While the Red Sox and Cardinals play in the World Series, it's the offseason for the rest of Major League Baseball. The offseason breeds optimism for next year, and when you're feeling optimistic, sometimes you say crazy things. Especially if you happen to be team president of the Miami Marlins.
Not only did David Samson say the Marlins won't lose 100 games again in 2014, but he went as far to say the Marlins will be playing in the postseason.
"I promise you this: We’re not going to lose 100 games next year, not close ... Look what the Red Sox did. They had the same record we did in ’12. They turned it around to be in the World Series in ’13. It’s time for us to do the same. That’s why we didn’t book that concert in October. Why would we ever book something when we should be and will be playing playoff games?"
Samson's right! The Marlins and Red Sox did have identical 69-93 records in 2012. And both teams fired their fiery, headline-grabbing managers. But Boston went out and signed Mike Napoli, Shane Victorino and David Ross. Miami traded everything that wasn't bolted down to Toronto and Samson couldn't name anyone the Marlins got back. Boston won 97 games this season. Miami won 62.
It seems unlikely, to say the least, that the Marlins will be able to add the pieces necessary to make a jump like Boston did. For one, the Marlins haven't had a winning season since 2009 and have lost 90 or more games for three straight years. They're on their seventh manager since '09, and if history holds, they'll be looking for the eighth this time next year when Mike Redmond can't live up to ridiculous expectations -- just like Joe Girardi, Fredi Gonzalez and everyone else that came before him. And then there's the matter of what happened the last time the Marlins fancied themselves contenders. Even Samson, tone-deaf and blind to the world outside of Miami as he is, has to realize that they're going to have a hell of a time getting anyone to sign with the Marlins as a free agent after what happened to Jose Reyes and Mark Buehrle.
Miami won't be the last team pointing to the Red Sox while claiming they'll also go worst-to-first, but there aren't many teams who will sound as insane as the Marlins do while making that assertion. At this point, even Houston has a better case than they do.
But hey, all the Red Sox had to do to contend again was fire Bobby Valentine, right? That's one of the narratives? Maybe the Marlins should try that next.
[South Florida Sun-Sentinel]