The Marlins had over 35,000 people in their ballpark on Opening Day. And some of those 35,000 apparently faced traffic issues getting to the park and long lines at concession stands and poor service. As this has turned into talk radio fodder in Miami, Marlins president David Samson has decided that the best response to all of this is defensiveness.
He disputes the wait times people claim to have faced at concessions. He criticizes the routes they took to get to the stadium. He equates long lines at the ballpark with long lines at Disney World and tells fans, well, that’s what you signed up for. He then plugs MLB’s At Bat app and tells people to download it and order food with it. He also notes that even though he has amazing parking and amazing seats and Miami Heat games that he has to get to the arena early because of crowds, so Marlins fans should too.
I am 100% certain, given how people love to complain, that the worst horror stories about what happened at the ballpark called in to talk radio the other day were extreme examples and/or embellished to maximize suffering. People are just jerks like that. At the same time, I am pretty certain that a business owner who does not at least pretend to acknowledge that there were some problems and pretend to have some empathy for the customers is kind of a jerk.
Jon Morosi of MLB Network said yesterday that the Detroit Tigers and Chicago Cubs have been engaged in trade talks involving starting pitcher Justin Verlander and catcher Alex Avila. Morosi also noted that the Los Angeles Dodgers have shown interest in Verlander as well. Whether this is idyl chitchatting of serious dispute is unclear, of course. Everything is unclear in the leadup to the deadline.
The veteran right-hander is carrying a 4.50 with a 120/57 K/BB ratio over 124 innings. Verlander impressed last year, finishing second in AL Cy Young Award balloting, but he has fallen back to Earth in 2017. His velocity remains high, however, and it’s not hard to imagine him going on a solid run in a way that could help a contender. He is owed $56 million over the next two seasons, however, and has a $22 million option that could vest for 2020, so negotiations for him could be tough. If the Tigers want talent back, they’ll have to eat salary.
Verlander got an ovation from a Detroit crowd last night which seemed to sense that, yes, it’s possible he pitched his last game for the Tigers. Given that he has 10/5 rights, allowing him to veto any trade, that decision is ultimately up to him. It’s not hard to imagine him accepting a trade to a contender, however.
We wait see.
The Dodgers beat the Twins last night thanks to a Cody Bellinger three-run homer. But Bellinger was not the only Dodgers rookie who had a notable game. A far more unconventional one is worth mentioning as well.
That rookie is reliever Edward Paredes, who made his big league debut last night. What makes him unconventional: he’s 30. Turns 31 in September, actually. Paredes pitched professionally for 12 years before making it to The Show. Most of that time was in the affiliated minors in the Mariners, Indians, Angels and Dodgers organizations. He spent time in the independent Atlantic League in 2013-15 as well.
Paredes did not do anything heroic last night. It was more of a right place/right time kind of appearance, retiring the side in order with a fly out, line out and a ground out and remaining the pitcher of record while Bellinger hit that three-run homer. That’s enough for a W, though. A W that Paredes waited a lot longer for than most pitchers who notch one in the bigs.