Originally posted on NESN.com  |  Last updated 4/26/13

BRONX, NY - OCTOBER 19: Florida Marlins owner Jeffrey Loria watches from the seats as his team takes on the New York Yankees in game 2 of the Major League Baseball World Series on October 19, 2003 at Yankee Stadium in the Bronx, New York. (Photo by Brian Bahr/Getty Images)
There may be no man in baseball more roundly hated by fans, players and team personnel than Miami Marlins owner Jeffrey Loria. Not only has the team’s miserable production on the field (5-17 as of Friday, the worst mark in the majors) caused fans to avoid state-of-the-art Marlins Park like the plague, Loria’s seeming desire to control every aspect of his organization is continuing to cause problems in the clubhouse. In the latest instance of micromanagement, Yahoo! Sports’ Jeff Passan cites multiple sources saying that Loria forced first-year manager Mike Redmond to start rookie Jose Fernandez in the first game of Tuesday’s doubleheader in Minnesota rather than Ricky Nolasco – the team’s highest-paid player — in order to allow the top prospect to pitch in warmer temperatures. It actually ended being colder for Fernandez’s start (38 degrees) than for Nolasco’s a few hours later (42 degrees), but Loria’s decree was reportedly not received well in the Marlins locker room regardless. When a team plays twice in one day, it is usually customary to allow the more veteran player to choose which game he would like to start. Redmond insisted that the move was “an organizational choice,” but his players seemed to believe that the call came from up top. “He was embarrassed,” one of Passan’s sources said of the manager. “He tried to fight it. He had nothing to do with it.” Over the offseason, Loria made a bad team worse by jettisoning Jose Reyes, Mark Buehrle and Josh Johnson — all former All-Stars — to Toronto in a move that was viewed by most as nothing more than a salary dump. The team, which finished last in the NL East in 2012, has struggled in every area since the trade, ranking dead last (30th) in the majors in runs and team batting average and 27th in team ERA. A promising farm system is one of the few bright spots in an otherwise floundering Marlins organization. Fernandez, who is ranked as the team’s No. 1 prospect by MLB.com and Baseball America, is at the forefront of that youth movement, and two players from the Toronto trade (outfielder Jake Marisnick and left-hander Justin Nicolino) are expected to get their shot at the majors before the end of next season.

This article first appeared on NESN.com and was syndicated with permission.

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