while standing pat after a terrible season wasn’t a good option, there had to be some middle ground between that and “trading away everyone of some value except Giancarlo Stanton, giving the appearance that the Marlins roster is in a never-ending state of upheaval.” So… what did Marlins fans think of Loria’s ad? Let’s go back to the team’s Facebook page for our answer. Under a photo of Logan Morrison (No. 5):
And under another recent post:
While there were some fans who expressed more optimism than the ones seen above, overall there is no doubt: Marlins fans remain baseball’s most disgruntled. And as long as the owner continues to claim he takes responsibility for the team’s many failures and follows up by actually taking little to no responsibility at all, they’ll have no reason to be anything but.