Miami Marlins Manager Mess: Ozzie Guillen, Fredi Gonzalez Both Call Out Owner Jeffrey Loria


Being N.L. East fans we know all too well the revolving door the Miami Marlins' manager position has had.  Within just days of each other, both current manager Ozzie Guillen and former manager Fredi Gonzalez both spoke up about Marlins owner Jeffrey Loria.   Both were highly critical of the Marlins' owner.

First came former Marlins manager Fredi Gonzalez, now enjoying success as manager for the Atlanta Braves.  On Sunday, in the Miami Herald Sports Buzz blog, Gonzalez is quoted as saying,

"There's not a manager dead or alive that Jeffrey thinks is good enough. Not Connie Mack, not anyone.  Stick with someone.  Give guys opportunities. But he likes to make changes. As long as he owns the team, he makes the decisions. In his mind, they're the right ones."

Loria fired right back, suggesting that Gonzalez was a failure:

"I'm a little surprised because it's classless, especially because he was with us for five years and was a colossal failure … Not nice. Not nice."

Gonzalez actually managed three and a half years, not five. I disagree that Gonzalez was a failure; the Marlins teams he managed never had any money and he had the task of managing the personality of Hanley Ramirez while having a core of minor league players who had no business in the major leagues because they refused to pay anyone.  

Gonzalez led the team to two winnings seasons out of his three full seasons for the Marlins and was two games under the .500 mark when Loria let him go.  The Atlanta Braves were absolutely thrilled when Gonzalez became available to manage for them.  

After Gonzalez, the Marlins could not find someone to manage the team.   Edwin Rodriguez took over upon Gonzalez's departure on an interim basis to manage through the end of the 2010 season.  Then after the Marlins could not find anyone, Rodrizuez hung around, pretty much on an interim basis again in 2011.  Halfway through the season he "resigned", though most assume he was let go by the Marlins.  Jack McKeon finished 2011 for the Marlins, another interim solution.

Then came Ozzie Guillen, and Loria already started on Guillen.  Hearing whispers that Loria was searching for his replacement behind his back, Guillen made some comments about the Marlins' 2012 failures and what owner Loria could do.

"If Jeffrey doesn’t think I’m doing the job I should do … it’s not the first time he’s fired a manager.   Look yourself in the mirror and ask why so many (bleeping) managers come through here"

Loria was unhappy about these remarks too, reports Joe Capozzi in his "Fish Tank" blog:

Apparently owner Jeffrey Loria is angry at manager Ozzie Guillen for comments Guillen made that were critical of Loria, according to a person who has spoken with Marlins officials.

Exactly what Guillen said that ticked Loria off is not clear.

But Loria didn’t like being, in the source’s words, “called out” by Guillen.

Guillen's comments are pretty much the same that Gonzalez made, and both are totally accurate.   Right now one could assume Guillen will be fired too.  Let's not forget another manager that Loria fired: Joe Girardi.

In August 2006, Girardi's first year managing the Marlins, a reporter asked Loria about the job Girardi was doing with the club.  Loria took it as an opportunity to give credit to the rest of the organization instead of Girardi:

Managers obviously have some input during the course of the season. But what's important is the product that's put on the field by the baseball department as well. An amazing job was done by our organization before we started this season.

The whole season was filled with reports of a "rift" between Girardi and Loria.  When it was all said and done, Loria fired Girardi.  Immediately after, Girardi won the National League Manager of the Year Award.

Loria is the spoiled rich kid who wants to do stupid things with his money because it's his, he owns it, and wants everyone to notice.   The Miami Marlins are his toy, not a professional baseball franchise with baseball people making baseball decisions to win a World Series.

I want to tell Loria to shut up and let baseball people run his franchise.  But, as a Phillies fan, this is much more fun.  Keep it up, please.