Miami Marlins are spinning their wheels with Dan Jennings


The Miami Marlins have dropped seven straight games and are 1-9 in their last 10. The last four contests, each at home against the Arizona Diamondbacks, were losses–yes, the Dbacks came into Marlins Park and broomed the lowly Fish right out of their own yard. This slide is a season-worst, even after the club started the year 3-11 and then somehow muscled their way back to .500 before the most recent avalanche of futility and ineptitude has rendered the Marlins with the second-worst record in baseball.

You have to give new manager Dan Jennings credit for trying to stir the pot, rearranging the puzzle pieces in his lineup in an attempt to jump-start his dead bats (it worked in yesterday’s series finale; the Marlins busted out 12 hits, but you know, they still lost.) But let’s be realistic here: the Marlins could have just as easily lost the last four games under Mike Redmond. You know, the guy who this offseason signed a contract extension to remain the Miami skipper through 2017. The guy who led the club to a 15-game improvement last year and was supposed to, for once, represent a constant in the dugout, a constant the Marlins haven’t enjoyed since Fredi Gonzalez managerial tenure from 2007-11.

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Giancarlo Stanton, who as you may know signed a pretty hefty contract to remain a Marlin for the rest of eternity, has done a rather admirable job of keeping his mouth shut this time around. His displeasure was fairly apparent following the 2012 fire sale, and of course speculation over Stanton’s happiness and future with the club dominated the storylines until the ink dried on his massive contract last November. The Marlins promised stability, and that was one of the main bullet points in terms of keeping their All-Star right fielder in South Florida. The Marlins were going to build around him, and finally start surrounding him with quality talent that could fuse together and compete for pennants, or at the very least Wild Card births.

Firing your manager of barely two-plus years, who writhed through a dreadful first season where the result was out of his control right from the start, does not bode well for continuity. Jeffrey Loria has pulled another fast one, and no one in the baseball world is the least bit shocked. Give him credit for, at least on paper, improving the roster in the interim and putting actual quality big league players out on the field this year.

Unfortunately, these players aren’t producing at their capable levels–shades of 2012, sadly–and less than two months into this season the club’s backbone, its supposed long-term manager, is already gone. And replacing him is someone who has no business taking up residence on that dugout step. The Marlins could just have easily lost seven straight games with Redmond, and they would still be making the wrong headlines, but they would at least look like they’re still trying.

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Next: Jennings shuffles lineup once again