David Samson Draws Ire for Criticizing Miami Marlins | Miami New Times


Marlins Fans Call Out David Samson for Gaslighting Team's Fanbase

Marlins fans haven't taken too kindly to David Samson's gig criticizing the team he is blamed for wrecking.
Billy the Marlin looks on from the empty stands during the fifth inning between the Miami Marlins and the Atlanta Braves at Marlins Park on August 16, 2020.
Billy the Marlin looks on from the empty stands during the fifth inning between the Miami Marlins and the Atlanta Braves at Marlins Park on August 16, 2020. Photo by Michael Reaves/Getty Images
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It's no secret that the Miami Marlins have had a tumultuous history, with frequent changes in ownership, management, on-field talent, and end-of-season results — all of which has served to destabilize the fanbase.

We all know Miami isn't the greatest baseball town. "Unhappy Marlins Fans" isn't a newsy headline.

What is and continues to be newsworthy is that one of the more controversial figures in the franchise's downfall and horrid reputation with local sports fans — David Samson, former president of the franchise — has managed to spin up a side hustle commenting on the Marlins' mistakes while ignoring the fact that he is to blame for a fair share of fanbase disillusionment (along with his former boss and stepfather, erstwhile Marlins owner Jeffrey Loria).

David Samson opining about Miami Marlins fans failing to fill LoanDepot Park feels a little like Kanye West appearing on a guest panel to workshop ways to fight anti-Semitism.

Yet here he comes again, exhibiting his habitual lack of self-awareness in a recent interview with the media outlet Front Office Sports.

"I think that the demographics of Miami would indicate it's a wealthy city, but it's got one of the lowest incomes of any of the Major League cities," Samson opined in his interview with FOS as to why more Marlins fans don't buy tickets.

"You'd think there is more corporate support, but there isn't. You'd think there are more fans, but the truth is those fans that come out for the WBC (World Baseball Classic) doesn't translate — we tried for over a decade to have it translate, but it didn't."

"It's possible that Miami is simply not a baseball market."
Wow — there is a lot to unpack from just a 28-second clip. 

Pointing out that Miamians aren't as rich as depicted in the movies? Bombshell news: Miami has consistently ranked at the bottom when it comes to U.S. income and poverty levels — and that was before rent prices and, well, almost everything else that has skyrocketed amid recent inflation.

As far as corporate America not being as interested in spending their advertising money on the Marlins as some other teams, both locally and across MLB, it would be logical to assume this is a chicken before the egg situation, or better yet, a scenario that begs the question: if an ad appears on a ballpark, but no one is watching, was there ever an ad to begin with?

Samson also observed that the massive, enthusiastic crowds supporting their home countries during the 2023 World Baseball Classic have yet to translate to Tuesday afternoon tilts against the Pittsburgh Pirates. Don't they love baseball?!

Given Samson's track record, it's hard to take his advice seriously. He (and Loria) played an outsized role in putting the Marlins at the bottom of the steep attendance hill the team is now attempting to climb.

His constant team teardowns and questionable front-office decisions are precisely what disillusioned many Miamians who grew up Marlins fans. His machinations in extracting millions of dollars from the city, then calling Miamians stupid and bragging that he didn't care whether fans came out because the checks already cleared, might explain the empty seats.

Watch him tell Miamians to go fuck themselves and boast about how rich he is!
Under Samson's leadership, the Marlins traded away some of their best players and struggled to field a competitive team. Fans were frustrated by ownership's lack of investment, and attendance at Marlins games consistently ranked among the lowest in the league.

Given this history, it's hard to see how Samson is qualified to offer advice as to how the Marlins can draw more fans.

But hey, that didn't stop the Dan LeBatard-led Meadowlark Media from giving him a microphone and a sweet deal to do just that.

None of this is to say David Samson has the power to fill LoanDepot Park. That task falls to the team's current ownership, which has yet to invest anything close to what the market demands when it comes to competing for an NL East title, much less a championship. (See Padres, San Diego.)

Miamians come out for a winner — or, at the very least, to watch a team with a chance at winning. Expecting fans to come out to the ballpark for 80-plus games to watch a sport currently working to implement ways to be less boring might be realistic in Milwaukee but not in Miami.

Again, this isn't news. It's just... Miami.

As for Samson, rather than bloviate about how horrid Marlins fans are and how Miamians just aren't dedicated to the team, maybe he can ask himself how we got this way.
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