Ozzie Guillen came to Miami as the new Marlins manager just over a year ago. What followed was a Fidel Castro controversy, a lot of odd outbursts, and yet another season of typical Marlins disappointment. Now, with three years and $7.5 million left on his contract, the Marlins have officially fired Guillen.
"After careful consideration following the disappointment of the 2012 season, we decided to dismiss Ozzie," said Marlins Prez Larry Beinfast, according to Sun Sentinel reporter Mike Berardino's Twitter.
"Our hope is that a new manager, along with roster improvements, will restore a winning culture," he added.
Yes, yes, that great culture of winning that the Marlins have enjoyed for, uh, two of their twenty seasons.
Guillen was brought in over the offseason from the Chicago White Sox (where he won a World Series) and was part of a vast image overhaul for the struggling team. The team had a new stadium, a new name, new colors and uniforms, and a handful of new star players. The idea was that it would all spark new fan enthusiasm and success on the field.
Though, just days into the season Guillen told Time magazine that he "respect[s] Fidel Castro," which is just about the worst thing you can say in Miami.
He was suspended for five games. The Marlins however did enjoy some early success. They posted the best record in the MLB for the month of May, but things quickly fell apart over a slow, painful summer. The Marlins ended up 69-93 this season; their worst finish since 1999.
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Update: Guillen was just traveling through Europe with Marlins players Ricky Nolasco and Giancarlo Stanton. Nolasco apparently wasn't pleased with the news, but has since deleted the tweet: