Reporting Tim Kephart
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MIAMI (CBSMiami) – The full page ad in three major papers is Miami Marlins owner Jeffery Loria, unfiltered. That said his choice words for every fan or critic may be doing more damage than good.
“It’s a bad idea because now I am more mad than I used to be. I’m madder now than I used to be.” said Richardo Fernandez, a Marlins fan.
Yankees fan Alex Ginesin of Coconut Creek chimed in, “If I were a Miami Marlins fan I would veto all their games.”
In the letter, Loria admits “It’s no secret that last season was not our best — actually it was one of our worst.As the owner of the ballclub, the buck stops with me and I take my share of the blame where it’s due.”
The very next sentence though, he goes on the offensive for things he believes are not true.
Loria defends the trading away of star players, leaves the county to blame for the awful financing of the stadium at taxpayer expense, and promises better communication.
Manny Navarro, a Marlins beat writer for the Miami Herald, explained Loria has a public relations issue.
“He’s gotta gain the trust back of the community, of everybody who he’s burned,” Navarro said. “There are so many fans out there that are just hoping he sells the team and gets out of town.”
Navarro believes season ticket sales are diving. Loria has to do something.
“Step one was putting that letter out to the fans. Step two is tonight,” Navarro said.
Tonight is a cocktail party at the Marlins ballpark for invited print journalists. It will be a first for Navarro.
“I’m guessing he’s a scotch man, but we’ll find out tonight exactly what is that he drinks,” he joked.
Loria’s communication will be put to the test Tuesday when he addresses all media. We asked fans what they would ask.
“How do you expect me to pay top tickets to see a minor league baseball team?” said Yankee fan Ginesin. Fernandez wanted to know “Where is our money? Where is the taxpayer money?”
We will take the fan’s questions to Spring Training Tuesday. Tune into CBS4 to see what Loria has to say.