To say that the 2012 season was a complete failure for the newly stocked and talented Miami Marlins would be putting it nicely. After revamping the club with a new stadium, fresh look, and complete roster upgrade, owner Jeffrey Loria gave fans something to be ecstatic about heading into last year's season. However, that all came to an end only days after the season began when news broke that the Marlins fiery manager, Ozzie Guillen, made remarks about his respect and admiration for Cuban dictator Fidel Castro. After an agonizing season under the controversial skipper, the departure of Hanley Ramirez, and a last place finish in the NL East, the Marlins community had good reason to believe that the off-season would be much kinder. They were quite wrong...
The off-season began just as dreadfully as the season did.
November 19, 2012-Commissioner Bud Selig approves a blockbuster deal between the Miami Marlins and Toronto Blue Jays that sends Josh Johnson, Jose Reyes, Mark Buehrle, Emilio Bonifacio, and John Buck packing. The mega deal came less than a calendar year after the Marlins organization committed nearly $200 million dollars to free agents in order to fill the seats of their brand new stadium that is costing the city of Miami millions. Winning only 69 games in 2012, 3 less than in 2011, this was not how the fans envisioned the future of this "revamped" organization.
After adding only a few everyday players so far, you can't expect the 2013 season to look much brighter than the last. The arrival of two Philadelphia FA's; Juan Pierre only provides speed at the top of an already power depleted order while Placido Polanco's bat is only getting slower. Even Giancarlo Stanton, the only bright spot in the Marlin's lineup has voiced his displeasure with the current state of his ball club... and can you blame him?
The pitching staff of the Marlins leaves much to be desired as well, led by Ricky Nolasco, the sole remaining starter from Opening Day 2012. The rest of the starting staff is consisted of young arms who are looking to prove themselves on a team that will not provide much run support. The bullpen, plagued by command issues and unofficial relieving roles, doesn't provide much hope either.
New skipper Mike Redmond will have his hands full and his patience tried with this group of misfits, so carelessly strung together by an owner who lacks credibility not only with the Miami community, but the MLB hierarchy. Fans are not happy, which is going to make motivation extremely hard to come by for this club. Count on Selig keeping a close eye on this club as it "moves forward."
I'm afraid the "fish" are already fried...
*Projected NL East finish: 5th
*Fantasy Standout: Giancarlo Stanton