The Marlins Win is not bad for baseball

Posted on 10/31/2003 in misc

Mike, of Mikes Baseball Rants, has a rather lengthy post up in which he concludes that the Marlins winning the Series was some sort of rip-off for baseball fans and in some way is bad for baseball.

I heartily disagree. And remember, I'm a Red Sox fan!

Mike complains that the "Marlins have no fan base."

Well, duh! They have existed for 11 years. It takes time, generations actually, to build the kind of rabid fan base enjoyed by the Yankees, Red Sox, or Cubs. It may not be possible to build that kind of fan base anymore. There are too many other entertainment options out there, and as been discussed here in the past, baseball is doing a really crappy job of getting kids interested in the game. The bottom line is that the Marlins have won 2 World Series in their 11 year history, which is exactly two more than Mike's SF Giants have won in the same time frame, or exactly two more than the Red Sox have won in my lifetime.

He continues, "So we baseball fans are left with the another Mighty Ducks of a world champion. I feel bad for teams like the A's, Red Sox, and Mariners, who have been building competitive teams for years and have nothing to show for it. The Marlins catch lightning in a bottle and like a fourth-place Smyth Division qualifier eke out series win after series win."

Uh, nobody promised me anything. Winning the World Series is based on first getting there, and then outplaying the other team there with you. There are no bonus runs or extra outs awarded the teams that did better during the regular season. Regular season performance doesn't matter in October, October performance matters in October. The Marlins earned their World Series rings the old fashioned way, they won 4 games first.

He ends with, "However, I argue that we deserve better as fans. After a great postseason, the World Series showed great promise but ultimately fizzled and we awake to the vision of the Marlins as champs, whose flaws will become clearer next season as the World Series beer goggles wear off. But by then we will have next year's one-year wonder to gawk at as it cantors through a World Series title."

I find this completely condescending and insulting to baseball fans everywhere. Fans of the old school teams with high payrolls have no right to post season glory. The teams have to earn it in the field, in October. Marlins fans, however few of them there are, have just as much right to enjoy the game with their team winning as I or Mike does. Marlin fans are also true baseball fans, their teams relative lack of financial stability and large fan base in no way detracts from the significance of their victory. If anything, their victory is good for baseball. Now, Reds fans, Padres fans, Orioles fans all have hope. If the Marlins can pull a couple of unheralded minor leaguers out of their ass, mix in a couple of trading deadline veterans, and win it all, then maybe {insert your team here} can too.

One more thing, I happen to live with a die hard 9 year old Marlins fan. Nothing that brings that kind of joy to a 9 year old baseball fan is a bad thing.

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