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Saturday, February 24, 2018

Marlins fired scout while he was in hospital recovering from cancer surgery

The Miami Marlins have essentially been cleaning house since Derek Jeter took over as the team’s CEO, and apparently even employees who are recovering in the hospital should not take their job with the organization for granted.

Marty Scott, a former Marlins vice president who had been working as a scout in recent years, told Jeff Passan of Yahoo Sports that he was informed he no longer had a job with the Marlins last month while he was in a hospital after undergoing colon cancer surgery. On Oct. 16, Scott received a call from Marlins pro scouting director Jim Cuthbert.

“My heart sank a little bit,” Scott recalled. “At the same time, I thought, ‘They’re not going to do this while I’m in the hospital. … I didn’t want to get upset, get my blood pressure up. I was lying in a hospital bed and couldn’t move.”

Scott said he was hoping to speak with Jeter or someone from upper management about the decision. While he noted that Cuthbert was apologetic, he said his request was never fulfilled.

“Derek Jeter doesn’t owe me anything,” Scott said. “Probably in their hearts they did what they thought was right. I know based on certain aspects of the game, I probably was making too much money. But we all love the game. We’re all in it together. I just think 40 years was worth more than a spank on the butt and see you later.

“I’m very hurt. Forty years in baseball, I let a lot of people go. I never, ever fired somebody 10 days, 15 days before their contract was up. If I knew I was going to fire somebody, I did it at the beginning of September.”

Scott, 64, found out he had a cancerous tumor on his colon in August when he was undergoing tests for a kidney transplant he needs. He was discharged from the hospital a day after the Marlins let him go, but he returned to a different hospital two days later when he developed a urinary tract infection. Doctors started him on dialysis and daily three-hour therapy sessions, and Scott says his Marlins-issued cell phone was shut off during that time. That led to complications with his health insurance situation, but he was able to get everything sorted out and is scheduled for a kidney transplant in January.

“The ironic thing about all this is in their playing days, my two favorite athletes over the past 20 years were Brett Favre and Derek Jeter,” Scott said. “Because they played their respective games the way they need to be played. They respected the game. They weren’t hot dogs. They hustled. That’s why they were my favorite players. But Derek’s in a new game now, one of management and ownership, and certain things about this side of the game he needs to learn.”

Jeter has received a lot of bad press since he bought the Marlins, and Scott’s story certainly won’t help things. While there’s a difference between firing an employee and not renewing a contract, it seems like there were much better ways the Marlins could have handled the scout’s dismissal.

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