The promise was to be more transparent to the fans and to be more verbal about the direction of their team. Yet, it seems as though the Marlins operate as though pleasing their fan base is incidental to the success of their team.
I attended Opening Night against the Braves and was on the lookout for any protests or animosity expressed by fans. I was going to tweet about it throughout the game, but for some reason Twitter was not working while at the game. So, I just took it in and was surprised at how sterile the night was. Sure, the team only amassed 2 hits, but no one seemed to show must frustration about it or raise any concerns about how the team traded away its offensive talent. After all, John Buck mysteriously has almost as many RBIs on his own this year as the entire Marlins team does. (Where was that guy over the last few years?)
The concession lines were extremely long and unrelenting, to the point it wasn’t worth even going to get any food. The nachos that I usually love didn’t have much sauce on them and had been siting for a bit. These were things that seemed to take a step in the wrong direction from last season, but nothing too crazy or unfixable. Other than that, not real problems or fans raising ruckus.
Turns out the Marlins were keeping an eye out for that sort of thing and eliminated any threats before these targets could get planted in the game. Fans over at Rage Against the Marlins came to the came to voice their dissidence and were thrown out of the game before, they claim, they were able to get to their seats.
Dave Hyde writes about it over at the Sun-Sentinel. Joe Capozzi at the Palm-Beach Post also wrote about it. In fact, this video was uploaded by Joe Capozzi and Dave Hyde makes a brief cameo at the end and seems to like the shirts the guys were wearing.
Maybe this is why I didn’t see any protestors? As red hot as fans were (and are) you’d think there would have been more at the game. Then again, why would you pay for tickets only to protest? It would seem that such a position would keep you from contributing anything financially to the regime you loathe. There was a tweet about some protests outside the park, but for the most part the response was why would someone protest yet buy tickets?
It will be interesting to see if any of this gains traction and pressure can be mounted on the Marlins ownership. There is a very strong argument being raised that no matter how Loria or David Samson spin this, there is going to emerge a jilted fan base. Will they be able to organize and do something productive? That remains to be seen and something we’ll keep an eye on.