Last year, during one of those key stretch games against the Phillies at Pro Player Stadium, the Marlins' Miguel Cabrera's face popped up on the scoreboard as he came up to bat. An 8-year-old boy sitting in the stands looked up in sheer wonder. "Look at that! He's just a little kid! He's only 12!" The amazed boy wasn't that far off. Cabrera is 20, but with that baby face, we wonder if he's ever had to shave. But don't let youth fool you -- Cabrera is way beyond his years on the diamond. He can play any nonbattery position, hits with equal parts grace and power (12 HRs and 62 RBI in little more than half a season last year), and batted clean-up in the World Series. In fact, he had one of the greatest at-bats in recent playoffs history when he smacked a ball over the rightfield wall right after aging superstar Roger Clemens, who was supposed to be playing his final game, knocked him down with an inside heater. Expect great things from the Venezuelan Virtuoso this year -- we're venturing 35 HRs and 120 RBI, which wouldn't be too bad for a little kid.

Best Reason to Avoid the Marlins Clubhouse

Josh Beckett

After pitching a gem at the age of 23 to win the World Series in Yankee Stadium, all Marlins' ace Josh Beckett seemed to talk about was his plan to kill deer the next day. He rarely smiled, his answers were gruff, and his demeanor said, "This is no big deal for a stud like me." And all we could think was, "What a spoiled little punk." Maybe being a royal jackass is what he needs to make him great on the mound, but when he reaches the peak of the magical mountain of all of sport, could he at least show a touch of grace or gratitude? Nu-uh. And he's even more unbearable this year, as a March 21 interview session after a spring training game in Fort Myers showed. A reporter asked him about Fox Sports Network babe Leeann Tweeden, his new girlfriend. "Do I have to listen to the same fucking questions again?" he said to the reporter, a friend of ours. Then Beckett said, "I have a big dick." The jerk from Texas looked over at veteran outfielder Gerald Williams. "It's even bigger than Gerald Williams' dick." Now, this might have been crudely amusing if someone else had said it, but coming from Beckett, it was just crude. Memo to Josh: We don't care if you're packing a Louisville Slugger under your cup -- you still gotta grow some class. Ask Garry Maddox or Alex Rodriguez about it. They might be able to show you how.
Before you browse the scuffed-up power tools and stereos inside the store, take note of the running Dolphins commentary on the front windows and doors. Stenciled in block letters on a sun-faded Dolphins helmet poster from 2000: "SUUUCKS!" Stenciled on a poster of the Dolphins 2002 schedule: "SUU-U-CKS." Stenciled diagonally across a lifesized Ricky Williams poster from 2003: "SUU-U-CKS!!" The penetrating critique of the team's prowess may seem voluminous -- overwhelming, even -- but the plain, hand-lettered sign beside the door offers a penetrating summary: "Last year and then this year as the same they SUUUCKS."

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