The offseason – a time for teams to renew hopes and fans to look forward to seeing what improvements will be made. A time for making season ticket sales. A time for giving back to the community. The Marlins, right now, have a serious problem brewing – that is, if they are even willing to address it.
Joe Capozzi, of the Palm Beach Post, reported that only a handful of youngsters signed up for Tom Koehler’s Pitch for Relief baseball camp. The funds that were raised were supposed to go towards relieving the folks affected by Sandy. Koehler, who is from the New York area, wanted to give back and even enlisted Jeff Conine, Juan Pierre, and others to help out. He was worried that the event would have to be cancelled since only 5 registered. Suddenly, 25 more registered at the last minute and the show went on.
Is this a sign that the fans are reacting against all things Marlins, as Capozzi suggests? The “Twittersphere” has been alive with attempts at boycotts and protests at Marlins park, but nothing that has drummed up serious attention. Still, to only get 30 kids to come out to get instruction from the hometown team, despite the lack of major stars, still should have a larger anticipated crowd with Conine and Pierre available. It will be interesting to note the season ticket sales, and deals, that start to surface as the season moves on.
Perhaps the Marlins, aware of the severity of the situation, may feel inclined to make a move at the Winter Meetings. Jim Bowden, via Twitter and ESPN, has proclaimed a bold statement of his that the Marlins will sign a free agent but that it will be a short term deal with a no-trade clause. Who that would be remains to be seen and of course, this is very speculative but a move like that would help net back some faith in the front office and their desire to win. To not even show up for a charity, that only costs $50 at Marlins Park, and get hands-on instruction from MLB players, is dumbfounding.