- Last Updated: 5:30 AM, April 2, 2012
- Posted: 1:07 AM, April 2, 2012
MIAMI — This was only an exhibition game, but a Yankees-Marlins matchup would make for a pretty good October showdown, a rematch of the 2003 World Series won by the Marlins in six games.
The season gets underway for the Marlins here Wednesday when they host the Cardinals. The Yankees start two days later. Both teams think they have what it takes to be successful in the postseason and the Marlins have this glittering new ballpark with the retractable roof — with a few kinks to work out.
There were issues with the roof Saturday night when the usual South Florida rains came, and field was soft and dangerous yesterday in the Yankees’ 10-8 win. You don’t want to have that type of infield when you pay $106 million for a shortstop with hamstring issues like Jose Reyes.
“It was tough,’’ Reyes said. “It was soft. It was wet. It was hard to play on. It was a little bit dangerous. I think they forgot to close the roof. We made it through.’’
Nick Swisher, who has had two groin injuries this spring, said, “That infield was like running in sand.’’
Overall, the ballpark is spectacular and has that South Beach splash, including a lime green outfield wall. There is a funky jumping Marlin-themed sculpture in center — think of it as their version of the home run apple — that will be turned on for the opener. Aquariums are in the low wall behind home plate. Yesterday, the roof was closed.
“Guys should be thanking God for playing in this organization right now,’’ Marlins manager Ozzie Guillen said. “Winning is everything. The Marlins won two championships in the old ballpark, hopefully we can bring the championship to the new ballpark.’’
The Marlins are going for it again. The Yankees are always going for it.
Opening Day pitcher CC Sabathia is convinced the Yankees have the pitching to make it back to the World Series for the first time since 2009, the year the Yankees opened the new Yankee Stadium.
“I’m excited for us,’’ Sabathia said. “If we stay healthy and pitch the way we’re supposed to, we’re going to be right back in the position where we want to be. We have a great clubhouse; we’ve got great chemistry on this team. Hopefully we can put it all together and make a good run.’’
Marlins owner Jeffrey Loria likes to collect works of art, like Reyes.
“We finally have a home,’’ Loria said. “The architecture is exquisite, beautiful, colorful, innovative, dazzling, whatever you want to say. It’s a building with a contemporary feeling, looking forward, not backwards, and all the elements that you need.’’
David Samson, president of the Marlins, said what he likes best about the new ballpark is something that anyone who has visited Miami can relate to: “My favorite thing is the air conditioning,’’ he said.
The Marlins will never have a rain delay at home again, as long as they get the roof closed, and that can help make them a better team by keeping pitchers on schedule and allowing position players to get more work done prior to games.
Said one MLB executive, “This is going to be a destination place for players. There are so many players who live in Florida who would love to play near home.’’
Native son Alex Rodriguez said how proud he was of Miami to have such a beautiful baseball home. He enjoyed the day, watching his two daughters playing in the dugout during batting practice.
“You need a venue like this to compete,’’ Rodriguez said. “It parallels the Miami Heat. Miami is a place that if you win, the fans will definitely come out. They enjoy their stars. They enjoy winners.’’
We’ll see who the real winners are come this October.Follow @NYPostsports