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Friday, October 27, 2017

Miami Herald: Good-bye Mr Marlin

Jeff follows Jeffrey out the door.

Jeff Conine, who served as a special assistant to former team president David Samson, said he turned down an offer from new ownership to remain with the organization in what would have been a sharply diminished role at lower pay….

Conine is a South Florida baseball icon, an original Marlin and member of both World Series teams.

PLUS: some random gossip about Mattingly’s future with the club, how much a special assistant makes, how many Yankees are going to follow Derek to South New… I mean Florida.

fra paolo Posted: October 27, 2017 at 11:04 AM | 42 comment(s) Login to Bookmark
  Tags: marlins

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   1. Lest we forget Posted: October 27, 2017 at 01:08 PM (#5563591)
the Derek Jeter victory lap continues ....
   2. Renegade (((JE))) Posted: October 27, 2017 at 01:16 PM (#5563597)
Now who do we need to call to get rid of Marlins Man?
   3. Lest we forget Posted: October 27, 2017 at 01:20 PM (#5563602)
Derek Jeter, duh
   4. Tin Angel Posted: October 27, 2017 at 01:20 PM (#5563603)
Seems like an odd way to cut costs...though I'm also not sure how much people like Andre Dawson and Jeff Conine help the organization/get people in the seats.
   5. Moses Taylor, aka Hambone Fakenameington Posted: October 27, 2017 at 01:24 PM (#5563612)
I keep thinking Mr. Marlin is a mascot every time one of these stories is titled this way.
   6. PreservedFish Posted: October 27, 2017 at 01:29 PM (#5563620)
I dunno, maybe it's small potatoes but they were likely paying Conine $100k to do nothing of value. The article makes it sounds like he had carte blanche to basically hang around the place without any delineated responsibilities, whether it was in uniform at batting practice or in the war room on draft day. The new regime offered him half that to do the one job that he's explicitly qualified to do, community outreach, with much reduced hours. I would have done exactly the same thing.
   7. Nasty Nate Posted: October 27, 2017 at 01:32 PM (#5563624)
I keep thinking Mr. Marlin is a mascot every time one of these stories is titled this way.
I thought it was about Marlins Man.
   8. snapper (history's 42nd greatest monster) Posted: October 27, 2017 at 01:36 PM (#5563630)
Seems like an odd way to cut costs...though I'm also not sure how much people like Andre Dawson and Jeff Conine help the organization/get people in the seats.

The impact this sort of thing has is on employee loyalty. In any organization, if people see long term employees being treated badly, their loyalty to the organization is lessened.
   9. Lest we forget Posted: October 27, 2017 at 01:39 PM (#5563632)
That's it. C'mon.

You want the good feeling? Pay the 400,000 to the 4 dudes. You only want to pay 200,000?

Start your career as a private Dick.
   10. PreservedFish Posted: October 27, 2017 at 01:44 PM (#5563636)
The impact this sort of thing has is on employee loyalty.


But if these are worthless sinecures, eliminating them might increase the loyalty of good employees. "Finally this organization isn't just a gravy train for a bunch of losers."
   11. snapper (history's 42nd greatest monster) Posted: October 27, 2017 at 01:46 PM (#5563640)
But if these are worthless sinecures, eliminating them might increase the loyalty of good employees. "Finally this organization isn't just a gravy train for a bunch of losers."

Maybe. But I doubt employees look on a longtime franchise icon, and a HoFer as "losers".

if you choose to get rid of employees the moment they makes more money than they produce, don't be surprised if your employee tend to bolt the second anyone offers them a little more money.
   12. Jose is an Absurd Doubles Machine Posted: October 27, 2017 at 01:47 PM (#5563642)
Does Marlin Man have many jerseys or just one? If it's just one how often does he launder it?
   13. PreservedFish Posted: October 27, 2017 at 01:52 PM (#5563649)
I dunno, they might. I can easily imagine that it would be annoying to be doing your job and have Jeff Conine, who has no real job, just roll up straight from the 18th hole and start acting like he runs the place. He's Jeff Conine, not Sandy Koufax.

Seriously snapper, pretend you buy a company and you bring in your own people. But there's this guy that is a holdover from the previous ownership that just shows up to your meetings willy-nilly, and you're frankly not even sure what he does. You'd get rid of him in a second.
   14. snapper (history's 42nd greatest monster) Posted: October 27, 2017 at 01:56 PM (#5563656)
Seriously snapper, pretend you buy a company and you bring in your own people. But there's this guy that is a holdover from the previous ownership that just shows up to your meetings willy-nilly, and you're frankly not even sure what he does. You'd get rid of him in a second.

I wouldn't let him show up to meetings willy-nilly. I'd give him an actual job to do.

The right way to do this was to actually define Conine's responsibilities, and then let him quit if he didn't like it.

I don't think ruthlessly efficient management styles work. People are emotional, not cool calculating profit-maximizers.
   15. PreservedFish Posted: October 27, 2017 at 01:59 PM (#5563660)
That's what they did. But they also reduced both his hours and his compensation.

