Marlins Clinch 1st Playoff Berth Since 2003 with Win vs. Yankees

Scott Polacek@@ScottPolacekFeatured ColumnistSeptember 26, 2020

Miami Marlins celebrate after the team's baseball game against the Washington Nationals,Sunday, Sept. 20, 2020, in Miami. The Marlins won 2-1. (AP Photo/Gaston De Cardenas)
Gaston De Cardenas/Associated Press

If history holds, the Miami Marlins are going to win the World Series this year.

After all, the Marlins have won the World Series every time they have made the playoffs in franchise history. While they have made the playoffs just twice in their 28 years (1997 and 2003), they will have an opportunity to add a third championship to the trophy case in 2020.

That is because Miami clinched its spot in the postseason with a 4-3 extra-innings win over the New York Yankees on Friday coupled with a Philadelphia Phillies loss.

The Marlins fell short of the Atlanta Braves in the National League East race, but they are one of the most pleasant surprises in all of Major League Baseball this season. There were not many expectations heading into the campaign considering they were 57-105 last year, and things didn't get much easier when eight games were postponed in the opening two weeks because of a COVID-19 outbreak within the team.

Manager Don Mattingly said, "This is an easy club to be proud of."

There are a number of talented players in the lineup who have helped propel Miami to success, including Miguel Rojas, Brian Anderson, Jon Berti, Jesus Aguilar, Corey Dickerson and Garrett Cooper, among others.

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Miami also added a veteran leader in Starling Marte via trade in August, signaling it was making a push toward the playoffs when it acquired him from the Arizona Diamondbacks.

Marte has been excellent this season and entered Friday's action slashing .287/.342/.781 with six home runs, 27 RBI and 10 stolen bases all while anchoring the outfield defense in center field. He brings playoff experience to the middle of the team's order and is someone who will likely be asked to deliver in key moments against the National League's best teams in the playoffs.

There will also be plenty of pressure on the shoulders of the starting pitching trio of Pablo Lopez, Sixto Sanchez and Sandy Alcantara, although all three have thrived at times this season.

Miami has already surpassed all expectations just making the playoffs, but it has the pieces in place to potentially make a run just like it did the other two times it qualified for the postseason.