Jeffrey Loria was at the center of the dismantling of the Miami Marlins, and now the team’s owner is taking heat for a letter to fans about why he imploded the big salary squad.
Loria is accused of building a contending team by acquiring players like Jose Reyes, then taking the team apart again once the team secured $2.4 billion in public funding for a new stadium. The owner made windfall profits from the Marlins, then hid that money from politicians when campaigning for a new stadium and broke a promise to increase payroll, Yahoo! Sports noted.
Now Jeffrey Loria has struck back, sending an open letter to Miami newspapers about the team. This too is being criticized, however.
Yahoo! Sports expert Jeff Passan took Loria to task for defending the trade of Jose Reyes to Toronto, for which the Marlins received only prospects in return. Passan mocked Loria’s claim that he trade was “universally celebrated.”
“The trade has not been universally celebrated. Less than a year after signing Reyes, a franchise shortstop, and Buehrle, a workhorse starter, the Marlins dealt them, along with Johnson, the best pitcher in team history, and instantaneously turned the Blue Jays, a sub-.500 team last season, into the favorites in the American League. In return, the Marlins received prospects Justin Nicolino, Jake Marisnick and Adeiny Hechavarria, plus shortstop Yunel Escobar – whom they traded to Tampa Bay for prospect Derek Dietrich – pitcher Henderson Alvarez, catcher Jeff Mathis and a non-prospect. The Marlins did not get Travis d’Arnaud, Aaron Sanchez, Noah Syndergaard or Anthony Gose, the Blue Jays’ four best prospects.”
Jeffrey Loria also defended the trade in November, which made headlines at the time and drew immediate criticism from baseball followers.
Another revelation from last week generated further criticism for Jeffrey Loria. Speaking to the New York Times, Reyes said that not only did Loria give him no prior warning that he could be traded, but the owner also suggested just days before the trade that Reyes buy a house in Miami.