Can the Miami Marlins still make an impact on the 2020 Major League Baseball season? Do they have a chance to make the playoffs?
After two declarations on Saturday – the first being that the Miami Marlins season will continue on Tuesday, and the second from MLB commissioner Rob Manfred that he is not shutting down 2020 despite more cases of the Coronavirus amongst other teams – it’s time to focus once again on baseball in South Florida.
With stories running at full speed about how the team may have violated protocols which led to the spread of the COVID-19 virus amongst the organization, this is a ball club that must get back to focusing on winning games and catching up to the playoff race.
And again, I am left thinking about this team becoming a postseason contender. Should that happen, it would take on Hollywood qualities out of movies like Major League. It would also prove to be the greatest comeback story of my generation with this sport.
I’m not sure it’s possible given how much scheduling has changed and how much time this Miami Marlins team has missed on the diamond. But I can say that the fans want to see what this team can do after winning the first series of the year.
Now that we know doubleheaders will be played because of other teams missing time on the field and scheduling becomes even more important, Don Mattingly and his crew must come back to work knowing they have as much a chance as anybody.
That is the beauty of baseball. Like I said in stories this week, we’re not sure who’s going to be in the starting lineup because we’re not sure of everybody who has been affected by COVID-19.
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What we do know is the team has worked to add players to the roster and has shuffled through not only a 30-man roster but the taxi squad to determine which players will have the opportunity to make an impact.
At this point, I think it’s safe to say to Miami Marlins’ front office should throw away the blueprint for 2020 and see what happens. Given the situation, the chaotic nature of the game and the fact that there is a feeling of uncertainty with the marlins and 29 other teams, finding out what Mattingly and team CEO Derek Jeter have with the players who will stand with them should make for interesting reading and writing the next two months.
I am not yet convinced the season will finish. I have plenty of questions about what happens should another break out like this occurs once again. I also wonder what happens when another MLB team goes through the same process. Had this been a blue blood, the reaction might have been different and the coverage surrounding the situation a little more objective.
What happens now is it a team with a lot I promise has a chance to right a wrong. The only difference is these new faces may become the topic of conversation while players who were expected to carry the torch are still dealing with issues from the virus.
While astronomical numbers of players and team members being affected by COVID-19 has been the topic of the Marlins season so far, winning cures a lot of things. Should the Marlins come back out onto the field and continue to prove they are not a punching bag, then this topic may get swept under the rug.
But if the Marlins lose games like all of us would normally expect Miami to do, then this becomes a much bigger topic and something that lingers for the remainder of the season and beyond.
I believe the front office and the entire organization is going to do everything it can to put this behind them. With all things being equal and other teams dealing with the virus as well, the Marlins shouldn’t be singled out entirely despite how they handled this, to begin with.
Starting Tuesday a different path is taken. Let’s hope the Miami Marlins have learned their lesson. And let’s hope they didn’t forget how to win baseball games while they were waiting to get back to doing their job.