by Tommy Gimler
Other than trying to figure out where this rash on my left ass cheek came from, the burning question I have this morning is, “How in the hell is Jeffrey Loria still affiliated with Major League Baseball?
One day after most media outlets reported the Marlins’ owner unloaded every piece of talent remaining on his roster with the exception of Giancarlo Stanton, Loria refused to speak with reporters, probably so he could prepare a more well-thought yet bigger bull shit statement than this:
By now, you’ve seen or heard the names. Reyes, Johnson, Buehrle, Buck, and Bonifacio for seven guys who might be baseball players or one of the crippled Hispanic kids struggling to bag my groceries at Ralph’s. In the end, it just adds up to Marlins’ ownership once again gutting their payroll to a Lara Flynn Boyle-esque $20.2 million (minus those players up for salary arbitration).
Yup folks, Jeffrey Loria is a disgusting human being, one who is both physically and emotionally challenged. Basically, here’s a guy who’s been the subject of an SEC investigation for fraudulent claims that the team needed taxpayer dollars to fund a new $634 million stadium that will now sit empty for the next six or seven years before he decides that a few of his acquired prospects have enough talent that warrants a spike in payroll for at least half of a season to make a run at the World Series only to sell off all of those players in the following offseason to get right back to where we are today.
But unlike when he pulled this shit show in 2003, this time, people are pissed. Players are livid:
Alright, I’m pissed off!!! Plain & Simple - Marlins OF Giancarlo Stanton via Twitter
From Yahoo! Sports to the usually mild-mannered Ken Rosenthal at Fox Sports, sportswriters across the country are calling for Loria’s dome on this one. Deadspin couldn’t have put it any better:
Here is what has happened in the last year of the Miami Marlins, formerly d/b/a Florida Marlins: They swindled the citizens of Miami for a new stadium and drew the SEC’s notice. They filched Jose Reyes from a franchise that has actual fans but no money and a municipal government that refuses to be robbed blind. They threw money at Heath Bell, Mark Buehrle, and Albert Pujols, and two of the three took it. They got fish installed behind home plate. Their president called Miamians stupid.They installed a wack-ass home run sculpture. Their snobbish owner blabbed about Joan Miro.Their owner then trotted out a shaking Muhammad Ali to shield him from boos on opening night. Their owner then baked himself a fucking cake with jewels on it. Ozzie Guillen, whom they honest-to-god hired to manage their baseball team, said some crazy shit about Fidel Castro, which he does, from time to time. The Marlins then suspended him to placate area Cubans. The mollified Cubans still had no interest in going to see the Marlins, because they are the fucking Marlins. The team stank out of the gate, especially Heath Bell. They complained about not having any All-Stars. Showtime canceled its series about them because they sucked so much.John Buck flipped you off. Heath Bell and Ozzie Guillen got in a pissing match. No one came to the games. The extant fans were hilariously pissed off. The team ate $8 million to dump Heath Bell. They ate less to dump Ozzie Guillen. They replaced Ozzie with a guy who spends his leisure time naked. Then they traded Reyes, Josh Johnson, Emilio Bonifacio, Buck, and Buehrle to the Blue Jays. Giancarlo Stanton, their only remaining player of note, a young dynamo who deserves far better, says he’s pissed off. He should be. Fuck the Marlins.
I would say that Marlins fans are pissed, too, but there aren’t any. Nor should there be.
The saddest part is the one guy who baseball needs to be furious about this, isn’t.
Last year, Los Angeles Dodgers fans began to stay away from Dodger Stadium/Hell in droves to show their disgust with then-owner Frank McCourt refusing to put their money into talent on the field and instead using that cash to pay for his real estate holdings and divorce. Then, and rightfully so, Bud Selig and MLB stepped in, and eventually McCourt was forced out of Los Angeles. Well, by “forced out” I mean, “Thanks for ruining one of the most storied franchises in America. Now take your $2 billion and get the hell out of here.”
But where is the used-car dealership owner now? You could argue that the Miami situation is worse than Los Angeles. After all, this time it doesn’t only involve baseball fans, but all taxpayers in that area. Dodgers fans at least had a choice to stay away from the ballpark without any financial consequence to them. But duped Miami residents will continue to pay taxes on a stadium that will now sit empty even if they aren’t baseball fans, all while Jeffrey Loria, who knows how to manipulate the system better than anybody, continues to pocket millions from it without consequence. As a commissioner, if you were truly interested in creating even an inkling of support for a baseball team in South Florida, then wouldn’t you want to step in and finally put an end to this guy?
But the more I think about it, there’s a pretty good reason why Selig isn’t all over Loria like Kevin Spacey on an innocent male production assistant, and that’s because it’s the same way he (and eventually his daughter) ran the Milwaukee Brewers until 2005. Miller Park was created using taxpayer dollars only after state senator George Petak controversially changed his vote in favor of it. In 2001, more than 2.8 million fans came to watch the Brewers play shitty baseball, yet none of the revenue from the spike in attendance went into talent on the field. In fact, it would get worse. By 2003, in just it’s third year of existence, Miller Park would average less than 21,000 duped fans per game.
Whether it’s Los Angeles, New York, and now Miami, Bud Selig and MLB officials need to step in and not only make sure that owners aren’t manipulating fans’ and taxpayers’ dollars but also make sure that pieces of dog shit disguised as human beings like Jeffrey Loria never even make it to the owner’s box in the first place. At the same time, if the two dozen baseball fans that make up the Marlins fan base really want to see things change, then they need to make sure absolutely nobody goes to a Marlins game next year. Only then will you see either Selig or Loria or both make a change. To quote Bill Murray from Wild Things, “They’ll settle. They’ll be begging to settle…”