It’s time for the Marlins to make some noise in the NL East

JUPITER, FL - MARCH 12: Brian Anderson #15 of the Miami Marlins in action during a spring training game against the New York Mets at Roger Dean Stadium on March 12, 2019 in Jupiter, Florida. The Marlins defeated the Mets 8-1. (Photo by Rich Schultz/Getty Images)
JUPITER, FL - MARCH 12: Brian Anderson #15 of the Miami Marlins in action during a spring training game against the New York Mets at Roger Dean Stadium on March 12, 2019 in Jupiter, Florida. The Marlins defeated the Mets 8-1. (Photo by Rich Schultz/Getty Images) /
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All signs point to the Miami Marlins moving in the right direction. The team had their first full-squad practice on Monday in Jupiter, Florida.

After years of missing the playoffs, the Miami Marlins finally believe they are forward instead of taking two steps back.

For the past two seasons, the Miami Marlins have been a baseball franchise crawling along the bases. Now, with an injection of veteran talent in the lineup and a stronger and deeper bullpen, this team is ready to walk and possibly run past the basement of the National League East basement.

First, they have to establish themselves as a team that won’t just lie down for the remainder of the division. They must also learn to win close games and hold onto leads when necessary.

"“We continue to build a sustainable, long-term organization,” Marlins chairman and principal owner Bruce Sherman said via MLB.com. “We will do whatever is necessary to win. None of us got here to do anything but build a winnable, sustainable franchise. We are here for the long term. It’s not a question of tomorrow, today or yesterday. It’s sustainable.”"

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Those words by Sherman should make Marlins fans happy as they have been hoping for a contender since the Obama Administration and a playoff berth since Bill Clinton was in his first term in the White House. Times have changed, but the fact the Marlins are still looking to be a viable baseball team has not.

My son was entering preschool around that time.

If we have learned anything about the Marlins fans is they are patient to a fault. Derek Jeter has reminded them over and over if they would ride out the storm and let the foundation firm up, there would be rewards for their patience. That may start to happen this coming season.

Not a playoff berth, but improvement – steady improvement.

"“The thing you can say when you look in that clubhouse is there’s a lot more talent,” Marlins president of baseball operations Michael Hill said via MLB.com. “There’s a lot more upper-level talent. There’s a lot more veteran talent. A better pitching staff. A better bullpen. A better lineup.”"

The proof is in the effort put forth this offseason acquiring talent, not dismissing it altogether.

"“When you start to put all those pieces together, the expectation to win more games comes with that,” Hill continued."

The Marlins are still considered a year or two, possibly even three from being a serious playoff contender, but the thought of 57 wins in 2020 hasn’t been brought up by anyone in the organization. Now, it’s not if they will win, rather when it will happen.

Hill, Jeter, and Sherman hope it is sooner rather than a three-year timetable.

"“Derek [Jeter] and ownership have been very clear of where we want to go,” Marlins manager Don Mattingly said on Monday.“The organization that we want to build. It just felt like it’s time to get this thing to the hill, where we’re not always fighting upstream. It’s time we started going downhill a little bit.”"

Next. Marlins: Does Jeff Brigham make the final cut?. dark

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