At this moment inside the Marlins offices, there are two groups of people. There are those who think team owner Jeffrey Loria is doing an increasingly shabby job of running the franchise right down to Tuesday's firing of manager Ozzie Guillen.
And there is Jeffrey Loria.
Over the past few decades, the Dolphins have had three owners, the Marlins have had three owners, the Panthers have had three groups of owners and the Heat have had two groups of owners.
None of them was questioned more inside their own franchise than Loria is right now by underlings, privately, in sotto voce. It's an epidemic. And it speaks of a dysfunctional franchise in the manner the sports media tried so loudly to portray (and missed the truth) with the Dolphins last winter.
This isn't just about Loria firing Guillen. But it is symbolized by Loria moving heaven, earth, some players and $10 million a year ago to hire Guillen from the Chicago White Sox. And now firing him.
Is there a plan here? Any consistency of thinking? Anything to warrant confidence for Marlins fans?
Loria deserves credit for building a beautiful, publicly-funded ballpark. But what that's meant since the season ended is he has the public funds to pay Guillen $7.5 million not to manage and traded reliever Heath Bell $8 million not to pitch for the Marlins.
Guillen managed eight years in Chicago. He worked for Loria's Marlins before that. He was a known commodity, especially his mouth, which caused an uproar last spring when he said in a Time magazine interview, "I love Fidel Castro."
If Loria wanted to fire Guillen for that quote and the way it simmered in South Florida, he should have done so at the time. That would have been an owner standing for something, protecting his investment and understanding his new stadium's Little Havana home.
But if Loria wanted to fire someone for this ugly season, if his finger was twitching so badly he needed to find some righteous blame, there were more far relevant targets than Guillen.
President of Baseball Operations Larry Beinfest, for one example. He assembled this leaky lineup (at least the parts Loria didn't blindside him with). He picked these players (at least the ones Loria didn't pick himself).
Beinfest has a decade of drafts without much to show for them and a year of bad decisions in his first off-season with big money (again, the ones Loria didn't make himself).
How would a trade of struggling Logan Morrison for pitcher local, left-handed pitcher Gio Gonzalez (21-8, 2.89 ERA) look now? Oakland wanted to do that last winter. Washington made the kind of move that shows why it made the playoffs.
How would Cuban defector Yoenis Cespedes look in the Marlins outfield? The Marlins didn't think he could play well enough. He hit .292 with 23 home runs and 82 RBI for Oakland.
So there are a lot of baseball decisions behind handled. You can't pin all this on Beinfest. Not with Loria prowling the room. Loria signed Heath Bell to a three-year, $27 million contract without even telling his baseball people until it was completed (Beinfest wanted a lesser, two-year deal).
Loria also signed catcher John Buck for a three-year, $18 million deal. Again, Beinfest wanted him for fewer years and far less money. But everyone knows Rule No. 1 inside the Marlins: The owner gets what the owner wants.
That's not unusual in sports. You see a lot of owners running their team like they're the smartest person in any room they enter. It's their money, their team and their right to do it however they want.
You just don't see those owners getting the kind of wins, respect or community acclaim they always think they deserve.
Sometimes it takes a while to figure out how to be a good owner. But it's been a decade for Loria with the Marlins now and years before that with the Expos.
When Gonzalez, the least controversial of men, pointed out Loria likes to blame managers recently, Loria lashed back by calling Gonzalez a, "colossal failure," with the Marlins.
Gonzalez managed the last two winning seasons Loria had. He managed Atlanta to the playoffs this year while the Marlins sunk to last in the same division. Who's a colossal failure now?
Loria will look for a new manager now. But it'd be best for him to look at himself for a bit. He's a smart man. A driven man. He's also the biggest problem right now in a franchise full of them.