Happy Thanksgiving, Fish Stripers! Fish Stripes wants to wish you the best on this holiday weekend, and we want to assure you that we still will be publishing as much as we can in the next two days in order to provide the best coverage of the Marlins as possible.
For today, let's feast on what we should be thankful for in Miami. It is not much, but it is something to reflect on in our dark times as Marlins fans right now.
Giancarlo Stanton's final few years with the team: I believe Stanton should be signed to an extension, but I am not confident in the odds that that will happen. The Marlins have shuffled their feet for some time and now run the risk of having Stanton escape after three more seasons of expensive team control. So for now, let's be thankful for what little time we have left with the best young power hitter in baseball. Let's continue to enjoy his mammoth home runs and, just for today, forget the future. Let's take in some of Stanton's best from last season:
Everything Jose Fernandez: Fernandez had his own event to be thankful for, as he reunited with his grandmother for the first time since emigrating to the US at age 15. It was a touching, heartfelt moment for a guy who always wore his emotions on his sleeve. But Marlins fans have so much more to be thankful about with Fernandez, who could be the very best thing going on in Miami. Think back to all the wonderful moments of Fernandez's 2013 season, including this all-time favorite.
Christian Yelich's future: Marlins fans are going to be in for a treat with Christian Yelich in 2014. He is a perfectly designed hitter for Marlins Park, with a beautiful lefty swing, gap power to all fields, and great speed on the basepaths. Yelich is supposedly an excellent defender as well, and the Marlins will get their first full season look at him next year. We can lament on Stanton's excellent past while we still have him, and Fernandez's most recent year was amazing, but the future has things to be thankful for as well.
Marlins Park: Yes, it was a corrupt deal that earned the Marlins a shiny new $500 million-plus stadium. Yes, the leadership of Miami-Dade County is currently suffering the legal wrath of the stadium deal. And yes, so far business has not picked up in the surrounding areas of Little Havana. But Marlins Park itself is an excellent venue at which to watch baseball. The horrid conditions of Sun Life Stadium are long behind us, and I would gladly make the difficult trek to Little Havana to watch baseball at such a beautiful park. You can complain about the Monstrosity and the fences and the product on the field, but I am happy with the way Marlins Park turned out.
Prospects: The current Major League roster in Miami is pathetic, but the future is bright. Miami has a boatload of pitching prospects and finally has a third baseman of the future in first-round pick Colin Moran. Many of these players could be ready for the majors by 2015, so while next season may be harsh, the year after that represents the first season in which the Marlins should display some legitimate growth.
Happy Thanksgiving to everyone, and stay tuned for more at Fish Stripes!