The Miami Marlins ran into an ugly situation when Tino Martinez resigned due to allegations of player abuse. Initially, it sounded as though it was Martinez's insistence on using harsh mannerisms in dealing with Marlins players, but Juan C. Rodriguez of the Sun-Sentinel reports that he was having difficulties with more than just the players.
A source confirmed Martinez for months had been at odds with several players and staff members, including manager Mike Redmond. It recently came to Redmond's attention that Martinez engaged rookie Derek Dietrich in an inappropriate physical manner less than a week after his arrival in the big leagues.
That makes the Martinez situation even worse than before. Now, not only was he supposedly being abusive towards some players, but he also was not endearing himself to the rest of the coaching staff. Most importantly, butting heads with manager Mike Redmond seems like a big strike against Martinez, as Redmond is the head of the staff and serves as something like his boss.
Apparently Redmond and Martinez got into verbal altercations with each other in the past and Redmond, having not made the choice to hire Martinez, was not happy with the hitting coach. According to Rodriguez's report, Redmond wanted Martinez out before the Derek Dietrich situation came up.
Martinez apologized and was genuinely sorry for his actions, but he did say that he felt as though he needed to be firmer with the players for a reason.
"I was frustrated at times the way players were behaving. When I asked them to do something they wouldn't do it. I thought the way to get them to do it was by being firm with them. I probably used some four-letter words. I thought I was doing the right thing, but I obviously wasn't."
Martinez felt the players were tuning him out, and perhaps that was true. Of course, that might have been true because so many players were turned off by Martinez's attitude. I am a 26-year-old man and when other adults yell at me to comply with their orders, I am much less likely to listen than I am to let those remarks go in one ear and out the other. These players are either older than me or not much younger, and I am certain they felt the same way about Martinez's demands. As they say, you catch more flies with honey than vinegar.
Martinez's escapades go beyond just the Dietrich situation. Other players like Matt Downs, Justin Ruggiano, Chris Valaika, and Casey Kotchman were involved in incidents with the former hitting coach. He even supposedly challenged Kotchman to a fistfight. That is a veteran in his 11th year in the league, and Martinez is attempting to get information through to him via threatening and intimidation. There is no surprise that the Marlins did not listen to him as he described above.
Redmond got his wish to have Martinez ousted, but you have to wonder if why owner Jeffrey Loria supposedly initially hesitated to send Martinez away. As mentioned before, he was just the hitting coach and not a well-payed manager like Ozzie Guillen was last season. He also did something far more unconscionable than Guillen did last year. But then again, Martinez was Loria's selection to the team, and one has to figure that played in a role in Loria's initial desire to work on "other options," as Martinez put it.
Nevertheless, the right decision was ultimately made and Martinez is no longer a member of the Miami Marlins staff. His run is going to be highlighted by incidents of inappropriate behavior and being at odds with his manager, two things that will definitely not help him get another Major League job,