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.
Here’s a pretty good way to finally break out of that turkey-induced Thanksgiving tryptophan coma.
It’s a compilation of the 10 longest home runs from the 2015 season, with MLB.com’s Statcast technology providing data along the path of each blast …
Jon Morosi of FOX Sports reports that the Tigers are in discussions with free agent starter Jordan Zimmermann. His sources have told him that the talks have become “serious”.
Zimmermann, 29, has a career 3.32 ERA across parts of seven seasons in the majors. He finished fifth in National League Cy Young Award balloting in 2014, finishing with a 2.66 ERA and a 182/29 K/BB ratio over 199 2/3 innings.
Among starters who have amassed at least 1,000 innings since 2009, only Cliff Lee, Dan Haren, Madison Bumgarner, and Zack Greinke have compiled a better strikeout-to-walk ratio than Zimmermann’s 4.09. While he doesn’t have the star power of other free agents such as Greinke or David Price, the Tigers would certainly improve their rotation by bringing him on board.
Having already added Jesse Chavez and J.A. Happ to the mix and re-signing Marco Estrada early in the offseason, Blue Jays interim GM Tony LaCava said the team will continue to pursue pitching upgrades, as Sportsnet’s Ben Nicholson-Smith reports. Nicholson-Smith added that LaCava declined to comment on free agent ace David Price. It is believed that the Jays will not pursue Price and other big-name free agent starting pitchers given their November activity.
The Jays re-signed Estrada to a two-year, $26 million deal on November 13, acquired Chavez from the Athletics in exchange for reliever Liam Hendriks on November 20 and signed Happ to a three-year, $36 million deal on Friday.
Nicholson-Smith notes in a column on Sportsnet that the Jays need to address the bullpen in particular. That is especially true after swapping Hendriks, who had a career-best 2.92 ERA out of the Jays’ bullpen in 2015, for a back-end starting pitcher.
Jon Heyman of CBS Sports spoke to an anonymous baseball executive, who said that Nationals closer Jonathan Papelbon is “untradeable”. The Nationals are hoping to trade both Papelbon and the man he displaced, Drew Storen.
Papelbon has a poor reputation in baseball, particularly after a dugout altercation with superstar outfielder Bryce Harper. Focusing strictly on what he does on the field, Papelbon still gets the job done. The 35-year-old finished the last season with a combined 2.13 ERA, 24 saves, and a 56/12 K/BB ratio over 63 1/3 innings between the Phillies and Nationals.
The Nationals owe Papelbon $11 million for the 2016 season.