thu 8/11 The Marlins are having something of a schizophrenic season. They start out in first place, then drop to last; now they're in second; then they're in fourth. On any given day, another player is injured (latest casualty: catcher Paul Lo Duca, pictured). This is the time, people, when we separate the true believers from the fair-weather fans, when you either point out that Mike Lowell's hitting has sucked or you celebrate his fielding percentage of .979 and his shot at winning a Golden Glove. So what are you going to do? Grumble about how the team has disappointed you? Or buck up, whip open your closet doors, and pull out everything teal?
Every fan inside Dolphins Stadium (2269 NW 199th St., Miami) will boost the Fish morale. Every shout of "Come on, Marlins, you can do it -- put a little power to it" helps. Every beer you drink, you're taking one for the team.
thu 8/11 Why should you see the Dolphins practice at training camp? Two words: Jason Taylor. Or: Ricky Williams. Or: It's free. In a beautifully democratic move, the team allows in the first 2,000 fans who arrive at its training facility (7500 SW 30th St., Davie). This week's practices are from 3 to 5 p.m. Thursday, 9:30 to 11 a.m. Friday, 3 to 5 p.m. Monday, 9:30 to 11:30 a.m. and 7:30 to 9:30 p.m. Tuesday, and 3 to 5 p.m. Wednesday. Coach Nick Saban said recently that he saw in his players "a little bit more life in what we were doing, a little bit more spirit, and a little better gleam in the eyes." So hopefully the team is on its way to a better season than last year's miserable one (4-12). Visit miamidolphins.com. -- Deirdra Funcheon