Mike Stanton walks through the Marlins’ clubhouse looking like something the ancient Greeks might have imagined in marble. He is 6-5, shoulders broad, biceps bulging, the black bat in his right hand appearing as light as a chopstick.
He is a baseball prodigy, nothing less, on this his first Opening Day as a major-leaguer. All of those tape-measure home runs he hit in the secrecy of the minors formed the outline of near-Ruthian legend. An almost mythic aura both precedes and follows him, the promise of prolific power.
Something will be crushed here.
It will be the baseballs he sends flying prodigiously over outfield walls.
Or will it be Stanton himself, under the weight of expectations?