by John Furgele
The Florida Marlins are in their 16th season of Major League Baseball. They have never won a division title, but they have made the playoffs twice, won two National League pennants and two World Series championships. In fact, they have never lost a postseason series, going 6-0 in the best of five and best of seven formats that are the baseball playoffs.
The Marlins won their first world championship in 1997, then six years later, won again in 2003. In between, they went 54-108 (1998) and overhauled the roster several times. They are lucky to draw 10,000 fans on a weeknight, but every five to six years, they seem to win a world title.
Many fans of other teams laugh at the Marlins, blast the Marlins, say the Marlins are bad for baseball. Some of these fans root for Philadelphia, New York (Mets), Cleveland and San Francisco I see and hear sportscasters critize the Marlins all the time, saying that they are a Mickey Mouse organization.
But, let’s think about it Met fans. The Mets have been playing National League baseball since 1962 and like the Marlins, have won two world championships. The Mets have not won a title since the famous and overblown 1986 season, just a mere 22 years ago. The Mets; two titles in 47 seasons, the Marlins two in 15. Advantage: Marlins.
Let’s now go to Philadelphia: The Phillies are the second oldest team in baseball behind Cincinnati. They have one world championship—in 1980–and last year was the first year they made the playoffs since 1993, the first year of the Marlins. Advantage: Marlins.
To Cleveland we go: The Tribe has not won a title since before rock and roll took off—1948. And, just for nice, the Marlins beat them for their 1997 title. Big advantage: Marlins
San Francisco may be a world class city, but in baseball circles, they are sorry. The last time the Giants won a World Series was in 1954, when they were called the New York Giants, had Willie Mays and played in the Polo Grounds. And, just for nice, the Marlins beat the Giants in both the 1997 and 2003 Division Series en route to their world titles. Advantage: Marlins, in a cakewalk.
Today, the Marlins are 22-14 and sitting in first place in the National League East. It’s been five years since they last made the playoffs and won a World Series, so it’s about time they make another run. And, just for nice, they just signed Hanley Ramirez to a six year, $70 million contract and in 2011 will move to a new stadium and change their name to the Miami Marlins.
You might want to book hotel reservations in Miami this October because the Marlins (certainly not the Dolphins) just might have some important games to play during that time.