FLORIDA– After a three-game sweep by the hapless New York Mets this weekend, the Marlins have been reduced to spectators for the remainder of the season. The entire team was shut down after their 3-2 ninth-inning loss to the Mets on Sunday.
“Essentially, we do the same thing we did before, it’s just that we don’t actually play the games,” outfielder Bryan Petersen said.
“It’s tough, it’s really tough,” said third baseman Gil Velazquez. “You get into a routine and your body knows when it’s ready to go. I’m not too used to sitting and watching. It’s kind of hard to watch the other team come to bat and play the field, and know that we’re just going to sit in the dugout and do nothing while they run around the bases.”
The team, due to its lousy record and general hopelessness, has also been pre-emptively shut down for 2013. “We could have planned to go out there in April, just to see what would happen,” said catcher Rob Brantly, “but it’s fairly obvious what the result would be, so we’ve decided to just pack it in and let the other teams win by default. We are, however, totally stoked to come back fresh and rejuvenated in 2014. Or maybe 2015.”
Reliever Ryan Webb is already thinking about 2016. He’ll go to the Arizona Fall League to begin his offseason training. Then the Arizona Winter League, the Arizona Spring League, the Arizona Summer League, and then then whole cycle again, four and a half times before getting back onto a major league field a few weeks after his 30th birthday. Part of his training will involve watching video of the Marlins’s 2012 season, a task no one would look forward to.
“The smell is always there,” Webb said of fall. “It gets ingrained in you after doing it for so long. But I’m OK. I’ll be back. We all will. And maybe the hunger to win will overcome our pretty obvious lack of ability.”
Manager Ozzie Guillen could not be reached for comment.