Marlins 2019: The start of something big

MIAMI, FL - JUNE 09: Pablo Lopez #49 of the Miami Marlins delivers a pitch in the first inning against the Atlanta Braves at Marlins Park on June 9, 2019 in Miami, Florida. (Photo by Mark Brown/Getty Images)
MIAMI, FL - JUNE 09: Pablo Lopez #49 of the Miami Marlins delivers a pitch in the first inning against the Atlanta Braves at Marlins Park on June 9, 2019 in Miami, Florida. (Photo by Mark Brown/Getty Images) /

If the past month and a half is any indication of how the Miami Marlins will look in another year or two, then fans need to get on board this bus now.

I have never been good at math, but I think I figured this out. How’s the Miami Marlins continue to climb toward relevancy in Major League Baseball, my prediction that the team would win 75 games this year is looking better with each passing day.

Miami is currently 30-46 on the season. There are 86 games remaining on their schedule. In order to get to 75 wins, the team we need to go 45-41 the remainder of the season.

It’s not unheard of considering the team is 20-15 in its last 35 games and the pitching rotation is proving to be one of the best in the National League.

I am not taking my prediction to Las Vegas anytime soon, but looking at the roster prior to the start of the regular season, I knew there would be bumps in the road. Everybody knew there would be potholes, but the way this young staff is coming together and winning in an unorthodox fashion at times, there is a reason for help.

In this case, hope is a good thing.

Being able to make a Shawshank Redemption reference in a baseball story is epic.

I am starting to buy into the notion that this franchise is a team to watch next season and beyond. As I have talked with my good friend Adam Carey about this many times already this year, these Marlins are going to be good. The pitching staff could rival the Atlanta Braves rotation from the early 1990s, sans Greg Maddux.

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The younger bats that are still developing in the minors are going to be better than expected. And for those who believe that Don Mattingly should be ousted because of four losing seasons, they had better rethink their stance.

At times, it is hard to separate being a baseball fan and a writer who covers the sport. This team still has issues to address. The Marlins aren’t a polished product. Injuries have come at the worst time. Lack of production at the plate has failed solid outings from its starters. There needs to be more consistency in the bullpen. I get it. A work in progress. Believing in the process. Working through a blueprint. Derek Jeter is starting to push all the right buttons. And for once, talking about the Miami Marlins is a hip thing to do.

You can quote me on that and save it for a later date.

Glenn Geffner, who is part of the Marlins broadcast team down in South Florida, took to his Facebook and Twitter accounts after the team swept the Philadelphia Phillies over the weekend. He wrote an impassioned plea for more fan support because this team is better than it was since opening day.

He is right. This team plays better in front of 40,000 fans on the road, then it does in front of barely 9,000 locals at Marlins Park. Losing breeds contempt. It’s treated like a disease. This team couldn’t win with all-star players – Giancarlo Stanton, Marcell Ozuna, Jose Fernandez – during the Jeffrey Loria era. Now, the rebuild is in full swing in Year 2 and looks to be the blueprint other teams may follow in the future.

But it’s not done yet. Hopefully, these Marlins, the “Misfits” who keep plugging along, prove us all wrong and win more than 75 games this season. It’s not likely, but none of us expected the success of the starting rotation. Maybe this roster has a few more surprises in store for us.

All of this makes us wonder what will happen in the second half of 2019. I guess just like me, fans will have to wait and see how much better this team is by the end of the season.