Florida Marlins - Major League Baseball
The Florida Marlins are one of the younger franchises in Major League Baseball, having come into the league in the expansion of 1993 along with the Colorado Rockies. In many ways, that 1993 expansion is very significant to the idea of sports as a whole because it really shows just how divergent teams can be depending on circumstances wholly unrelated to the time in which they came into the leagues. The Florida Marlins have enjoyed a lot of success since their entrance into Major League Baseball, while the Colorado Rockies have floundered. The Marlins dress in white with black pinstripes when they are playing at home and in grey solid colors with green lettering when playing on the road. They have an alternate 3rd jersey with a pinstripe white bottom and a black top with white-green lettering.
Despite having some success in the early part of the decade, the Florida Marlins have been downsizing a lot of their staff and in the 2006 season they went 78-84; well out of playoff contention. However, that was a decent record considering their low payroll status and indeed at the start of the 2007 season, they had the lowest payroll in Major League Baseball. Due to their low payroll, it was not expected that they would do anything particularly great this year and true to expectations, the Florida Marlins are more then ten games out of the division lead and since they also have seven teams in front of them for the wildcard spot, for all intents and purposes they are out of the playoff race.
The team history of the Florida Marlins is one that is not particularly long, but at the same time one that has been filled with success that a number of older teams could only dream of. As previously mentioned, the Marlins have been around since 1993 and through that whole period have been a part of the National League East Division. They have retired the number 5 for Carl Barger and of course are participants in the universal retiring of Jackie Robinson's number 42.
The Marlins have two wild card berths in 1997 and 2003 and in fact have only ever made the playoffs twice since their inception. However, in form that is truly unique in Major League Baseball, the Marlins have been able to convert both playoff appearances into NL Pennants and eventually World Series Titles. They have the highest percentage of World Series wins to playoff berths in all of Major League Baseball and indeed have another commendable distinction of having won both their World Series Titles from converted wild card berths.
The thing that makes their success so great to the fans in Florida is that both World Series titles were totally unexpected. In other words, the Marlins making the playoffs was a big enough event to thoroughly energize the fans that they had and when they were able to then go ahead and convert each playoff appearance into a World Series title, the success then meant all the more.