Last year the Blue Jays played a weekend series against the Phillies in Philadelphia despite it being originally scheduled to occur in Toronto. The reasoning behind the move was that the G20 Summit was going to take place in downtown Toronto on the same weekend, and there would be no guarantee for the safety of fans travelling to the game.
Any ire that local fans felt over the prospect of not getting to see former Blue Jay Roy Halladay ply his trade for another organization quickly turned to concern when the downtown core of our city was attacked by a horrible combination of vandalism and police brutality.
The Florida Marlins recently decided to follow the Jays example by scheduling their upcoming weekend series with the Mariners in Seattle instead of Miami. While the Blue Jays justified their decision to play a home series away around the the threat of violence, the Marlins are playing games on the West Coast instead of at home because of an influx of middle age nostalgia and sentimentalized stadium rock. That’s right, U2 needs the Sun Life Stadium this weekend to build its stage for a Wednesday night concert. I’m not a contractor, but I’m pretty sure subdivisions are built in less time than that.
At least Marlins third baseman Wes Helms sees the bright side:
It’s definitely going to be weird to play a home game in front of 30,000 Seattle fans. The positive is we’re going to have more people there, and we know we’re not going to have any delays. The weather up there is awesome. It’s not going to be 100 degrees with humidity.
As for logistics, the Marlins will use the visitors’ clubhouse, wear alternate black jerseys with home white pants, not use a designated hitter and split the money earned at the gate with the Mariners. Gate receipts at the Major League level are typically split up with 66% going to the home team and 34% going into a pool which is split evenly between all teams. I’d assume that both the Mariners and Marlins would draw 33%, perhaps with some considerations for operating costs being given to the Mariners.
Sadly, unless the organization makes a special request to Major League Baseball, Florida Marlins fans may never get another chance to welcome Miguel Olivo in a Mariner’s uniform.