It's no surprise that Conine didn't accept, of course, which may well have been the plan all along.
   16. Bring Me the Head of Alfredo Griffin (Vlad) Posted: October 27, 2017 at 02:00 PM (#5563664)
From the headline, I genuinely thought they were replacing Billy the Marlin with a different mascot, which seemed odd.
   17. snapper (history's 42nd greatest monster) Posted: October 27, 2017 at 02:02 PM (#5563668)
That's what they did. But they also reduced both his hours and his compensation.


That second sentence invalidates the first.
   18. Jose is an Absurd Doubles Machine Posted: October 27, 2017 at 02:05 PM (#5563673)
I dunno, they might. I can easily imagine that it would be annoying to be doing your job and have Jeff Conine, who has no real job, just roll up straight from the 18th hole and start acting like he runs the place. He's Jeff Conine, not Sandy Koufax.


From afar I would have assumed that Conine's job was to be Jeff Conine and smile and be nice and make people think happy thoughts about the Marlins. I know the Red Sox have all kinds of ex-players floating around doing different things with no obvious real job description. Pesky was a great example, I assume he was getting paid by the organization right until the end and all he did was make people feel good about the Red Sox.

$200,000 is really chump change for an MLB team. I'd be surprised if this really worth it to the Marlins.
   19. PreservedFish Posted: October 27, 2017 at 02:10 PM (#5563680)
They might see a value in burning bridges here and cutting obvious links to the Loria organization.
   20. Lassus Posted: October 27, 2017 at 02:11 PM (#5563682)
Maybe he'll be the new Yankees manager.
   21. The Yankee Clapper Posted: October 27, 2017 at 02:11 PM (#5563685)
I wouldn't let him show up to meetings willy-nilly. I'd give him an actual job to do.

They offered Conine a job, doing something that might make use of his Mr. Marlins mystique, in community relations. He didn't want to do that. I can certainly see why Conine preferred a "broader role" appearing in uniform for batting practice and kibitzing everyone in the organization, but as #6 said, there's no indication that's at all helpful to the franchise. And let's keep this in perspective - this isn't like the Braves cut ties to Hank Aaron - Conine's perceived franchise icon status is just another indication of how much player turnover accompanied the prior regimes.
   22. Jeff Frances the Mute Posted: October 27, 2017 at 02:27 PM (#5563719)
They offered Conine a job, doing something that might make use of his Mr. Marlins mystique, in community relations. He didn't want to do that. I can certainly see why Conine preferred a "broader role" appearing in uniform for batting practice and kibitzing everyone in the organization, but as #6 said, there's no indication that's at all helpful to the franchise. And let's keep this in perspective - this isn't like the Braves cut ties to Hank Aaron - Conine's perceived franchise icon status is just another indication of how much player turnover accompanied the prior regimes.


He can do all of the work that he did before for half the money that he was previously making. As a bonus, they ban him from all the fun stuff on the field before games. It is hard to believe that he wasn't thrilled at this reassignment. It is almost like Jeter did this to get him to quit and say it was Conine's decision.
   23. PreservedFish Posted: October 27, 2017 at 02:30 PM (#5563725)
#22 - that's not fair at all.
   24. snapper (history's 42nd greatest monster) Posted: October 27, 2017 at 02:46 PM (#5563740)
#22 - that's not fair at all.

It's an exaggeration for effect, but it's not unfair.

Although, once you've said you're going to cut his pay 50%, the rest is largely moot.
   25. The Yankee Clapper Posted: October 27, 2017 at 03:01 PM (#5563752)
Does anyone expect another MLB team to scoop up Jeff Conine now that he is available? Or that he would even apply? Unless I'm missing something, his entire "value" is in the community relations role. He also does some broadcasting work, which may continue, but that's technically not as a team employee.
   26. PreservedFish Posted: October 27, 2017 at 03:16 PM (#5563766)

Although, once you've said you're going to cut his pay 50%, the rest is largely moot.


Even if you cut his hours 50%?
   27. Walt Davis Posted: October 27, 2017 at 04:18 PM (#5563823)
I'm sure Derek will hire Luis Sojo as special assistant.
   28. The Duke Posted: October 27, 2017 at 07:55 PM (#5563926)
Jeff Conine is the definition of an iconic Marlin? I guess I’m spoiled here in St. Louis. It would be like Kenny Reitz being the face of the Cards. ( I like reitz btw)
   29. Walks Clog Up the Bases Posted: October 28, 2017 at 01:16 AM (#5564241)
Others beat me to it, but it's an indicator how dearth the Marlins are of any real heritage that after 25 years of existence, Jeff Conine is thought of as the all-time face of the franchise.
   30. Russ Posted: October 28, 2017 at 07:12 AM (#5564249)
Others beat me to it, but it's an indicator how dearth the Marlins are of any real heritage that after 25 years of existence, Jeff Conine is thought of as the all-time face of the franchise.


Conine is second in games played for the franchise. Luis Castillo is first, by about 110 games. That's all this is based on. Conine is in the top 10 of most other franchise categories (Castillo is for things generally related to playing time, but that's it), but I would argue that games played (especially if concentrated during periods of franchise success) is the key measure by which FotF is judged.

