The Marlins are all brand new. Its clear the organization has been waiting for this situation for awhile. New stadium, new name, new jersey, new manager, new players, and all in a new part of town. Trying to decipher which "new" is the most significant is not necessary. The fact there is a new ballpark is somewhat surreal considering all the work it took to make it happen. But one thing I do think is significant is which "new" can make the quickest impact. Below I want to share with you prior situations where there was either a new manager (via trade only), or a new ballpark, and the immediate record in the standings it produced for that team. The reason I am even bringing this up has to do with the fact the Marlins traded for manager Ozzie Guillen before the end of last season (they traded an infielder and a minor-leaguer to the White Sox). And the Marlins are moving into a new stadium this season after playing every season since its been in existence in the home stadium of the Miami Dolphins. Will these moves mean 90-100 wins?
New manager acquired via trade
Baseball has actually witnessed many trades involving managers in its history. There was once a trade between two teams that traded one manager for the other (Joe Gordon, Jimmy Dykes). However, for the following two trades; one situation worked out nicely, while a more recent trade did not lead to much the first year. Remember, I am only detailing this for win-loss record following the first season after the move.
Obviously a different set of circumstances, but one team had a much better outcome trading for a manager than the other team (record wise).
Immediate team record after moving to a new stadium
Petco Park (San Diego Padres) opens 2004 - Padres record that season: 87-75
Nationals Park (Washington Nationals) opens 2008 - Nats record that season: 69-93
Citi Field (New York Mets) opens 2009 - Mets go 79-83
Target Field (Minnesota Twins) opens 2010 - Twins finish with a great record, 94-68
Basically, the data does not support a consistent great record because of a new manager (via trade), or a new ballpark. Doesn't mean you can't have a great record for other reasons. I believe that the change that will make the quickest impact will be all the new players the Marlins signed (Bell, Reyes, Buehrle). After the chemistry is built of course.
The Marlins had many holes after last season (starting pitching, clutch hitting, closer), and they made moves during this past offseason to fill these holes. The best part is they may not be done (I'm sure Scott Boras is dying for the Marlins to get in on the Prince Fielder sweepstakes). The Guillen acquisition and the move to the new ballpark are terrific moves. But what will really make the difference is when Reyes pushes Ramirez to be better. And Heath Bell challenges the rest of the bullpen to pitch shut down. Or when Buehrle is the example Nolasco and Sanchez can follow to have consistent seasons. These changes will make for quick improvements.
So take it for what it is. With so much change and a number of "new" situations, this team cannot be compared to many others in baseball history. The Marlins are truly all brand new.
- Do you like the HBO series Hard Knocks? Get ready to see the Marlins in the baseball equivalent of this called The Franchise. Variety is reporting Showtime network and the Miami Marlins are close to an agreement that would allow the Marlins to follow in the steps of the San Francisco Giants. Brian Wilson and company was filmed since the beginning of spring training 2011, and it eventually led to eight episodes that aired last season. I'm sure manager Ozzie Guillen, LoMo, and David Samson will all be magnets for the cameras at all times.
- Join MarlinManiac and stop censorship of the Internet. If you agree, fill out the online petition.
- In case you missed it, Joe Capozzi in his weekly update mentions how Anibal Sanchez and Emilio Bonifacio are going to arbitration next month. Both should win their cases over the Marlins. However, Boni should be in line to receive a huge raise. After having a monster year, he only made $425,000.
- The Palm Beach Post also sends kudos to Logan Morrison. He raised more than $30,000 last week for the American Heart Association at his annual youth baseball camp. That doubles what he raised last year at the same event. Good job sir.
Around the League
- The biggest news Wednesday was the Texas Rangers and the locking up of Yu Darvish for six years. They came to an agreement right at the deadline. Had there been no deal, Yu would have headed back to Japan.
- 49 year old Jamie Moyer signs a minor league deal with the Colorado Rockies earlier this week. What in the world?! At least in Philly he had a great all around team behind him. Yikes will the ball fly off of opposing bats at Coors.
At Fish Stripes
- I agree with Michael when he writes the Marlins did not need to re-sign the reliever formerly known as Leo Nunez. The only way I like this move is if Miami ends up trading him to the Nationals for Tyler Clippard. Wait, did I just write that? Or was I dreaming it?