That the Pirates own the best record in baseball is another indication that big spending alone is an unreliable predictor of success — which is not the same as saying that excuses chronic under-spending of the Loria-esque variety.
What the Marlins need is to reach a point of franchise maturity where fans trust that the club will spend what is necessary to keep its rising young stars rather than the constant debilitating turnover of talent.
Stanton could be a lost cause.
“It takes two,” club president David Samson reminded us, correctly.
Miami could make Stanton a market-competitive offer or even better, but if the player is determined to use free agency after the 2016 season to play on the West Coast, it would only be good business for Miami to trade him before then.
You cannot continue to not keep guys like Miguel Cabrera and Stanton, though. At some point you must commit to the future and stop torturing your fans with constant rudderless direction.
We’ll see if this owner begins to earn back the public trust with this newest wave of young talent.
Meantime, give the Marlins credit. Redmond and these players started the season 13-41, sub-abysmal, but are now winning some respectability back. Good for them.
“The team we thought we’d have, we’re just really putting it together now. Now we’re having some fun,” Redmond told me the other day. “It’s so great to see guys smile and enjoy it. You walk in a 1 o’clock now and the music’s on and guys are having fun and you can feel that confidence. It’s great just to see the guys shaking hands again after games.”
The best little moment of this Marlins resurgence, the one that sticks with Redmond, came three weeks ago in New York. You remember that marathon 20-inning win over the Mets? This was the very next night, when Miami won in 10 innings.
It was a moment Redmond didn’t see. He only heard it. Felt it.
The go-ahead run scored on an error, and over Redmond’s shoulder in the dugout bloomed a sudden sound. You’d have thought it was a playoff Game 7. The noise was the unfettered aural joy you hear from 11-year-olds playing for nothing but love of game.
“I remember hearing how excited guys were on the bench. Hearing that enthusiasm,” Redmond said. “I thought, ‘Man, this is it! This is what we’re talking about. This is what we’re going to get to.”
The Marlins seem to have a nucleus strong enough to make that happen, to win back lost fans and build a future.
But do they have an owner ready to commit to that nucleus and that future? The question won’t go away until Jeffrey Loria makes it.