There's a new sheriff in Miami...and he wears a fake mustache.

  

In a stunning move, the Florida Marlins sent Fredi Gonzalez and two other coaches to the unemployment line on Wednesday. The Marlins moved to 34-36 after a Tuesday night win in Baltimore, but team owner Jeffrey Loria seems to think that Gonzalez is the reason the Fish are trailing the Braves by 7.5 games in the National League East. Also getting the axe were bench coach Carlos Tosca and hitting coach Jim Presley. Edwin Rodriguez, the organization’s Triple-A manager in New Orleans for the past two seasons, will take over as interim manager.  

All of the rumors are bubbling that the next manager for your Marlins will be the former manager for the New York Mets: Bobby Valentine. Valentine really gets an interesting response from fans. Many hate his guts. Some seem to really like his style. No matter what, he is a pretty cooky manager. The question is, can he turn the Marlins into winners?  

  

As far as those with high opinions of Valentine, “He’s A-plus as far as being a manager, knowing the game, and handling people,” said former Marlins pitching coach Rich Donnelly, who served in the same role when Valentine arrived in Texas in 1985. “I don’t know his IQ, but it’s probably pretty high. He sees things clearer than a lot of people.”  

But where his supporters see a sharp mind and a capable leader, Valentine’s harshest critics see another side: a know-it-all whose certainty that his way is the only way leads to inevitable strife with his superiors. 

prma