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The Marlins obviously weren’t prepared for a sellout on Opening Day

Apr 2, 2014, 11:03 AM EDT

david samson getty Getty Images

The Marlins had over 35,000 people in their ballpark on Opening Day. And some of those 35,000 apparently faced traffic issues getting to the park and long lines at concession stands and poor service. As this has turned into talk radio fodder in Miami, Marlins president David Samson has decided that the best response to all of this is defensiveness.

He disputes the wait times people claim to have faced at concessions. He criticizes the routes they took to get to the stadium. He equates long lines at the ballpark with long lines at Disney World and tells fans, well, that’s what you signed up for. He then plugs MLB’s At Bat app and tells people to download it and order food with it. He also notes that even though he has amazing parking and amazing seats and Miami Heat games that he has to get to the arena early because of crowds, so Marlins fans should too.

I am 100% certain, given how people love to complain, that the worst horror stories about what happened at the ballpark called in to talk radio the other day were extreme examples and/or embellished to maximize suffering. People are just jerks like that. At the same time, I am pretty certain that a business owner who does not at least pretend to acknowledge that there were some problems and pretend to have some empathy for the customers is kind of a jerk.

  1. Alex K - Apr 2, 2014 at 11:08 AM

    Only being called “kind of a jerk” is the highest praise anyone in the Marlins front office has received in months!

  2. lessick - Apr 2, 2014 at 11:09 AM

    Vote him off the island!

  3. Professor Fate - Apr 2, 2014 at 11:19 AM

    The Marlins are the poster company for how to make money in spite of your own incompetence.

    • Old Gator - Apr 2, 2014 at 11:46 AM

      True, but not all of us can profit by the chapter on how to buy off expensive politicians.

      • Professor Fate - Apr 2, 2014 at 12:50 PM

        Wait, are you saying the traditional American narrative that anyone can work hard and become rich (and president and a movie star and immortal) isn’t true?!

      • Old Gator - Apr 2, 2014 at 2:48 PM

        I would only repeat what the immortal (though dead) Pat Paulsen said during a campaign stop at the University of Macondo in 1968 when he was running for vice president on Dick Gregory’s presidential ticket. Quote: “America is still the only country in the world where any little boy can grow up to be president or, if he never grows up, vice-president.”

  4. tfbuckfutter - Apr 2, 2014 at 11:23 AM

    Is Richie Incognito still in Miami?

    Because someone really should defecate in Samson’s mouth.

    • thedoubleentandres - Apr 2, 2014 at 11:49 AM

      Thats my Nagenta!

      • tfbuckfutter - Apr 2, 2014 at 11:55 AM

      • thedoubleentandres - Apr 2, 2014 at 12:00 PM

    • Professor Fate - Apr 2, 2014 at 12:55 PM

      No, he’s in Kansas to accept the First Annual Fred Phelps Humanitarian of the Year Award.

    • historiophiliac - Apr 2, 2014 at 1:52 PM

      I don’t know what this means and I don’t want to know.

  5. shaggylocks - Apr 2, 2014 at 11:23 AM

    I love the bit about having amazing parking and seat for Miami Heat games, but still needing to get there early. Poor guy! He knows what you’re going through: he suffers just like you! He didn’t even mention how his chauffeur will sometimes try to make small talk on the ride over, despite the fact that he is very clearly pretending to read the newspaper! So quit your whining about the long lines, people: it’s tough out there for everyone.

  6. sdelmonte - Apr 2, 2014 at 11:29 AM

    What is with people named David Samson? The appointee at the center of the Chris Christie GW Bridge Scandal is also named David Samson, and he looks just as rotten.

    • Old Gator - Apr 2, 2014 at 11:49 AM

      “David Samson” is a congenital name. Scientists at the Center for Disease Control have isolated the David Samson gene (DS13BS) which results from prematurely unraveling telomeres on the chromosome for empathy, the same problem that underlies most forms of inherited sociopathy.

