475. Andre Dawson
Andre Dawson, also known affectionately as "Hawk," was a 6’3", 195 lb. outfielder from Miami, FL. Born on July 10th, 1954, he was drafted in the 11th round of the 1975 amateur draft by the Montreal Expos. He spent the 1975 season with Lethbridge, in the rookie-level Pioneer League. He hit .330/.378/.553/.931 in 72 games, with 13 home runs, 50 RBI, and 11 stolen bases.
1976 would see Dawson play 40 games with Quebec City for 40 games, and hit .357/.406/.566/.972 for the double-A Eastern League outfit, with nine stolen bases, eight homers, and 27 RBI. He was quickly promoted to triple-A Denver in the American Association, and slugged 20 home runs in 74 games, with 46 RBI, 10 stolen bases, and a .350/.407/.713/1.119 statline. It was his last minor league exposure until 1995, when he played three rehab games with the high-A Brevard County Manatees. After going hitless in his first major league action on September 11th, he reeled off an eight game hitting streak.
Dawson played 10 full seasons for the Expos after his debut, and totaled a .280/.326/.476/.802 statline over 1,443 games, with 225 home runs, 838 RBI, and 253 stolen bases. He was the NL Rookie of the Year in 1977, then earned three all-star selections, six Gold Gloves, and three Silver Slugger Awards. After the 1986 campaign, he signed a free agent contract to play for the Chicago Cubs. During his time north of the border, he made 115 outfield assists, leading the NL with 17 assists from center in 1978 and with 10 in 1981.
During Dawson’s six seasons in Chicago, he earned five all-star selections, won two more Gold Gloves, another Silver Slugger Award, and the 1987 NL MVP. It was by far his most productive season. His 49 home runs and 137 RBI would be 17 and 24 more, respectively than his second best year (1983). Overall, he played in 867 games and hit .285/.327/.507/.834 with 174 round-trippers, 57 stolen bases and 587 RBI. After the 1992 season, the Boston Red Sox would sign him to a two-year, $9.3 million contract.
Dawson played two seasons in Boston, appearing in 196 games and hitting .260/.297/.441/.738 with 29 home runs and 115 RBI. Granted free agency after the 1994 season, the Florida Marlins signed him just prior to the belated opening day in 1995.
1995 would see Dawson play in 79 games for Florida. The team went 30-27 when he started, and just 3-19 in games where he came on as a pinch hitter. On August 16th, he hit a grand slam in the top of the first, doubled to right in the third, and added a solo-jack in the eighth as the Marlins defeated the Atlanta Braves, 8-5. He would total eight home runs and 37 RBI over the season, hitting .257/.305/.434/.739
In 1996, Dawson started in six games, and appeared in 42 overall. On April 7th, he hit four singles with three RBI in a 14-7 loss at home to the San Francisco Giants. The four hits would be a quarter of his output for the season. He missed significant time on the active roster due to his rapidly declining knees, appearing in every month of the season but totaling just 16 hits over 58 at bats. He hit .276/.311/.414/.806 with two home runs and 14 RBI.
Dawson got into the Hall of Fame during his 10th year on the ballot, and was the only player to be selected that season.
All-Time Statline: 121 games, 74-for-284, 36 runs, 12 doubles, three triples, 10 home runs, 51 RBI, zero stolen bases, 11 walks, 58 strikeouts, .261/.306/.430/.736, -1.0 win shares.
474. Chris Coghlan
Coghlan is a 6’, 195 lb. leftfielder from Rockville, MD. Born on June 18th, 1985, he was chosen in the first round of the 2006 amateur draft by Florida with the 36th overall pick out of the University of Mississippi. After leaving school and before making his major league debut in 2009, he played for the Gulf Coast League Marlins (rookie, GCL, two games, two-for-seven, three RBI), the Jamestown Jammers (single-A, New York-Penn League, 28 games, .298/.373/.372/.745, 12 RBI), the Greensboro Hornets (single-A, Southern Atlantic League, 81 games, .325/.419/.534/.953, 10 home runs, 64 RBI), the Jupiter Hammerheads (high-A, Florida State League, 34 games, .200/.277/.331/.608), the Carolina Mudcats (double-A, Southern League, 132 games, .298/.396/.429/.825, 74 RBI, 34 SB), and the New Orleans Zephyrs (triple-A, Pacific Coast League, 25 games, .344/.418/.552/.970, 22 RBI).
Coghlan was called up to play for Florida on May 8th, 2009. He went two-for-four that day with a walk as the Marlins defeated the Colorado Rockies, 8-3. He batted leadoff for most of the season, also occasionally batting second or eighth. Over his 128 games, he earned multiple hits 51 times, including a Marlins’ record eight straight from August 1st through 9th, when he went 19-for-38 with three doubles, six RBI, and eight runs scored. On September 17th, he hit two singles and two doubles, scoring once as the Marlins lost to the Cincinnati Reds, 3-2. Coghlan hit an NL sixth-best .321 with nine home runs and 47 RBI through his rookie season, earning the NL Rookie of the Year award.