For the historical franchises:

Pittsburgh: Clemente and Wagner are tied, Clemente gets the truncation correction.
St. Louis: Musial
Cubs: Banks
Red Sox: Yastrzemski
Giants: Willie Mays
Dodgers: Zach Wheat... ok, maybe it doesn't work for all of them, but probably due to the preponderance of good pitchers and lack of hitters who played lots of games (Russell is second, Reese 3rd, Hodges 4th). For pitchers, most games started: Sutton, Drysdale, Koufax. A who's who of potential Dodger FotF's.

But..

Yankees? Mr. Derek Jeter

For the newer franchises:

Arizona: Luis Gonzalez? No, but looking at pitchers Games Started: Randy Johnson
Colorado: Todd Helton
Tampa: Longoria
Seattle: Edgar


I would think that the rule for FotF: "Most Games Played By A Hitter Or Games Started By a Pitcher" pretty much applies everywhere, where the person perceived to be the better player wins, unless extenuating circumstances (Clemente death, Koufax short career). Interesting that Luis Castillo doesn't have the same perception as Conine...
   31. Leroy Kincaid Posted: October 28, 2017 at 11:33 AM (#5564305)
I keep thinking Mr. Marlin is a mascot every time one of these stories is titled this way.


My thoughts exactly.
   32. fra paolo Posted: October 28, 2017 at 01:22 PM (#5564342)
Others beat me to it, but it's an indicator how dearth the Marlins are of any real heritage that after 25 years of existence, Jeff Conine is thought of as the all-time face of the franchise.

'Face of the Franchise' strikes me as a relative title. It's a living player still working with the franchise and with a lengthy career with the club.

In Detroit it is so obviously Al Kaline at the moment. But when I was eleven, and Kaline was still playing, it might not have been. If he were to drop dead today, it might become Kirk Gibson. Or Alan Trammell.

For the Marlins, free agency and firesales have hampered the emergence of similar figures. Conine had as good a claim as anyone, and better than almost everyone. But, as a thing, 'Face of the Franchise' is harder to accomplish nowadays because, like only Nixon could go to China, even Justin Verlander can be traded.

In that sense, the Marlins represent The Face of the Future.
   33. cardsfanboy Posted: October 28, 2017 at 01:36 PM (#5564344)

Even if you cut his hours 50%?


But they were cutting the "fun" hours. I mean if someone paid you $100 for an hour, and for half of the time you will be getting a bj and the other half of the time a punch in the gut....is it worth to quit that job for a $50 a half hour job where you get a punch in the gut.
   34. The Duke Posted: October 28, 2017 at 04:12 PM (#5564392)
Bill Clinton had that job description - let’s ask him
   35. Leroy Kincaid Posted: October 28, 2017 at 05:56 PM (#5564427)
I mean if someone paid you $100 for an hour, and for half of the time you will be getting a bj and the other half of the time a punch in the gut


I think that's how Houdini died.
   36. David Nieporent (now, with children) Posted: October 29, 2017 at 12:05 AM (#5564753)
I mean if someone paid you $100 for an hour, and for half of the time you will be getting a bj and the other half of the time a punch in the gut...
I find your ideas intriguing and would like to subscribe to your newsletter.
   37. fra paolo Posted: October 29, 2017 at 11:53 AM (#5564804)
   38. SoSH U at work Posted: October 29, 2017 at 04:25 PM (#5564925)
Conine is second in games played for the franchise. Luis Castillo is first, by about 110 games. That's all this is based on.

Conine's status is based on few things. He was on the first Marlins team, the one before the franchise began to piss on its fans. He played all 162 games.

He was the only guy on the roster on Day 1 to be with the team when they won the title in 1997 (Sheffield joined the club later in the maiden season).

In 2003, the Marlins reacquired Conine down the stretch, and they won the title again, making him one of two guys to play on both title teams (with Castillo, who didn't play in the 1997 postseason). Moreover, he rejoined the Marlins, which no one ever does.

   39. Bote Man Posted: October 29, 2017 at 04:46 PM (#5564953)
Conine the Barbarian is the FotF because the team says he is. Or was.
   40. Jose is an Absurd Doubles Machine Posted: October 29, 2017 at 04:52 PM (#5564964)
As a Red Sox fan if we had only existed since 1993 then the FotF would probably be Wakefield or Varitek and I don’t think Connie is materially different from those two guys. He was a very good player (114 OPS+ for the Marlins) and as SoSH notes he has remained with the club through peaks and valleys. I don’t think his status is something to be dismissed.
   41. The Duke Posted: October 29, 2017 at 05:16 PM (#5564978)
Wouldn’t it have to be Big Papi? If anyone is the FOTF, it must be Ortiz
   42. Jose is an Absurd Doubles Machine Posted: October 29, 2017 at 05:25 PM (#5564985)
Maybe but he just retired. I feel like the role Conine has is more Player Emeritus. Wake and Varitek are more analogous to Conine than Ortiz. They are always around, doing TV work, showing up at team events, that kind of thing. I would argue Ortiz is more equivalent to Stanton when it comes to the Marlins.

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