Thursday, March 23, 2006

N.L. East Preview: Florida Marlins

This week, I attempt to preview the National League East, going from bottom to top. Today, we start with the Florida Marlins.

Before the Marlins embarked on Fire Sale II (Back To The Minors), Marlins brass announced that they would keep Dontrelle Willis and Miguel Cabrera.

The question is: was that supposed to be a reward or a punishment?

The writing has been on the wall for this franchise since I was able to buy a ticket to a Mets/Marlins game in Florida during the top of the first inning and sit 22 rows away from the field. And now, all the talent acquired in exchange for the 1997 World Champion Marlins is now a distant memory...wheeled for players who the Marlins hope will be part of the third World Championship in Marlins history. Odds are though, it will be for the Las Vegas Marlins.

Other than Cabrera and Willis, the Marlins will be basically made up of prospects received from other teams. The most impressive might be right fielder Jeremy Hermida, who is a good enough prospect to send Cabrera to third base. Why will Hermida torture the Mets? Simple...he was born in Atlanta.

Then of course there's Mike Jacobs, who was everybody's favorite feel-good story of the 2005 Mets, at first base. Jacobs, acquired by the Marlins in the Carlos Delgado trade, will no doubt waste little time sticking it to the Mets with every at bat.

Actually, between Hermida, Jacobs, Josh Willingham behind the plate, and Hanley Ramirez at shortstop, the Marlins may not half bad at the plate in 2006. But past Dontrelle, the pitching is very suspect. Sergio Mitre, Brian Moehler, Jason Vargas, and Josh Johnson round out the rotation, and not for nothing, but can they have any more washed up closers in the bullpen? Joe Borowski? Kerry Ligtenberg? Matt Herges? For the love of all that is holy, Matt Herges???!?!??!?!? What, Braden Looper wasn't available?

The bottom line is, this is going to be one of those teams who have no business beating a team like the Mets on paper...but you know they will probably win the season series. And every time they beat the Mets, there will be lots of fans banging their heads against the wall. But all the victories the Marlins will accrue at the Mets expense will not keep them out of the cellar. It probably isn't going to keep them out of San Antonio either. Prediction: Fifth place.

Tomorrow, the fourth place team.


Fred! said...

Just wanted to be the first to say ... you're creeping up on 100,000 hits.

You're HUGE! Congrats!

Fox News is True said...

Dear Liberals,

ON this three year anniversary of Freedom in Iroc, you shoul dall be ashamed that you are not true patriots of the HOMELEAND.

The good people of IROC are now free and have hop eand democracy and now Bush is seen as a great hero and liberator in the world while all you liberals are smoking weed with barbra streisand.

hahaa. Bill Oreilly and FOx news are right about you.

albertsonmets said...

Did we liberate a Camaro somewhere?

elliot said...

Excuse me if I talk a little baseball here, but I wanted to point out that Jacobs already started to torment the Mets - he homered against the Mets the other day. Here's hoping that Jacobs gets cheered when he's at Shea.

Tommy_Calzone said...

Finally SNY & Cablevision reached agreement!

ajsmith said...

Why do I get the feeling that Yusmero Petit will pitch a no-hitter before a Met does? And, of course, he'll pitch it against us.

BTW, what are the chances he's up with the big club before September this year?

I really do hope that Delgado has a couple of big years for us. I really do.

Metstradamus said...

I don't think there's any doubt he'll be up at some point in 2006.

Mets Beast said...

hmm... i finally got a new post on my site... maybe some comments lol.. i hope it gets a lot of hits this year.. haha