Mixed reactions from fans on Marlins opener
Apr 06, 2012 (The Miami Herald - McClatchy-Tribune Information Services via COMTEX) --
Criticism about Marlins Park was not immediately apparent during the opening game on Wednesday.
Fans were giddy with excitement as the 8,300-ton retractable steel roof slowly slid open to reveal the bright blue sky and full moon above. The evening was rife with surprises, including a tearful teleconference with a soldier in Iraq, and an appearance by the disabled Muhammad Ali, who struggled to grip a baseball due to advanced Parkinson's.
But as the celebrations at the ballpark subsided Thursday, chatter about the historic opening night filled South Florida homes, offices and social media platforms:
"I have repeatedly heard people say that Marlins Park was the worst thing that can happen to Miami. As far as I'm concerned, I love that stadium," Aurelien Matthews, 21, said on Facebook.
Despite the fireworks, jets, and fancy drinks, the Marlins failed to make a hit until the final stretch of the game.
Larissa Porta, who was also at the game was pleased by the stadium, but disappointed by the team's performance. She blamed the theatrics: "The walking of the players by the showgirls... was too much to play with the psyche of the players prior to an important game. Guys are not into that kind of exposure and it takes them off-rhythm ... maybe that's why they didn't bat!"
She also thought Ali was a bad choice for the opening night: "Not really sure that Muhammad Ali was the best choice to pick for the delivery of the ball as his health has deteriorated him significantly," Porta said in response to a query, adding that maybe Dan Marino or Don Shula would have worked better.
Most fans were so pleased by the beauty of the stadium that they didn't mention the bad players, "The best baseball stadium I've ever been to," said Willis Brown on Facebook. "It's like you're outside and inside all at the same time."
Still, many were there to see their favorite players win. "Call me old-fashioned, but keep it simple and make it about the game, not the frills," said Anamary Batista-Shannon on Facebook. "Put the money into the talent and leave South Beach where it is."
This report was supplemented with information from the Public Insight
Network, an online community of people who have agreed to share their
insights. To join, visit miamiherald.com/insight.
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