Tuesday, September 5, 2017
Welp, once again, it's looking like the mantle of 'best team to miss the playoffs' might be going to the Miami Marlins. Even with the best hitters in the game, even with some pretty impressive young pitchers, even with a roster that'd even improved itself after a solid 2016, the Marlins are buried deep enough beneath Washington that their Wild Card chances are quite slim.
And it's sad, because the Marlins actually have a ton more promise than a lot of the teams in front of them in the standings (especially those bloody Cardinals). But the WC race seems to be relatively decided, with the Diamondbacks holding onto that first spot like a life preserver, and the Rockies and Brewers volleying for the second spot. Pretty much everyone else in the race hasn't a chance, which is a shame, as the Marlins have some great stories cooking.
Giancarlo Stanton has 53 home runs, and is chasing Maris like nobody who hasn't taken steroids ever has. Marcell Ozuna's making a case for consistent legitimacy, with another 30+ home run season. Dan Straily is taking full advantage of his second chance, hedging out injured players to become the team's ace, followed by converted-starter Jose Urena. Even Dee Gordon has learned to emphasize hits over homers, and is slowly building his redemption arc after last season. Plus, they just brought up this kid Dillon Peters, and he had a phenomenal debut, with 8 strikeouts and no earned runs. Maybe he could be the future ace?
Bottom line is the Marlins are far from a low-end team. They just got thrown back thanks to injuries, and a ton of Nationals wins. But, like last year, I still think they can become great very soon.
Coming Tonight: One of two consecutive customs of guys that got out of Queens, New York. This guy gets to play for a team that's gonna be frigging terrifying in the playoffs.