      • tfbuckfutter - Apr 2, 2014 at 12:46 PM

        Also present are elevated levels of AS-HLE

      • historiophiliac - Apr 2, 2014 at 1:55 PM

        I think future research will demonstrate that it’s the “David” and not the “Samson” aspect that has failed to evolve properly.

      • Old Gator - Apr 2, 2014 at 2:51 PM

        If I’m not mistaken, the “Samson” chromosomes are also contributors to alopecia. They have to be activated by contact with female pheromones, though.

  7. beefytrout - Apr 2, 2014 at 11:41 AM

    BeefyTrout’s 2 Point Plan to being a successful MLB front office executive:

    1) See what the Marlins are doing.
    2) Do the exact opposite.

  8. happytwinsfan - Apr 2, 2014 at 11:43 AM

    from what i understand he is right in thinking that he doesn’t need to do anything about their inability to accommodate large crowds. marlins fans will solve his dilemma for him.

    • Old Gator - Apr 2, 2014 at 11:50 AM

      They already began to solve it last night; attendance was down nearly 60% from opening night. Just you wait.

      • historiophiliac - Apr 2, 2014 at 2:24 PM

        I see that the Feesh are recycling last year’s slogan: It’s Not Us, It’s You.

      • Old Gator - Apr 2, 2014 at 2:51 PM

        A control group showered and still smelled bad. No, it was the Feesh.

  9. xpensivewinos - Apr 2, 2014 at 11:54 AM

    Truly shocking that a douche bag owner would have a douche bag running his team.

    Seems fairly predictable, no???

    • groupofsevenrules - Apr 2, 2014 at 12:14 PM

      Moreso when his pet douchebag is also his stepson. Stepson’s mummy cut big douchebag loose but little douchebag remained acutely aware of what side of the bread was buttered and stuck with sortadaddy.

  10. renaado - Apr 2, 2014 at 12:01 PM

    Sellouts or near sellouts will only probably happen when Jose Fernandez was starting though.

    • elpendejo59 - Apr 2, 2014 at 12:07 PM

      No, they won’t. Outside of Opening Day, they don’t draw, no matter what. Also, there was a pretty sweet Groupon- buy 1 get 1 free tickets, with another 2 free vouchers for any other game in the next 30 days.

      • renaado - Apr 2, 2014 at 12:25 PM

        Oh.. So it’s more of like an event i see? Thanks for the info man.

      • Professor Fate - Apr 2, 2014 at 12:57 PM

        Yes, renaado, in the same sense that a train wreck in progress is an “event.” Folks just wanted to see the “before” picture.

  11. djpostl - Apr 2, 2014 at 12:16 PM

    It’s a wonder this douchenozzle was the 1st guy voted off the island…

  12. jeffbbf - Apr 2, 2014 at 12:19 PM

    Before you crucify the guy, read the story – don’t just rely on the slanted, page-view pandering writer of the blog. He was quoted multiple times stating that he felt the frustrations of the fans, and that he was sorry that some fans did not have the perfect experience. He then goes on to offer some reasons why things happened the way they did (the majority of fans arriving late, an accident near the stadium that slowed traffic before the game, lane closures after the game due to the end of the Heat game, and yes, some noted incompetence with the concession workers). He follows with some possible solutions for people who want to avoid a similar experience: leave earlier, take alternate routes, etc. Finally, he stated that the team received 47 fan complaints about problems during the game, which is much better than 2012. He should have said that the Marlins would be addressing those complaints, but did not. It’s a live interview and nobody’s perfect.

    • stlouis1baseball - Apr 2, 2014 at 12:48 PM

      Jeff…
      You can see RageFest2014 is well under way.
      Nevertheless…solid, realistic, thought provoking post.

    • Old Gator - Apr 2, 2014 at 12:51 PM

      Fair enough – but Samson also says, and I quote from the article,”“One of the things we talk to our fans about is don’t just take 836 [the Dolphin Expressway] to 12th Avenue,” Samson said. “We tell people there are so many different ways to get to this ballpark. But everyone was taking the same way. So there was so much more load into the area from two choke points.”

