Manfred defends Jeter, Marlins ownership group

Dec 20, 2017 - 9:38 PM Major League Baseball commissioner Rob Manfred defended the new Miami Marlins ownership group, in particular Derek Jeter, during an interview on ESPN radio Wednesday.

Manfred went on the Dan Le Batard show, which is based in Miami, and fielded questions about the Marlins trading away All-Stars Giancarlo Stanton, Marcell Ozuna and Dee Gordon, and the general direction of the team under Jeter's ownership group.

"This is really simple," Manfred told ESPN Radio. "We approved a very well-funded group that made numerous presentations to us about their commitment to provide winning baseball in South Florida over the long haul. That's generally what we look for in the approval process.

"We don't get into, are you going to trade 'Player X' or 'Player Y' at a particular point in time, nor do we ask them to make a commitment to people before they even got in and made an evaluation of their talent level, their ability to win with the people that they have. That's just not how the ownership process works."

The Marlins have a history of building up the team only to slash the payroll and rebuild, and Jeter's group is well on its way to employing the same strategy. The future Hall of Fame shortstop had a meeting with angry season ticket holders on Tuesday and defended his direction for the team, pointing to payroll relief and flexibility for the future.

"I said this before," Manfred said. "This group deserves a fair opportunity to demonstrate that they have a long-term commitment to winning."

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