Wednesday Morning Quarterback: 2nd =[ and the MLB All-Star Game
June 4th, 2008 by Dan

You’ve probably heard the saying that hindsight is 20/20 on Monday morning, so just imagine how well I can call ’em two days later on Wednesday. That’s right, it’s time for Wednesday Morning Quarterback, your weekly sports round-up.

As I write this, something terrible has occurred: The Marlins are sitting in second place in their division, 1.5 games behind the :shudder: Philadelphia Phillies. “How could such a tragedy happen?” I can hear you all ask. The answer is pretty simple, the Fish have gone two for five in the last seven games they’ve been on the road. As I said before, this road trip would be a true test, and we’re not really passing it. We dropped two to the Mets, two to those dastardly Phillies, and this most recent game on Monday to Atlanta (remember, I’m writing this on Tuesday). Really, our only strong hope is to pick up these next three games against Atlanta and hope the Phillies cool off a bit on their homerun nonsense.

There are a couple of other big reasons why we haven’t been winning, but they all ultimately boil down to defensive mistakes on both the mound and the field. The Marlins are tied for first with the Pittsburgh Pirates for the most errors committed on-field (49) and are 22nd (of 30) with an Earned Run Average of 4.46 compared to the league high of 3.32 held by the Blue Jays (really?). In at least two of these last seven games, I distinctly remember watching the Marlins either come from behind or have a lead and lose it near the end of the game to end up with another loss. I think I’ve also seen another stat around somewhere that the Marlins have one of the lowest run differentials (scored vs. scored against) in the MLB and certainly the lowest among top teams in each of the divisions.

With all that thrown out there, I don’t think the Marlins are headed for a losing season all of a sudden. They’re still playing with one of the strongest offenses in the game after all, they’ve just got to turn the defense up a notch. Hopefully we’ll see some help with the starting pitching soon when Anibal Sanchez gets off of the DL and starts pitching again.

At any rate, it’s still cool to see the Marlins in a decently secure (if they don’t choke against the Braves) second place and to still have the Tampa Bay Rays standing proud atop the AL East a whole 1.5 games ahead.

I hope you’re all excited about the All-Star game coming up in just under five weeks. So far it seems that the Marlin’s own Hanley Ramirez might technically be the first Marlin to be selected to play for the NL All-Star team. The only other Marlin to ever play for the team was Gary Sheffield, who was traded to the Marlins rather close to the deadline in 1993 and received most of his votes while playing for the San Diego Padres. This would be a huge honor for the shortstop considering that Marlins fans probably contribute the least votes to the All-Star ballot (with their MLB-leading lowest attendance), yet he’s still in the lead (by only 8000 votes, but still in the lead). Now if only we could get Chase Utley to stop being so awesome, we might get Dan Uggla in as the NL second baseman…

EDIT: The Marlins finally snapped their losing streak with a 6-4 win against the Braves this afternoon. We love you Hanley!

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