Marlins outfielder/tweeter Logan Morrison was demoted to AAA New Orleans on Saturday night. It was a weird demotion, because Morrison ranks second in OPS on the team (ahead of first baseman Gaby Sanchez, and any outfielders who might replace him) and because the Marlins are 56-64, burnt toast.
But we will propose an alternative theory: Wes Helms did him in. Let us explain.
Wes Helms has played for the Marlins each of the last four seasons. We have no idea why. Over that time, he has hit .236/.301/.337 in 923 plate appearances. (For some reference, those are Brad Ausmus numbers from a righty pinch-hitter. Carlos Zambrano has hit .278/.290/.464 in the same time span. He might be available.) Now, you ought to gasp at those numbers. Especially since no real outlier drags them down. (His OPS+es: 69, 79, 72, 42. The last one's from 2011, his shortest season.) He did all that while playing corner infield positions and pinch-hitting, and while making twice the major league minimum.
The Marlins had every reason to cut bait on Helms as early as 2008, for crissakes, but they held on to him and lavished praise and dollars upon his subpar name. In 2010, Florida extended his contract midseason. He was hitting .225 with four homers.
Either he had incriminating photos of Marlins brass—although we'd wonder what could embarrass them further—or he was a rabble-rouser hired by Florida to cause and fix problems. (More on this later.)
But the Marlins finally gave up on pretending that Helms was a major-league player, and they released him on Saturday night when they demoted Morrison. But the timing of that decision may indicate what we suspected, that Wes Helms is a secret devil double agent mole inside the players' union and the locker room, creating dissension whenever Jeffrey Loria pushes a button.
Take the strange circumstances of LoMoGate, from a Palm Beach Post blog post:
After offering advice to Logan Morrison, Wes Helms gets released by Florida Marlins
Logan Morrison plans to consult the players' union to see if he has any grounds for a grievance against the Marlins for optioning him late Saturday to Class AAA New Orleans.
Helms' departure comes after he advised Morrison not to attend a team-related function before Saturday's game.
Morrison had already attended an autograph signing earlier Saturday, an event that lasted longer than planned. When he arrived at Sun Life Stadium, he found out the team was expected to attend a meet-and-greet with season ticket holders.
That's when Morrison balked, still angry at the way the Florida Marlins Community Foundation handled a planned charity bowling tournament that was canceled because of a lack of interest.
He consulted with Helms, the team's union rep, who advised him he didn't have to attend the meet-and-greet. Helms did attend that event.
Wes Helms is the Marlins' union rep. Wes Helms told Logan Morrison to blow off the meet-and-greet. Morrison got canned for it (even if the team won't publicly say so), and looks like an asshole to the invited season-ticket holders, who are probably the only living Marlins fans anyway. And where can Morrison turn to address his grievance, to accuse the team of unfairly demoting him? The players' union, where his liaison is one Wes Helms.
So why might the Marlins release Helms? Cover-up, you see. Wes Helms works under the cloak of darkness. Wes Helms got paid his kill fee. But he'll be back. Don't say we didn't tell you so if you see hotshot call-up Hes Welms playing third base for Florida, handlebar mustache and all, in September.