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Smart rebuilds tend to come together a year early. They do not tend to intersect with a pandemic that runs roughshod through the organization. Miami’s 2020 season would’ve been impressive in any context—the culmination of an aggressive realignment of resources—but in a world where they signed street free agents to play crucial roles in their decimated lineup, their success borders on the miraculous. 

17 new players joined the club to take on Baltimore for four games in three days after the active roster spent a week in quarantine. Naturally, the Miami replacements won all four games, prompting manager Don Mattingly to say he’d “have to write a book after this.” Fast forward two months: the Marlins just swept the Cubs out of the playoffs; Mattingly is working on a nine-book, coming-of-age saga because as fresh as these fish have been this year, the best is yet to come. 

Please, blog, may I have some more?

The Miami Marlins are a baseball team. I mean the sport they play is recognizably baseball. 

Other than that, there isn’t a lot of certainty in Miami. Even 2019 Whit-alike contest winner Jon Berti seems as likely to fall back as spring forward in 2020. 

Is it really darkest before the dawn?

Anyway, hope floats just off the coast. Er, inland, where Marlins affiliates are loaded with the fruits of an organizational tear-down that would’ve been vetoed in my home league. 

“Fruits” feels kind of extreme. Maybe we should call it the “eggplants” of an organizational tear-down. 

The eggplants for all-world Christian Yelich were players who do everything but hit, which seems to be something of a type for the Front Office helmed by Derek Jeter and Gary Denbo. They whiffed on Lewis Brinson who whiffs at everything, and they face a similar fate for everything in those Yelich and Stanton deals from two winters past unless someone (looking at you, Monte Harrison) changes their trajectory. 

Either way, even with those brutal trades, the Marlins are trending up thanks to a deep farm with rich soil for arms. 

Please, blog, may I have some more?