When Mark Walter and Guggenheim Baseball Management purchased the Los Angeles Dodgers, they embraced the long and storied history of the franchise, and of Los Angeles. They welcomed the continued presence in various capacities within the organization of team legends of the past, expanding and promoting the duties and exposure of people like Tommy Lasorda, Sandy Koufax, Don Newcombe, Fernando Valenzuela, and a host of others. Walter began his lead ownership position by taking a low profile for himself, letting others retain the spotlight, and in the intervening years, he has not changed that approach. The LA Dodgers remain immensely popular, with sell-out attendance and billion-dollar
broadcasting deals, fueled by not just excellent management decisions but also by equally successful personnel moves, which now have them in a World Series that the two previous ownerships could never accomplish.
The key there, of course, is that Walter has no overpowering ego that demands attention. In fact, most Dodgers’ fans when asked would not even know his name. He lets Andrew Friedman, Magic Johnson, Dave Roberts, Clayton Kershaw and Justin Turner get the headlines, and he stays in the background.
Imagine if new Dodgers’ ownership came in and immediately fired Tommy Lasorda, Sandy Koufax, Don Newcombe and Fernando Valenzuela in order to focus the team spotlight on that new owner, someone who already has fame and fortune, but who apparently is unsatisfied that perhaps a lone fan living under a bride by the river doesn’t yet know just who is now the boss in charge?
Well, that is the situation now in Miami, where a fleet of giant moving trucks has been hired to transport the massive ego of Derek Jeter to the Marlin’s offices.
Before the ink was even dry, Jeter’s first orders of business were to fire not just long-time team employees, and Baseball Hall of Fame members, Andre Dawson and Tony Perez, along with legendary former team manager Jack McKeon, but also the unquestioned “Mr. Marlin”, Jeff Conine, who was a member of the franchises’ two World Championship teams and as a long-time team employee has been the unquestioned face of the franchise, a position undoubtedly now wanted by Jeter for himself.
Jeter’s been in the news for who he’s fired, but little has been released about anybody that
he may have hired. One has to wonder whether or not he intends to be his own General Manager, and maybe even field manager. And just maybe, he might even get fitted for a Marlins’ uniform and become a pinch hitter as well.
Don’t put any of that past the new “Mr.Ego”.