Marlins Again Passed Over For MLB All-Star Game; Is Fire Sale The Culprit?
The Marlins for years had "identified 2015" for bringing the MLB All-Star Game to South Florida, but it “appears they'll have to wait until 2017 at the earliest,” according to Juan Rodriguez of the South Florida SUN-SENTINEL. While the next opportunity for the Marlins to host the event will be '17, that is “not a given” as several NL clubs with “new facilities built before Marlins Park like the Nationals, Phillies and Padres are itching to host.” Marlins President David Samson yesterday in a statement said of the Reds hosting the '15 All-Star Game, “We recognize that Cincinnati's ballpark opened many years before Marlins Park. We remain confident and hopeful that Miami will host a future All-Star game.” Rodriguez asked, “Were the Marlins snubbed this time around for punitive reasons?” The Marlins “slashing payroll again probably didn't help their cause, and neither do all those vacant store fronts along the Marlins Park south garage" (SUN-SENTINEL.com, 1/22). In West Palm Beach, Joe Capozzi wrote the Marlins were “supposed to get the 2000 game” but MLB instead gave the honor to Atlanta, “in part because of questions about the Marlins following the dismantling of the 1997 team.” The Marlins “upended their roster again this winter, angering their fan base -- and apparently the league” (PALMBEACHPOST.com, 1/22). In Ft. Lauderdale, Dave Hyde wrote MLB Commissioner Bud Selig is “so darned upset at the Marlins, he again pulled a discussed All-Star Game away from South Florida.” This is Selig's "way of showing just how steamed he is at Marlins owner Jeffrey Loria for the team’s most recent fire sale" (SUN-SENTINEL.com, 1/22). In West Palm Beach, Dave George writes, “Baseball isn’t behind the Marlins any more. If the fans won’t boycott this flimsy organization, Selig will” (PALM BEACH POST, 1/23).
COMPETITIVE MARKETPLACE: In DC, James Wagner noted ’17 also is the “soonest potential year” for the Nationals to host the All-Star Game. It is “unclear why Cincinnati beat out other competing teams for the ’15 game, but the slow-moving development surrounding Nationals Park could have been a factor.” The competition for the ’17 game includes Petco Park and Citizens Bank Park, "also fairly new stadiums that have yet to host the event.” Also in the mix is Wrigley Field, which “turns 100 next year and team executives are hoping to renovate the stadium" (WASHINGTONPOST.com, 1/22).