Series Preview: Miami Marlins

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Michael Conforto comes into this series hitting .308/.438/.462.

With the Mets struggling for offense and dropping 2 of 3 to the Phillies, the Miami Marlins come to town.

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2015 fanfare: John Franco, Rusty Staub, and Edgardo Alfonso raised the National League pennant flag as the Mets opened Citi Field in 2016. The team also received their National League Champion rings, complete with 42 sapphires.

deGrom skipped: The Mets are taking extra precautions to make sure Jacob deGrom’s tight lat gets back to full strength. Terry Collins has stated that they’re encouraged by his progress, but they will err on the side of caution by skipping his scheduled Wednesday start.

Offensive brown out: Curtis Granderson, Travis D’Arnaud, Yoenis Cespedes, and David Wright are all under the Mendoza line so far this year. Here’s hoping Cespedes’ two run shot springboards him and his fellow slumpers.

Know Your Foe

Joining us for this edition is Dave, from the excellent, oft updated Florida Beer Blog.

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Miami has quite the reputation as an emerging hotbed of quality brewing. Which Miami brewery are you most excited about right now?

There’s so much going on right now, to be honest. There are a few up-and-comers, like Tank and Lincoln’s Beard that are opening. I’m waiting for Descarga to get a facility, and I always get quality brews from the Wynwood triumvirate (Wynwood, Concrete Beach, & J. Wakefield).

Your reviewing, both of individual beers and visits to breweries, is remarkably prolific. How do you find the time to make so many stops across the largest state on the East Coast? Any unique experiences among your travels that stand out?

To be honest, it’s mostly bottles and cans that I get sent to me. It’s incredibly difficult to travel around the state, but I manage to get my hands on some beers. Plus, a lot of breweries a good distance away from me (3 Daughters, Darwin, Tomoka, Barley Mow, etc.) are starting to distribute in my area.

Unique experiences, I have to immediately mention my visit to Point Ybel Brewing, by Sanibel Island. My wife and I were the first ones there that day, and when you walk in you’ve got the tap room, then the back has the brew system. Both are separated by a wall and a large picture window. I immediately thought it was an aquarium, because I saw two huge fish floating in it.

The door opened, and out floated two remote controlled helium shark balloons. They buzzed around the tap room for a bit, then went back into the brewery. We came to find out that they had purchased the balloons for a promo they were going to film for a Sharknado watch party.

I still want those balloons.

Last year, you mentioned that you were hosting tastings at Miami Brewing Co. Beer Garden within BB&T Center for Florida Panthers games (which is awesome!). How did this come about? Think you can get any Panthers players in on a tasting before a game?

I have a fairly good relationship with many breweries from around the state, and Miami Brewing Co. reached out to me to ask if I would be amenable to doing this for them. It was fun, definitely. This season, Miami Brewing Co. is gone from the Panthers, replaced by Coors Light.

I would love to do a tasting with a few players, though.

Bummer. Macrobrew strikes again. You have all afternoon in Miami ahead of a 7:05 Marlins first pitch. What’s your pre-game plan of attack?

24th St. in Wynwood. Start over by I-95, and you have Wynwood Brewing. Up one block, and you’re at Concrete Beach. Up one more, and you’re at J. Wakefield. And up one from that and you’ve got a lot of tap rooms like Bxldr. Plenty of places for good beers.

Hope springs eternal with the beginning of a new MLB season. With full seasons from young superstars like Giancarlo Stanton, Jose Fernandez, and Dee Gordon, do you think a surprise run towards the playoffs is in the cards for the Marlins?

We’ll see. I know a lot of people in my office are excited to see them now being coached by Don Mattingly, but I can’t be instantly excited until I see how they’re doing. The Marlins have been a bit of a South Florida joke as of late. Fingers crossed, though.

Thanks again to Dave for giving us some insight!

Standings & Probables

Nationals 3-1 .750
Mets 2-3 .400
Phillies 2-4 .333
Marlins 1-3 .250
Braves 0-5 .000

Monday, April 11 Steven Matz (0-0 0.00 ERA) vs. Jarred Cosart (0-0 0.00 ERA)

Tuesday, April 12 Noah Syndergaard (1-0 0.00 ERA) vs. Wei-Yin Chen (0-0 9.00 ERA)

Wednesday, April 10 Logan Verrett (0-0 9.00 ERA) vs. Jose Fernandez (0-1 7.94 ERA)

Beer From the Bad Guys

Florida Beer Company Sweet Stout

This pitch black beer is brewed in Cape Canaveral, Florida and is perfect for a rainy day in New York, where the weather hasn’t completely warmed up just yet.  Not as heavy as your typical “winter warmer”, this brew finishes smooth and light, but delivers on the traditional flavors you hope for out of a stout.

The chocolate used in this beer is very present at the nose, and is complimented by undertones of licorice and coffee. The taste is reminiscent of mochaccino – chocolate (milk?) and coffee. The palate is surprisingly bright and smooth and the crispness of the beer helps lift the creamy finish off the palate – making it incredibly drinkable.

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See: 60

Smell: 65

Taste: 55

Feel: 70

Overall: 60-65

Sweet Stout is a great alternative to heavier brews within the same category, and is a great choice for game conditions like the Mets and Marlins might face over the next two days (weather permitting). The beer is sweet and full bodied, but is light enough that you can a have a few over the course of a ball game. After losing two straight to the Phillies at home, you might end up needing more than one if the Mets don’t get hot against the Marlins. LGM!

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