Just when you think the Miami Marlins couldn’t draw more scorn from their fanbase…surprise! On Monday night, the Marlins opted not to bring back Fox Sports Florida color commentator Tommy Hutton, who had been with the team for 19 years. In case you’re curious, the Marlins franchise is only 23 years old, meaning Hutton had been there since nearly the beginning.

Barry Jackson of the Miami Herald, who is well-tuned in to the Miami media beat, quoted Hutton in saying that his departure did not have anything to do with money (which is somewhat shocking, considering this is the Marlins we’re talking about here).

“All I got was we’ve made a decision to go in another direction,” he said. “They insisted it wasn’t about budget. I was surprised and shocked the way it was handled given the fact it was two months into the offseason and a couple days before Thanksgiving.”

What did the team and network have to say? Well…I’m sure you can guess.

PJ Loyello, the team’s senior vice president/communications and broadcasting, said only: “It was a mutual decision between Fox and the ball club and we decided to go in a different direction.”

Fox wouldn’t comment beyond this statement: “This was a joint decision with the Marlins to move forward with a new color analyst beginning next season. We thank Tommy for his calls and contributions over the years at FOX Sports Florida.”

Man, I love it when a team and RSN dump a popular commentator and not expect anyone to notice or care. That always ends well.

Hutton said he isn’t going to retire despite being 69 years old.

“I am thankful to have worked 51 years in this game,” Hutton said. “I am thankful to have spent the last 19 doing Marlins baseball.

“I am in no way thinking about retiring. I still love the game, still have passion, still have energy.”

Members of the local Miami media are stunned.

This Vine with a Hutton quote sums this up pretty well.

While I’m just spitballing here, I would assume that the Marlins made the decision to move on from Hutton because of his critical he could be at times. His commentary style was entertaining, though often times blunt and a bit too honest for a Marlins organization that despises any sort of negative publicity, which it receives on a daily basis for one reason or another.

I’m sure Hutton will be replaced in the booth alongside play-by-play commentator Rich Waltz (who isn’t going anywhere, via Jackson and other reports) with a former Marlins player that Jeffrey Loria hasn’t managed to drive away yet. Hey, what’s Jeff Conine up to?

[Miami Herald]

About Joe Lucia

I hate your favorite team. I also sort of hate most of my favorite teams.