Marlins: Can Derek Jeter Help Save Major League Baseball?

COOPERSTOWN, NEW YORK - JULY 21: Former New York Yankee Derek Jeter attends the Baseball Hall of Fame induction ceremony at Clark Sports Center on July 21, 2019 in Cooperstown, New York. (Photo by Jim McIsaac/Getty Images)
COOPERSTOWN, NEW YORK - JULY 21: Former New York Yankee Derek Jeter attends the Baseball Hall of Fame induction ceremony at Clark Sports Center on July 21, 2019 in Cooperstown, New York. (Photo by Jim McIsaac/Getty Images) /

After the Houston Astros cast a shadow over baseball, can Derek Jeter and the Marlins change the narrative on the 2020 MLB season?

As I was reading a story on by Ian O’Connor, it dawned on me that Major League Baseball may not fully recover from the Houston Astros cheating scandal that affected three teams immediately and cast yet another blackeye on Major League Baseball for the entire 2020 season. And yes, every team in the league, including the Miami Marlins, is affected.

Baseball is sacred. The NFL and NBA have had their share of earth-shattering events. Hockey is the tough-guy sport that continues to fly under the radar. But baseball is engrained as the sport everyone can adapt to and cheer for. But stealing signs and winning a World Series and having it spill over into the Boston Red Sox and New York Mets organizations has made it difficult to focus on anything else at the moment.

Spring Training is two weeks ago. The Marlins are preparing for its third season under the guidance of Derek Jeter and there is a sense this could be the year the corner is turned.

As I read O’Connor’s piece, the connection to our great game and Jeter grows deeper. While fans of other organizations hope for change and the game to overcome this atrocity, wouldn’t it be something gif these Marlins became the “feel good” story of 2020?

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With Jeter, who was lauded for his play on the field and his competitive nature, running the show it’s a possibility that could happen. Just like a Hollywood movie script, if the Marlins make progress, everyone will take notice because if their CEO and co-owner, not in spite of him.

Derek Jeter is still the face of this franchise. When nothing else goes right, the Rockstar smiles and promises for better days. And MLB starts to believe in the miracle of the Marlins.

"“Jeter was introduced Tuesday (Jan. 21) as a member of the Baseball Hall of Fame Class of 2020 and just missing becoming the second player to be voted in unanimously — a year behind his teammate Mariano Rivera,” O’Connor wrote.“It is a day to remember what Jeter represented, and who he was long before he became just another owner of a floundering sports team (the Miami Marlins), and just another rich guy who founded a website (The Players’ Tribune) that is still struggling to make a consistently profound impact.”“It is be a day to remember that no post-playing business failure can reduce Jeter’s staggering accomplishments over his 20-year career in the Bronx. If The Captain is worried about that, he shouldn’t be. And if he’s worried that he’ll always be viewed through a skeptic’s lens by sabermetricians who ripped his fielding range, and by faraway fans who assumed he was overhyped by the big-city media machine, Jeter shouldn’t lose any sleep over that either.”"

Jeter took a Major League team and much to the dismay of many Marlins fans dismantled it in a few short weeks. He decided to build the foundation in his own image, brick by brick, paying attention to detail. He decided to work toward building the farm system with pitching, then adding key hitting components. And after two years of struggling mightily, it looks as though he and his front office are onto something big.

At least the moves the team has made this offseason would indicate that. The Marlins may be the worst team in the National League East, but they won’t be the worst team in Major League Baseball this coming season.

A worked hard at making this team viable. He wasn’t the best player to ever play the game. He was, however, relentless and wanted perfection. It is a characteristic that carried over into his management of a baseball team looking for its identity.

So, in Year 3 of this “project”, it could be time for Jeter and Co. to step out of the shadow of a slow plan and make a splash in 2020. Even 75 wins would warrant an “aha” moment from the baseball masses. This game is a bit scolded right this moment. And amid the controversy that comes with this latest scandal, some good could emerge to make us forget about it.

Why not the Miami Marlins and why not Derek Jeter leading the way? It makes too much sense for it not to happen. And it makes to much sense if it does not happen at all.