      That’s always been the case. But all of last season and so far this season I have never heard these people recommend or comment on any such thing. I call bullcoprolite on this bit.

      I also question what lane closures on I-95 south of the 836/95 intersection had to do with the traffic problems. The vast majority of people who would use I-95 would access it from 836, not drive crosstown to try to access it from anywhere near the Arena. And anyone going south on the short stretch of I-95 south of downtown would use Calle Ocho to get to it – well south of the Heat-related lane closures. None of that stuff washes.

      The problem is – and you can go all the way back to the blogs Craig put up when I took him to see Macondo Bananan Massacre Field while it was still under construction – that these crooks who own and run the team apparently didn’t give enough of a squat about these “choke points” to insist on any improvement of the exits from the 836 to the stadium. Nothing was changed about them until the local expressway authority decided to replace the adjacent toll booths with electronic toll cameras, and the changes they’re making in the road configuration still don’t address traffic issues stemming from the stadium. Craig spotted that and wrote about it three and a half years ago. You could look it up.

      Compare it to the complete overhaul of the southern end of the Florida Turnpike to provide direct ramps and wider exits around the then Joe Robbie stadium for the Dolfeens. The Dolfeens insisted on that. Scrooge and the Chihuahua just didn’t give a steaming dump.

      • dowhatifeellike - Apr 2, 2014 at 1:22 PM

        I’ll give them the benefit of the doubt… they probably cared until someone asked them to pony up some $ for the improvements. Probably.

  13. dowhatifeellike - Apr 2, 2014 at 1:14 PM

    The Marlins aren’t spending money on players.
    The Marlins aren’t spending money on concessions workers.
    The Marlins aren’t spending money their new stadium.

    The Marlins are spending money on Heat tickets.

  14. xpensivewinos - Apr 2, 2014 at 1:31 PM

    Ah yes, but while standing in those long lines, fans were distracted by their outrage at the players the Red Sox decided to bring to that spring training game last month.

    I’m sure their anger was directed at more important things like that…..

  15. sportsfan18 - Apr 2, 2014 at 2:28 PM

    no wonder Loria hasn’t fired this guy! loria couldn’t have said it better himself…

    • Old Gator - Apr 2, 2014 at 2:56 PM

      As groupofseven pointed out, “this guy” is his stepson. Well, ex-stepson, I guess you’d have to say. Even so, maybe they think that blood is thicker than water, you know, like Billy Bob Thornton and Angelina Jolie.

  16. plmathfoto - Apr 2, 2014 at 3:37 PM

    The Marlins have a history of opening day incompetence. I few years ago, they ran out of programs, hot dogs, etc very quickly. They are very poorly run, that’s the bottom line here.

  17. rcali - Apr 2, 2014 at 3:53 PM

    Was it the Marlins that ran out of Hot Dogs on opening day last year…or something like that?

  18. disgracedfury - Apr 2, 2014 at 4:21 PM

    The MArlins have a horrible product and they want you to spend your money unhappily and unlike the Yankees who will kiss your @ss the Marlins say “stop complaining”.

    Yes the Astros(who purposely lost last year) and Marlins are the problem with small market teams.They want you to be loyal and yet won’t put a great product.Lucky they still have Jose Fernadez and Mike Stanton to look forward too if your a Marlins fan.

  19. jayquintana - Apr 2, 2014 at 4:54 PM

    I dunno, the “it’s your fault, not ours, deal with it” approach to customers doesn’t strike me as a winning strategy.

  20. Robert - Apr 2, 2014 at 8:57 PM

    Charlotte Marlins 2015.

  21. insidefastball - Apr 3, 2014 at 1:55 AM

    Let’s avoid calling that game a sell-out as well. There were hundreds of empty seats in the upper bowl…..if not a couple thousand

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