NL East Shaken Up: Part V – Florida Marlins

The Good:

Theres alot to be optimistic about in the Marlins organization. This team has three important aspects for building a winner–they are cheap, young, and skilled. Their starting pitching is very good and in a couple years could be the most dominant starting pitching in the majors. Ace Dontrelle Willis leads the staff, after an up and down 2006, supported by young pitchers Josh Johnson (12-7, 3.10 ERA, age 23-oopsy doodle), Anibal Sanchez (17-10, 2.83 ERA, no hitter, age 22), Scott Olsen (12-10, 4.10 ERA, age 23), and Ricky “Snacks” Nolasco (11-11, 24 years old). Their lineup proves to be young and talented as well, led by certified stud Miguel Cabrera (.339/.430/.568, .998 OPS, 26 HR, 114 RBI), Dan Uggla (.282, 27 HR’s, 90 RBI), Josh Willingham (.277 26 HR’s, 74 RBI), and speedster and reigning ROY Hanley Ramirez (.292, 51 SB). By the way, the average age of those players is 25.

The Bad:

With youth comes inconsistency, and a bad decision by management to get rid of Joe Girardi. The Marlins badly hamstrung themselves last year by getting out to an absolutely atrocious start, which ultimately proved to be their demise and finishing 4th with a record of 78-84. Joe Borowski jumped to the Indians after a solid year (36 saves). Can D-Train find his old dominant self? Will the rookies keep progressing?

The Bottom Line:

More than one player on this team smells like a sophomore slump. While the young players continue to develop, they will still make mistakes. Getting rid of Joe Girardi will prove to be a large error (Although I know one team rubbing their hands together). Look out for this squad in 2-3 years–if they find a closer, and get a bat for the bottom of the lineup, they will be a dangerous squad.

Prediction: 4th, 81-81.

This season ought to be a very interesting and exciting one for the NL East. The Mets have a lethal lineup while the Phils have lethal starting pitching, the Braves are in a mini-rebuild stage, the Marlins are going to be damn good in a few years, and the Nats are hilariously bad. In the recent weeks a mini-feud has developed between Mets and Phillies fans; actually its pretty much a one-sided feud. Mets fans are taking Jimmy Rollins’ prediction as a personal insult and have been bombarding sports talk shows, incapable of processing the fact the Phillies got better in the offseason while the Mets got worse (I live in North Jersey, at times its unbearable.) Who knows if he’s right? Whats important is there are some juices flowing and baseball is about to begin. Crack the beers, cook the hot dogs, and heckle the bullpen—Let’s play ball!

3 Responses

  1. It doesn’t help that Johnson is sitting out the next two months either.

  2. click the link

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