Results tagged ‘ Florida Marlins ’
by Craig Calcaterra of Hardball Talk
When I was a teenager working at the radio station, I made $3.35 an hour. That was a the minimum wage back then, and my employer was smart enough to realize that lots of kids would love my job, so there was no incentive to pay me any more than the minimum wage.
But then, one day, in early 1991, my boss came into the control room with a big smile on his face and said “Craig, I’m giving you a raise.” I was ecstatic. It was almost a whole dollar an hour more! I’d be making $4.25! When I got home after my shift and told my dad about it, he got a look on his face that was kind of like this, and said that they had to give me that raise because the minimum wage was going up to $4.25. I suddenly felt less special.
I’m guessing that many of the Miami Marlins who are not yet arbitration-eligible feel the same way right about now. Why? Ask Rosenthal and Morosi:
The minimum salary in the new collective-bargaining agreement increased from $414,000 to $480,000, giving even the lowest-paid players a handsome wage. Baseball’s economic system, however, allows clubs to otherwise determine the salaries of players in the 0-to-3-year service class almost unilaterally. The Miami Marlins, a team that spent lavishly on free agents this past offseason, are taking a particularly firm stand with those players, according to major-league sources.
The Marlins intend to automatically “renew” the contracts of virtually all their 0-to-3s at the new minimum, a move that might prompt the players’ union to file a grievance, contending that the team did not operate in good faith, sources say.
Typically, teams give moderate raises to those 0-3 players, putting them over the minimum salary. Do they have to? No. But so much in baseball is about respecting service time and seniority. Where your locker is. When you take your cuts in the cage. Where you sit on the plane or the bus. There’s an implicit understanding in baseball that, if you’re not a rookie, you get slightly better treatment than the rookies do.
That should, and typically does, extend to salaries too. A few thousand here or there is nothing to the Marlins. Giving their pre-arb players “raises” that only keep up with the minimum wage is treating them like they’re nothing as well. It’s bad form and I hope those cheapskates either change their mind about it or get all kinds of hell thrown at them by the union and the league.
UPDATE: Rosenthal has updated his story with a quote from former Marlin Cody Ross. He notes that this cheapskatery has a negative impact on the Marlins:
“That’s one of the main reasons I went to a hearing against them in my second year of arb,” said Boston Red Sox outfielder Cody Ross, who beat the Marlins in arbitration in 2010, receiving $4.45 million after the team offered $4.2 million.
“I never forgot about them not giving me a raise ever as a 0-to-3 player. I didn’t think it was fair for me to make the same as a guy who comes up from minor league camp and makes the team.”
So, sure, if you want to litigate arbitration cases because your players hate you, by all means Mr. Loria, continue this practice.
Source: Hardball Talk
The LoMo demotion continues to confound. The team tolerates Hanley Ramirez’s lack of work ethic, sit by as he dogs it on the field several times a year and look past the fact that he has produced (quite literally) half as much as Logan Morrison has this year, yet they demote LoMo for “lack of production”.
The Marlins’ front office isn’t saying much on the matter, and Logan Morrison kept his comments light on Twitter last evening. So we’re left only to wonder whether his demotion was performance-related or a punishment for an off-field incident.
Joe Capozzi of the Palm Beach Post seems to think it might have been a mixture of both.
Here’s a snippet of Capozzi’s Saturday evening article on the Marlins’ sudden and surprising decision to send the talented and productive 23-year-old outfielder back to Triple-A New Orleans. It seems to go beyond LoMo’s recent slump:
I might be able to clear up the “incident” LoMo referred to when he said he suspected his demotion was related to something off the field.
First, I was told by a person close to LoMo that the matter was not criminal related or even sordid.
Earlier in the day, he refused to participate in a photo session with season ticket holders at Sun Life Stadium. That might sound surprising, given Logan’s outgoing personality and popularity with fans, but apparently there were some hard feelings related to earlier promotional activities.
I know that this past Thursday — a Marlins off day — Logan canceled a charity bowling tournament in Miami because he said the Florida Marlins Community Foundation “dropped the ball” and didn’t sell enough lanes in advance.
Logan wasn’t happy about that. And there apparently were some other events in which players were supposed to participate. There was also an autograph signing earlier Saturday, which Logan participated in. But he put his foot down and did not participate in the photo session with season ticket holders.
Read the rest of Capozzi’s piece for more. It also has a full transcript of quotes from LoMo’s pow-wow with the media after learning that he had been sent to the minors. This story is obviously far from over.
Source: Drew Silva @ Hardball Talk
Jeff Conine, “Mr. Marlin” himself, has served two stints in teal and is currently employed by the Marlins as a special assistant to team president David Samson.
If anyone is a “true Marlin”, it’s this guy.
When asked why Ramirez frustrates him so, Conine responded:
I don’t know. I just, I don’t know. I think that obviously Hanley is a phenomenal talent. But as a guy that — I’m probably jealous too, because I didn’t have that kind of talent, but I had to work extremely hard on a nightly basis to put my talent on the field. I think there are some nights where he doesn’t try as hard as he should.
Conine went on to say that Ramirez was “one of the top five talents in baseball,” but like many others he doesn’t know if he cares enough.
Ramirez had a miserable first three months of 2011 and is currently hitting .249/.338/.394 in 297 at-bats. While he’s been much better of late — he’s hit .348/.434/.636 with five homers and 18 RBI during July — he’s going to need a scorching second half to beat his 2010 numbers, which were already a big disappointment based on what he did from 2007-09.
While the likelihood of Ramirez being traded remains remote, this may be a sign that patience amongst the Marlin’s faithful is indeed running out.