Marlins' future direction could hinge on Mattingly

Team president Samson suggests jobs could be on the line if manager carousel continues

February 20th, 2016

MIAMI -- There's confidence and excitement around the Marlins as they enter Spring Training. But make no mistake, there also is a level of urgency surrounding the club that hasn't had a winning season since 2009.

Team president David Samson drove that point home at FanFest on Saturday at Marlins Park when he volunteered the fact his job could be on the line if the team continues to falter.

After going through seven different managers since 2010, the Marlins hired Don Mattingly, a proven winner with the Dodgers, to bring stability.

"We go into this season with a little bit different mindset," Samson said. "We go in with the way Don Mattingly has set the table for us. The way he set it to the front office and his players is, he did not come to Miami to lose."

The Marlins last made the postseason in 2003, their second World Series championship season. In 2015, Miami came into the season with high expectations, but underwent a managerial change when Mike Redmond was replaced by Dan Jennings. The club finished 71-91, showing signs of life down the stretch by winning 17 of its last 29.

Mattingly takes over for Jennings, who now is a special assistant with the Nationals.

"Having some continuity on the managerial side, it would be very nice for this to be the last manager of my career," Samson said. "He very well may be, either way."

Samson added he and president of baseball operations Michael Hill have already been told by owner Jeffrey Loria that the managerial carousel needs to stop.

"Mike Hill and I were both told that, specifically," Samson said. "That, 'This will be the last managerial hire of your career with the Marlins. So make it a good one.'

"Having Donnie here, that was the best move of the offseason, in my mind. And keeping our core and making sure that our core was evaluated correctly."