Apr 4, 2013; Washington, DC, USA; Miami Marlins center fielder Justin Ruggiano (20) is congratulated by second baseman Donovan Solano (17) after hitting a solo homer against the Washington Nationals during the second inning at Nationals Park. Mandatory Credit: Brad Mills-USA TODAY Sports
Okay Marlins fans; it is finally time to celebrate! You’re probably wondering what exactly it is that were celebrating, right? Well, I can definitely confirm that it isn’t the fact that they endured yet another loss. Sadly, what we are celebrating is the fact that the Miami Marlins were finally able to get on the score board for the first time all season. Yep, it took three games, but, they finally got it. Unfortunately it was only a solo run scored by outfielder Justin Ruggiano, after he was able to hit the ball over the fence in the second inning against the Washington Nationals pitcher, Jordan Zimmerman.
Over the span of the first two games of the season, the Marlins showed little to no potential offensively. Yesterday was a different story. While it was a fantastic sight to see the Marlins knock off eight hits against arguably the best pitching staff in the entire MLB, it was quite heartbreaking to see the defense begin their fair-share of hard-aches. It seemed as if the two sides decided to switch off on being mediocre. I was going to list the amount of hits the offense was able to put up in the first two games of the season, but then I went to the Marlins page on ESPN and saw something even more frightening than the well below average amount of hits. The Marlins are currently ranked 30th in these four categories; runs scored, batting average, on base percentage, and slugging percentage. Scary, isn’t it?
The pitching staff and the defense have been decent so far, ranking around the middle of the pack for a majority of the major categories; however, after yesterday’s performance you’d have to wonder if they are going to continue to decline, or if it was just a bump in the road as they get towards the bottom portion of the starting rotation. The Nationals were able to score six runs yesterday on nine hits. The thing that stands out a little bit more in my opinion is the two errors the Marlins committed. Sure, this is a young ball club. I understand that there are going to be some growing pains and some mistakes as management continues to figure out how this ball team plays; however, it isn’t a good sign that it is happening during the third game of the season. Are the Washington Nationals one of the best teams in baseball? Yes. Am I surprised the Marlins got swept? Honestly, no. Even though the Marlins were able to keep the first two games a tad bit competitive, it is still frustrating as a fan to see your favorite team struggle.
Maybe I am exaggerating a little bit. Maybe I should give this team a couple of weeks before I continue to judge them so negatively. I think I’m judging them so harshly, so early, because this is what most of us expected and it is hard to come to terms that as fans we are going to have to sit here and watch our team struggle for yet another season and possibly more seasons to come. This is certainly not what Jeffery Loria expected when he made the big moves last season, but hey, what does he know? (I’m serious)
Next up for the Marlins is the New York Mets. Although this once was a fantastic rivalry, with the two teams being mediocre the past couple of seasons, some of the excitement might have died down a bit. Even with that being said it’s still the Mets and it is still the Marlins biggest rival. The Marlins will send out Alex Sanabia while the Mets will counter with Jeremy Hefner and the first pitch will be thrown at 7:10 P.M. EST. We will have full coverage for the series and each game here on Marlin Maniac
Thanks for Reading and Thanks to Geoff for the Title!