It’s tough to be a fan of the Miami Marlins these days. Giancarlo Stanton is the only star on the roster, and the Marlins still may trade him sooner rather than later. The new stadium is a bit of an eyesore. Upper management is aloof, threatening to sue season ticket-holders and banning protesters.
After drawing over 34,000 for the home opener against the Braves on Monday, the Marlins have averaged barely above 15,000 in the three games since and it’s a trend that is expected to carry on through the season. In an attempt to get fans to the ballpark any way possible, the Marlins are introducing a very interesting promotion. Via Fish Stripes:
On Thursdays anyone over the age of 55 can attend a Marlins game for free, and in the “best available” section. Others can get discounts on tickets by visiting sponsors like Subway and Chevron to get the proper coupon for cheaper seating.
Thursdays at Marlins Park may be the only time when the average age of the fans in attendance are more than three times older than the average age of the home team’s roster.
Giants ace left-hander Madison Bumgarner has been diagnosed with a fractured left hand, per a report from Henry Schulman of the San Francisco Chronicle. He’ll undergo surgery on Saturday to insert pins in his pinky knuckle, adds The Athletic’s Andrew Baggarly, and is expected miss anywhere from 4-6 weeks in recovery before he’s cleared to throw again. In a best-case scenario, the lefty will be ready to pitch again before the All-Star break, but nothing is set in stone just yet.
Bumgarner suffered the fracture during the third inning of Friday’s Cactus League game against the Royals. Whit Merrifield returned a line drive up the middle and the ball deflected off the top of Bumgarner’s pitching hand before bouncing into the infield. He chased after the ball but was unable to pick it up, and was immediately visited by manager Bruce Bochy and a team trainer before exiting the game.
The 28-year-old southpaw was gearing up for a massive comeback after losing significant playing time with an injury in 2017. During his tumultuous run with the Giants last year, he missed nearly three months on the disabled list after spraining his shoulder and bruising his ribs in a dirt bike accident. He finished the season with a 4-9 record in 17 starts and a 3.32 ERA (his first 3.00+ ERA since 2012), 1.6 BB/9 and 8.2 SO/9 over 111 innings. The Giants suffered as well; by season’s end, their pitching staff ranked seventh-worst in the National League with a cumulative 4.58 ERA and 10.1 fWAR.
This is the second massive injury the Giants’ rotation has sustained this week after right-hander Jeff Samardzija was diagnosed with a strained pectoral muscle on Thursday. “Horrible news for us,” Bochy told reporters after Friday’s game. “That’s all you can say about it. There’s nothing you can do but push on.”