What do you do when you’re the most hated man in pro sports, and even sportswriters can’t find anything nice to say about you and your $500 million stadium subsidy? You dip into your checkbook and take out a full-page ad in local papers, of course, which is just what Miami Marlins owner Jeffrey Loria did yesterday. Among the points that Loria saw fit to make in his paid political announcement:
- The trade that sent nearly every veteran player on the roster with any talent to the Toronto Blue Jays brought back some good young players, and anybody who says otherwise is a “naysayer” who didn’t like it when the Marlins signed Pudge Rodriguez either.
- As for whether taxpayers are paying for the Marlins’ stadium, “It ain’t true, folks.” That’s because “the majority of public funding came from hotel taxes, the burden of which is incurred by tourists who are visiting our city, NOT the resident taxpayers.” (Of course, those same hotel taxes could have been spent on something else to benefit taxpayers if they hadn’t been used on a stadium — or, if you prefer, could have been lowered to make Miami hotels more competitive and boost the local economy. But those are the sort of points that you don’t have to mention when you bought the page of newspaper your message is appearing on.)
- Marlins Park is a “crown jewel” that has “won over twenty design and architecture awards.” Here, look: excellence in both drywall and stucco!
- The Marlins won the World Series in 2003, so quit yer yapping.
Loria did get everyone’s attention, at least, and for once not because three people showed up to buy tickets or one of their only good young players hit one of their other only good young players in the head. Though a large part of that is likely only because sportswriters know that Loria makes such a good punching bag.