The last month of the season has come and gone. How did the Marlins do in the month of September? Welcome to this season’s final edition of The Good, The Bad, and The Unbelievable Marlins Month Recap. There is so much to cover this month that we are going to skip the quick recap and jump right into it. So here we go…
Attendance for games was down as much as 39 percent in late June, but the average tally in Marlins Park was stronger than at Sun Life Stadium.
Marlins pitcher Henderson Alvarez ran off the mound, mistakenly thinking he had won after no-hitting Detroit over nine innings at Marlins Park on Sunday afternoon. Meanwhile, his teammates wondered how long Alvarez would be allowed to pitch if they couldn’t break the 0-0 tie.
If Palm Beach Gardens can build a facility grand enough to fit both the Houston Astros and the Toronto Blue Jays, spring training in South Florida will go on like it always has. If not, well, it probably won’t be big headlines that trigger trouble around here in the years to come, but scary little bits of fine print written into Roger Dean Stadium’s lease agreements with the Marlins and St. Louis Cardinals.
Marlins pitcher Henderson Alvarez was named the National League Player of the Week on Monday, a day after the right-hander tossed an unusual no-hitter in the regular-season finale against the Tigers. Making his second start of the week, Alvarez held Detroit hitless for nine innings at Marlins Park on Sunday afternoon, issuing one walk and hitting one batter while striking out four in only 99 pitches. The game remained in a scoreless tie until the bottom of the ninth, when Giancarlo Stanton scored on a wild pitch to give Alvarez only the sixth walk-off no-hitter in Major League history, according to the Elias Sports Bureau. It was the fifth such no-no achieved by a single pitcher and first since the Tigers' Virgil Trucks in 1952
Mike Redmond, three years removed from being a longtime backup catcher, was brought in to manage and help mold a squad that was high on raw talent, but low on big league experience. With change comes uncertainty. Redmond was well aware of that early on in Spring Training. But once the season got underway, he was clearly blindsided by the sheer volume of players who were sidelined in the first month due to injuries. A team short on depth found itself with 10 players serving 11 disabled-list stints in the first month alone.
Marlins outfielder Jake Marisnick underwent a scope on his left knee on Monday to repair a torn meniscus that had been hindering him for several weeks. The procedure included cleaning out some loose bodies in the knee, and Marisnick will need four-to-six weeks of recovery before he begins his rehabilitation. "It went smoothly, and it should be healed up in no time," Marisnick said. "It had been bothering me for a while. Now that I got it taken care of, it's nice to know I'll be healthy."
On Sunday, the Marlins radio and television broadcasters didn't mask what they were watching. They took a direct approach. They let the viewers and listeners know immediately something special was going on during the season finale. Alvarez's no-hitter was ultimately secured in the bottom of the ninth when Giancarlo Stanton raced home on a wild pitch to give the Marlins a 1-0 win over the Tigers, and Alvarez an unconventional no-hitter. The Fox Sports Florida team of Rich Waltz and Tommy Hutton made it known Alvarez was seeking his place in the record books.
A few follow-up tidbits from Henderson Alvarez's season-capping no-hitter against the Detroit Tigers Sunday. ** Alvarez’s no-hitter, which garnered National League Player of the Week honors, was the 282nd in baseball history and 40th of 239 in the modern era (since 1900) to end in a 1-0 victory. ** It was the first to end in walk-off fashion since Francisco Cordova and Ricardo Rincon’s 10-inning, combined no-hitter for the Pirates against the Astros on July 12, 1997. Cordova tossed nine no-hit innings and Rincon added the 10th before Mark Smith ended it with a pinch-hit, three-run homer.
In 1995, three years before the expansion Tampa Bay Rays took the field, the organization hired Dan Jennings to be its scouting director. One of his assistants back then was Michael Hill, who as Jennings recalled was not assigned a cubicle or an office. As Jennings recalled, Hill’s work space "was a closet that had boxes in it. We had no forms in scouting. We had no scouting manual. We had zilch…He and I started at zero." Their accommodations have improved.
Relievers Ryan Webb and A.J. Ramos reached milestones of sorts. With his 1 2/3-inning outing Friday, Webb became the seventh reliever in Marlins history to top the 80-inning mark in a season. At 80 1/3 innings (66 appearances), Webb became the first Marlin since Kevin Gregg in 2007 to reach that plateau exclusively as a reliever. Vladimir Nunez set the club mark in 2002 at 97 2/3 innings over 77 relief appearances. Saturday, A.J. Ramos pitched the 1 1/3-inning he needed to reach 80 and become the eighth member of that club, which also includes Braden Looper. Three times (1999, 2002-'03), Looper pitched between 80 2/3 and 86 innings out of the bullpen for the Marlins.
The plan to relocate the spring training homes of two major league franchises to Palm Beach Gardens may not be as close to consummation as one owner suggests. Houston Astros' owner Jim Crane told MLB.com a deal that would house his team and the Toronto Blue Jays in new complex is "95 percent" complete. Crane suggested all that's lacking is for the city to sign off on the finances.
The Miami Marlins were well represented in Boca Chica, Dominican Republic earlier this week, where Cuban slugger Jose Dariel Abreu held a showcase for major league teams. New general manager Dan Jennings led a contingent that also included international operations director Albert Gonzalez, pro scout Dave Roberts and Double-A manager Andy Barkett. An American League scout at the showcase said he anticipates the Marlins making a serious play for Abreu, who Major League Baseball declared a free agent last weekend.
Around The League
The Cardinals have been one of the most successful franchises in baseball for more than a decade, and the good times don't appear to be coming to an end any time soon. With one of the most productive farm systems in the big leagues, St. Louis is here to stay.
Dale Sveum, who was dismissed as the Cubs' manager earlier this week, was added to the Royals' coaching staff on Thursday. The Major League coaching contracts of Chino Cadahia and Eddie Rodriguez were not renewed.
Every day, a panel of celebrities will make one pick until they're eliminated by choosing the wrong team. The person who survives the longest will win $10,000 toward the charity of their choice.
Andre Ethier and Chris Capuano were included, but veterans Jerry Hairston, Brandon League, Carlos Marmol and Edinson Volquez were excluded from the 25-man roster the Dodgers submitted Thursday for their National League Division Series against the Braves.
The Tampa Bay Rays once again put the Wild in Wild Card, and now we've got ourselves four divine Division Series all set to begin. The Road to the World Series is down to eight teams, and Division Series play begins Thursday with both Game 1s in the National League.
At Fish Stripes
In one of his first statements as the new GM of the Marlins, Dan Jennings went on record to talk about the team's need for more offensive firepower after an abysmal 2013 season.
The Miami Marlins offense faltered in 2013, but its best player, Giancarlon Stanton, was part of the problem rather than the solution in 2013.
The Miami Marlins had Jose Fernandez anchoring the starting rotation in 2013, but the emergence of Nathan Eovaldi and Henderson Alvarez as potential supporting members was a positive.
The Miami Marlins' offense in 2013 was among the worst in league history, as no player on the team could find a rhythm with the bat.
With the college and NFL football seasons in full season and the regular season at a close, here is an interesting look at four current Marlins prospects and current Major Leaguers that starred on the football field in high school.
The Miami Marlins had one of the worst offenses in baseball history in 2013. How bad was it, and how far back do you have to go to see a worse performance?