Aug 14, 2011, 3:23 PM EDT
The Marlins demoted 23-year-old outfielder and outspoken tweeter Logan Morrison to Triple-A New Orleans on Saturday night, pointing to his recent offensive struggles as the reason for the move.
Joe Capozzi of the Palm Beach Post later deduced that a series off-field issues also played a factor.
Morrison, a fan-favorite of a rare degree, had a mixup last week with the Florida Marlins Community Foundation involving the cancellation of a charity bowling event. The foundation didn’t buy enough bowling lanes at a local alley in advance, and LoMo was upset about having to disappoint excited fans.
Aiming to make a statement, Morrison then refused to show his face at a photo session with season ticket holders Saturday evening at Sun Life Stadium. The Marlins optioned him to the minors late Saturday night.
Morrison told reporters he felt “freaking heart broken and disappointed” at hearing that he’d been sent down, and that he was just trying to stand up for “what’s right” with his protest of the photo opp.
Marlins president Larry Beinfest offered a sort of response Sunday afternoon to Capozzi, who shared the gist of the quotes in a block of tweets:
Morrison has posted an ugly .200 batting average and .283 on-base percentage since the All-Star break. But he was beginning to show signs of life, flashing a .250/.341/.444 triple slash line across 41 plate appearances in the month of August. If the demotion was all about performance, the timing can be called odd.
This was about quieting the kid who has taken subtle jabs at teammates, and who fumed publicly at the firing of hitting coach John Mallee. Morrison has a likable personality. He’s given away hundreds of tickets through his Twitter account, and earned fans around the country — not just in south Florida. But he’s also a bit brash for a 23-year-old sophomore, and it sounds as though his outspokenness nicked an ego or two in Marlins’ front office. So Beinfest and Co. used his recent offensive slump as an excuse to send a message.
There’s no telling where this saga goes next. If Morrison isn’t the backing down type, it could get ugly.
He has the perfect venue, with nearly 60,000 Twitter followers, to make his thoughts known while experiencing the lesser quality of life on the Triple-A level. We’ll certainly be paying attention.
UPDATE, 5:01 PM: Morrison is considering filing a grievance against the Marlins.
- And That Happened: Thursday’s scores and highlights 24
- 2015 MLB Trade Deadline Tracker 5
- Giants to acquire Mike Leake from Reds 26
- Astros acquire Carlos Gomez and Mike Fiers from Brewers 43
- Pirates bolster bullpen, pick up Joakim Soria from Tigers 11
- The extraordinarily odd, 13-player Dodgers-Marlins-Braves trade is done 62
- Blue Jays acquire David Price from the Tigers 111
- Both the Phillies and the Rangers did well in the Cole Hamels trade 73
- The MLBPA is considering withholding cooperation with ESPN, Fox over Colin Cowherd’s comments (157)
- The Cubs are in discussions with the Phillies on Cole Hamels (146)
- Major League Baseball rips Colin Cowherd in an official statement (123)
- Blue Jays acquire David Price from the Tigers (111)
- Rangers land ace left-hander Cole Hamels from Phillies (106)