Last year, Miami Marlins fan Gary Cooper invested in three Jose Reyes jerseys.
With Reyes among the players the Marlins traded to Toronto this past offseason, Cooper wore a hand-lettered T-shirt to Saturday's Winter Warm Up at Marlins Park that expressed his feelings about his favorite ballclub.
Marlins — Yes
Loria — No
Samson — No
Beinfest — No
"We love our Marlins, but hate the ownership. I wish somebody would buy the team," said Cooper, a Miami resident. "Last year you couldn't even walk in here. Now look at it. Everybody's mad. This is the way I think it's going to be all season."
Saturday's modest turnout was in stark contrast to last year's event, then known as FanFest, which drew more than 40,000 and generated sales of 130,000 tickets. This time only a few fans were waiting when the ticket windows opened. Those who came for player autographs found the lines mercifully short.
Discounts were being offered for Opening Night tickets. Last year, you needed luck in a lottery to get one.
Turns out the metamorphosis of the Marlins was a mirage.
Marlins face tough task winning back fans
Fort Lauderdale Sun-Sentinel | Feb 10