MIAMI (AP) — Miami Marlins president of baseball operations Larry Beinfest was fired Friday owner Jeffrey Loria after 12 years with the franchise.
The move came as the Marlins neared the end of their third consecutive last-place season in the NL East.
Loria also fired Jim Fleming, who had been Beinfest's special assistant. The owner said he would soon make further announcements about a new structure in baseball operations.
The moves came even though Beinfest and Fleming are under contract through 2015.
Beinfest also worked under Loria in 2001 with the Montreal Expos. When Loria bought the Marlins before the 2002 season, he brought Beinfest along.
"Larry has worked with me for 13 years, making huge contributions to our efforts and serving as a partner to me in the process," Loria said in a statement announcing the firing. "I wish him nothing but the best and know he will make a great addition wherever he lands."
Beinfest was general manager of the Marlins in 2003 when they made an improbable run to the World Series title. There has been no return to the playoffs since, with Loria's tight payrolls making it difficult for the franchise to be competitive.
The Marlins moved into a new ballpark last year, but their fortunes on the field have only declined. Beinfest sent a text message to media outlets as the Marlins began batting practice before the start of a game against Detroit with a record of 59-100, worst in the NL.
"I was just fired by Jeffrey Loria," Beinfest wrote. "I want to thank the Marlins for the opportunity. I look back positively at tackling numerous challenges, opening a new ballpark and enjoying a World Series championship. I worked with some tremendous players and staff in Miami and appreciate their friendship and professional respect.
"I look forward to continuing my 24-year MLB career in the near future."
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