Remember when the Miami Marlins made a memorable trade with the Arizona Diamondbacks? The trade was of course a prospect for prospect trade: Jazz Chisholm Jr. for Zac Gallen. There is quite a bit of history between these two teams. The Fish were the fastest team to go from the first season (1993) to winning the World Series (1997). It was just four seasons. Arizona then beat that record by doing it in three seasons (1998-2001). The Fish then finished with a better record this season, and yet they won the pennant.
What can the Miami Marlins learn from the Arizona Diamondbacks?
It's frustrating to think that the Miami Marlins had a better record than the Arizona Diamondbacks, and were ahead in the Wild Card spots, but it's Arizona that won the pennant. I wonder if the teams finished in reverse with those spots... Would The Fish beat the Milwaukee Brewers too? Would the Los Angeles Dodgers with their devaststated rotation fall next?
Would The Fish be able to do better against Philly having more games to play? Would Arizona get swept by Philly like The Fish did? The score was 2-0 in the WC series, and Philly did take a 2-0 lead against them in the NLCS... It's just guesswork, but we can dream right?
The lesson that the Miami Marlins can learn is to play for the playoffs. The Atlanta Braves and the Los Angeles Dodgers showed that regular season success does not equal the same in the postseason. LA won 111 games last season, and 100 games this season, only to have two straight losses in the NLDS. Atlanta won 101 games last season and 104 games this season, that led to two straight NLDS eliminations.
The Arizona Diamondbacks built themselves for the postseason. They did this with a top-heavy solid rotation, a solid bullpen and key bats that get the job done. Good coaching and managing is the final piece that puts them over the top. The Miami Marlins just need to follow that same model and a second consecutive playoff appearance should be in the cards.