The Miami Herald took a survey last week of 400 different Marlins season-ticket holders in the hope of getting a feel for how the fanbase is viewing the organization’s latest blatant firesale and that firesale’s primary architect, owner Jeffrey Loria.
You could probably guess without peeking what the results of that survey were going to look like, but they’re troubling to read through nonetheless:
• 87 percent of Marlins fans feel “furious and betrayed’’ by the team ownership.
• 83 percent of Marlins fans have an “unfavorable’’ opinion of Loria.
• 85 percent of Marlins fans feel the trade will benefit the Toronto Blue Jays more than the Marlins.
• 95 percent think the trade was a “firesale,’’ while only 4 percent think the trade intended to make the team better.
• 89 percent feel Loria has a moral obligation to field a good team because the new $515 million stadium was built largely with public funds.
Check out the full article for charts and written reactions from some of the fans that were polled.
“He got us to build him a stadium with taxpayer money,” wrote one season-ticket holder. “He lied to us and is not living up to his promises and he should sell the Marlins. He traded the players worth watching.’’
The Marlins drew only 2.2 million fans this summer, and it’s a safe bet they’ll back near 1.5 million in 2013.
When you promote a player from the minors, the first and foremost consideration is whether or not he can help your ball club. But, assuming that’s taken care of, teams should really, really make it a priority to call up dudes with cool sounding names because it makes life more interesting for the rest of us.
The Pirates are doing that. The other night Dovydas Neverauskas made his big league debut. In addition to being the first Lithuanian born-and-raised player in major league history, it’s a solid, solid name. Now the Pirates are making another promotion: Gift Ngoepe.
Yep, Gift Ngoepe. He’s an infielder from South Africa, making the leap to the bigs due to David Freese‘s hamstring injury. Ngoepe, 27, was batting just .241/.308/.379 through 66 plate appearances this season with Triple-A Indianapolis, his ninth in the minors, so he’s not exactly a prospect. But man, that’s a killer name.
It’s also worth mentioning that Gift and Neverauskas were arrested together in a bar fight last August in Toledo, so there is already a good basis for some bonding here.
Good luck, Gift. Gift Ngoepe. Mr. Ngoepe. G-Ngo. Man, I could do this all day.
The Rays beat the Orioles last night, but the play of the game belonged to an Oriole defender.
Evan Longoria was batting and he chopped a ball foul down the third base line. At least it started out foul. As we all know, however, it doesn’t matter where the ball starts, it matters where it is when it crosses the bag.
Manny Machado knows this and didn’t give up on the ball despite it starting several feet in foul territory. He watched it come back, stayed with it and threw out Longoria who, unlike Machado, did give up on it, assuming he’d merely get a strike and another hack. Watch:
Longoria would get Machado back, however, fielding a ball Machado smoked to third base in the ninth inning, recording the second to last out of the game.