It’s been an ugly decade for the Miami Marlins, and it’s continued to get ugly with the ownership change. The Marlins won a World Series in 2013, and it’s been a downward trend pretty well since then. There’s been a few winning seasons mixed in, but more losing often than not. They hit an all-time low in 2013 when they lost 100 games. Miami opened a brand new ballpark in 2012 and the following year had their second-worst year in franchise history. That’s a great way to put people in the seats in what is already a difficult market to attract fans.
Baseball falls somewhere below high school people for many people in Florida, so a team that isn’t winning doesn’t do anything in Florida. Now with the messy transition to Derek Jeter as part owner and CEO, Marlins’ fans are wondering if anyone really cares. Jeter and management were quick to sent talent elsewhere, notably Giancarlo Stanton. Previous owner, Jeffrey Loria, was criticized for not caring about winning. He had zero support behind him, so it came as a blow when the Marlins sent talent packing under the new ownership.
The end result for the Marlins is a 21-39 baseball club, with Wednesday pending at the moment. No shocker there. The Marlins may save money on their payroll, but they are going to bleed money when it comes to tickets and concession sales. I wouldn’t expect that to change anytime soon in Miami. The real dagger to a potential swing to perhaps being a respectable team was the death of pitcher Jose Fernandez. Fernandez had the potential to be a HOF’er, but his life was cut short in that boating accident. I don’t have much confidence that he’d be in Miami, though. He was due to make a brinks truck worth of money on a new contract, and someone would have undoubtedly outbid the Marlins. The Marlins are currently up on the Cards as I’m writing this by a score of 9-2, so kudos for coming to St. Louis to play. The Marlins also beat them 7-4 in the season opener on Tuesday. Head below for our free Marlins vs. Cardinals pick on Thursday.
Miami Marlins vs. St. Louis Cardinals Pick
Trevor Richards (0-2, 4.94 ERA) vs. Miles Mikolas (6-1, 2.49 ERA)
The Marlins were really thrown a bad hand with Jose Fernandez. If they weren’t planning on resigning him to a fat contract, I assume the Marlins would have been intelligent enough to trade him at the deadline to get a plethora of prospects. Prospects which could be helping the Marlins at the moment our in the foreseeable future. Trevor Richards is a prospect that was called up to the majors for the first time in his career in 2018. He was recently given the nod to come up to face the Cardinals, and getting a spot start against the Cardinals on Thursday.
All things considered, he hasn’t been too bad, and there is plenty of time for him to grow. The offense hasn’t helped him out any, failing to rack up a single win thus far. He also hasn’t been good or even average on the road. Richards enters with an ERA of 5.84 with a 1.95 WHIP and .417 OBA. Note that he hasn’t made a pitch in the majors since April.
In his last major league start, Richards looked good, allowing no runs and 1 hit against the Dodgers. For the Cards, their offense hasn’t played well against the Marlins across the last two days, and I’d be surprised if they lay down and play dead after getting smacked around two games in a row by a had Marlins team.
Miles Mikolas will counter for the Cardinals. He’s in his fourth year, but first with the Cards. Mikolas has been at his best in St. Louis, as he’s posting an ERA 2.49 on the season with a stellar record of 6-1. Mikolas hasn’t allowed much at home, with a 1.53 ERA and 0.91 WHIP. In his last four outings at home, he hasn’t allowed more than a run per start. Note that two were shutouts. After getting pushed around by the Marlins for two days, I like the Cardinals to come hard on Thursday and return the favor.