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Fan support for Don Mattingly drops below 50% during Marlins free fall

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There’s a growing faction of the Marlins fanbase identifying Mattingly as a weak link in the franchise’s otherwise solid long-term rebuilding plan.

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Photo by Danis Sosa/Fish Stripes

Welcome to SB Nation FanPulse, a survey of fans across MLB. Each week, we send 30 polls to plugged in fans from each team. Marlins fans, sign up HERE to join FanPulse.

There have not been too many glaring mistakes from Don Mattingly this season—just a series of microaggressions that suggest he’s an awkward fit for the Marlins managerial job moving forward.

Bouncing Lewis Brinson all around the batting order. Using Wei-Yin Chen in various situations without communicating his specific fit on the pitching staff. Abandoning small-ball fundamentals despite playing home games in cavernous Marlins Park.

Most participants in our regular FanPulse group have gradually changed their tune. Mattingly, who earned 86% approval from fans on Opening Day, is now receiving just half of that support (43%) as of Monday’s survey.

Overall confidence in the Fish franchise remains relatively strong. About 73% like the direction of the team, comparable to the 75% who selected that option last week. Extraordinary individual efforts from top prospects might be influencing that sentiment.

The Marlins are in the minority of teams that have not proactively hammered out contract extensions with their long-term building blocks in recent months. (Of course, you would be hard-pressed to identify more than a couple surefire building blocks to even consider at the moment.)

More than two-thirds of you (68.7%) believe such commitments—examples include Ozzie Albies and Ronald Acuña Jr. (Braves)—are smart gambles for a front office:

Maybe Jorge Alfaro will emerge as a candidate for that if he can continue swinging the bat like this?


Thanks to everybody who has been participating in Fish Stripes FanPulse. Of course, we’re still glad to accept more sign-ups (remember to check your email, including the spam folder).