April 01, 2008

Being a Marlins' Fan is NOT Easy!

I feel for Marlins' fans, having spent the first of two straight days amongst them, as they have watched the competitiveness of their ballclub being stripped away in front of their eyes, by an ownership group who seems more obsessed with recouping dollars lost from years ago then in trying to compete and put out a major league club day in, day out.

Dolphins' Stadium, as I wrote in "Opening Day Notes" is a lousy site to watch a ballgame from (and, apparently, to play one in as well) and the Dolphins hover loudly over everything else in the stadium. The Marlins are going to play in a new, state-of-the-art facility, (allegedly, because there's ALWAYS a chance in Florida that something could end up going wrong, but I've been told there's a 95%+ chance of it happening) but have told fans that, until they are able to generate the kind of revenues that accompany new stadiums, their payroll level will continue to remain at, or near, the bottom of the game. And yet, the Marlins seem to be the most profitable team in MLB, hauling in over $20 million in revenue sharing, another $20+ million in television rights fees, not to mention merchandising, internet revenue, and, oh yeah, that little old thing called "revenues generated by fans purchasing tickets, hot dogs, parking and jerseys"!!!! If the Mets, or any other big market team attempted such a travesty, claiming poverty while hauling in tens of millions, we'd all be staying away in droves and the owners wouldn't be burned in effigy, they'd just be burned, period! But Marlins' owner Jeffrey Loria and President David Samson plead as if they are mere paupers, but paupers who still care about their fans- and the check is already in the mail, right?!

Do you realize that Carlos Beltran, the Mets' first baseman, is owed more this year ($4 million) by the Marlins than they owe any of their OWN players?! Their total payroll is less than $21 million, or a bit less than Santana's contract will average over the next seven years!!!!

The Sun-Sentinel, a Miami-Fort Lauderdale-area paper (owned by the same group that owns Newsday) has offered pretty fair coverage of what it means to be a Marlins' fan, and one of the better columns on this subject came out yesterday, by columnist Dave Hyde, which you can read by clicking here.

From Hyde:
The Marlins got $600 million in public money for a new stadium and amenities. They can't just brush the subject of their embarrassing payroll under the carpet anymore and hope no one notices. As much as they want to, they can't just keep saying, "This is all we can afford until we get our new stadium."

So, the next time you wish to complain about anything Mets-related, remember the plight of your Floridian brethren, and just be grateful that Fred & Jeff Wilpon will NEVER let this happen to their organization! CITI-FIELD, HERE WE COME!!!!


Anonymous said...

man did the met fans take over that stadium or what???

Danny said...

how was the game guys