Chip Bowers is out as the Miami Marlins’ president of business operations after 14 months, MLB and team sources confirmed, continuing a period of turmoil for the rebuilding organisation.
Bowers arrived early last year to the Marlins from the Golden State Warriors, where he had a decorated tenure as chief marketing officer for the club and was part of two NBA Finals-winning teams. But sources said Bowers did not meet ownership expectations, leading to the abrupt departure.
The decision, team sources said, is not tied specifically to the Marlins’ Major League Baseball-low attendance that stands at just 9,651 per game through 18 home dates, a number trailing last year’s average that also ranked worst in the league.
The Marlins, under new owner Bruce Sherman and chief executive Derek Jeter, have also attempted a series of other off-field moves, including a new logo and uniform set, revamped food offerings and marketing efforts, Marlins Park improvements, and the creation of new social and standing-room areas in the ballpark, many of which were said to be in development prior to Bowers’ arrival.
But on top of the low attendance, the Marlins entered play Thursday night with a league-worst 9-21 record and have yet to show tangible improvements in a variety of on- and off-field measures.
Following Bowers’ departure, Adam Jones was promoted from vice president of strategy and development to a new role as Marlins chief revenue officer. Caroline O’Connor, previously the club’s senior vice-president and chief of staff, is now chief operating officer. Both Jones and O’Connor are close advisers to Jeter.
Jones has been the point man in the Marlins’ efforts to secure a new, more lucrative local TV contract to succeed the current one with Fox Sports Florida expiring after the 2020 season. Vice president of corporate partnerships David Oxfeld, meanwhile, has a lead role in pursuing a corporate naming rights deal for Marlins Park.
Jeter is expected to address Bowers’ departure prior to Friday’s home game against Atlanta.