Former Marlins owner says Derek Jeter ‘destroyed the ballpark’

Former Marlins owner says Derek Jeter 'destroyed the ballpark'

Former Miami Marlins owner Jeffrey Loria doesn’t think too highly of the job Derek Jeter did during his time as one of the franchise’s head executives.

Among the things Loria was least impressed with during Jeter’s tenure as Marlins owner was how he changed the look of the team’s home park by removing the stadium’s home-run statue in center field.

“Jeter came in and destroyed the ballpark,” Loria told the Miami Herald’s Barry Jackson. “Destroying public art was a horrible thing to do.”

The sculpture, which sits on an outside plaza attracting little attention, was a $2.5-million piece of art designed by a friend of Loria’s.

Loria also went on to suggest the former New York Yankees shortstop wasn’t prepared to run a baseball team after buying the club with Bruce Sherman in 2017. He cited Jeter’s poor decision-making and inability to handle situations like employee firings as specific examples.

Loria said Jeter instructed team president David Samson to fire “superb” talent evaluators on his first day as owner then relieved Samson of his duties the following day. He also said Jeter dismissed longtime scout Marty Scott in 2017 while he was recovering from colon cancer in the hospital.

“He was a magnificent player, and he should have asked for some advice or not been so hasty,” Loria said. “Playing shortstop doesn’t translate to success in a business environment. You have to learn, you have to ask questions.”

Jeter ended his relationship with the Marlins and sold his ownership shares in 2022.

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