Dear South Florida,
I've been a Marlins fan since July 5, 1991 - the day Major League Baseball officially awarded a franchise to South Florida. I'm part of a family with four generations of Marlins fans, with enough invested energy to have the right to speak out.
I've watched the star-crossed history of this team - the tragedy of its first president, Carl Barger, dying at the 1992 baseball winter meetings, the tragi-comedy of Wayne Huizenga's sell-off of the 1997 world champions, Jeb Bush's "no" to John Henry's efforts to secure financing for a stadium site, Bud Selig's complicity in the mess (including the yanking of the 2000 All Star Game) and the machinations that resulted in the current Laurel-and-Hardy administration of the Marlins by Jeffrey Loria and David Samson - culminating in this year's disaster.
While Larry Beinfest did engineer trades for Dontrelle Willis and Juan Pierre, Dave Dombrowski - whose Tigers (including former Marlins Miguel Cabrera and Anibal Sanchez) are headed to another World Series - gets a lion's share of the credit for building the Marlins team that won the Series in 2003.
Any hopes for Marlins fans since then have been inevitably crushed. Joe Girardi led a young team to an overachieving 2006 season and won the National League Manager of the Year Award. But he insulted King Jeffrey the First by disagreeing with him, and all Girardi has done is take the New York Yankees to the postseason most years since.
I didn't think much of Fredi Gonzalez as a manager here, but he's done decently with the Atlanta Braves during his first two years there. Maybe it's what he's given to work with.
Beinfest and Mike Hill have gone from decent decisions a few years ago to mediocre/bad ones with most young players recently.
Manager Ozzie Guillen was fired, but Beinfest and Hill should go, too.
So should Loria and Samson, kings of self-denial.
So the request goes to my fellow South Floridians - or at least the few of you who fall into the category of very rich baseball fans.
There must be at least one among you who knows how to run a baseball team properly, to hire the right people and let them do their jobs, and bring a quality team to a quality ballpark (Loria got the "quality ballpark" part right, at least.).
For this fan, for others who are loyal fans despite the circus of the last two decades, please step forward and buy this team.
Always with hope (I'm a baseball fan, after all),