2010 would see Coghlan begin the season as Florida’s leadoff hitter and regular left fielder, appearing as such in 91 of Florida’s first 98 games. He had 25 multi-hit games, including seven three-hit games. On June 11th, he went four-for-four with two doubles, a home run and two walks, scoring four times in a 14-9 triumph over the Tampa Bay Rays. His season came to a strange end after going two-for-five in a 5-4, 11-innings win over the Atlanta Braves.
Coghlan’s prematurely ended season closed with him having hit five home runs, 28 RBI, and a .268/.335/.383/.718 statline.
Coghlan started out the 2011 campaign as Florida’s leadoff batter and regular center fielder. He played 65 times and earned multiple hits in 15 of them. On April 6th, he went four-for-five, hitting three doubles and scoring three times in a 7-4 win over the Washington Nationals. On April 25th, he hit two solo home runs, as well as a single and a base on balls in a 5-4 victory against the Los Angeles Dodgers. The Marlins sent him down to the Zephyrs after he went 6-for-40 over a two week span in mid-June.
Coghlan’s downward trend continued in 2012. He collected just 13 hits in 93 at bats over 39 games with Miami. He was sent down to New Orleans for 84 games in total, which would see him bat .284/.375/.435/.810.
In 2013, Coghlan appeared in 70 games for Miami. On May 28th, he hit a triple and a home run with three RBI in a 7-6 loss to the Rays. Over the six games starting on that date and ending on June 2nd, he went 12-for-26 and also collected two doubles and four more RBI. In fact, if you break down his season, he hit three-for-27 over his first dozen games, then go 32-for-91 over his next 36, a .352 average. On April 30th, he hit a pinch single in the ninth and scored the game-tying run in a 2-1 win over the New York Mets. On June 2nd, he went four-for-five with a double, a run scored, and two RBI in an 11-6 win against the Mets. He went four-for-four on September 9th in a loss to the Atlanta Braves, 5-2. He hit .256/.318/.354/.672 as Florida’s utility player. After the season, he was granted free agency.
Coghlan signed on with the Chicago Cubs for the 2014 campaign and hit .283/.352/.452/.804 over 25 games, with nine home runs and 41 RBI. Last season was the best of his career when measured by WAR, and would see him play in 148 contests and hit .250/.341/.443/.784 with a career best 16 homers, 11 stolen bases and 41 RBI. He is currently playing in the NLDS for Chicago against the St. Louis Cardinals.
All-Time Statline: 393 games, 383-for-1419, 197 runs, 82 doubles, 13 triples, 21 home runs, 117 RBI, 27 stolen bases, 134 walks, 265 strikeouts, .270/.337/.390/.727, -0.9 win shares.
473. Frankie De La Cruz
De la Cruz was a 5’11", 214 lb. right-handed pitcher from Santa Domingo in the Dominican Republic. Born on March 12th. 1984, he was signed as a free agent in 2001 by the Detroit Tigers. The following season would see him spend most of the year with the rookie-level Gulf Coast League Tigers, going 1-1 over 20 relief appearances with a 2.63 ERA, 46 strikeouts in 37.2 innings, and a 1.62 WHIP.
In 2003, de la Cruz played nearly another full season with the rookie-level team, and went 2-2 over 22 relief appearances with a 2.59 ERA, 30 strikeouts in 24.1 innings pitched, and a much improved 1.36 WHIP. 2004 would see him finally graduate to single-A, with the West Michigan Whitecaps in the Midwest League. He pitched in 54 games for 54 innings, striking out 44, going 2-4 with a 3.83 ERA, and making 17 saves.
De la Cruz spent all of 2005 (minus 1.2 innings in Erie) with the high-A Lakeland Tigers in the Florida State League. He started in 10 of his 40 games, going 4-3 with a 3.39 ERA, five saves, and 97 strikeouts in 95.2 innings pitched. Aside from that, he spent 2006 and 2007 split between the Erie SeaWolves (double-A, Eastern League, 50 games, 23 starts, 9-12, 3.55 ERA, 172.2 IP, 144 SO, 1.315 WHIP) and the Toledo MudHens (triple-A, International League, 23 games, two starts, 3-0, 3.98 ERA, 40.2 IP, 28 SO, 1.598 WHIP). He also played with Detroit for six games in mid-June, allowing 10 hits and four walks over 6.2 innings of relief work. After the season, the Tigers traded him with Dallas Trahern, Burke Badenhop, Cameron Maybin, Andrew Miller, and Mike Rabelo to the Marlins for Miguel Cabrera and Dontrelle Willis.
De la Cruz made 25 starts for the triple-A Albequerque Dukes in the Pacific Coast League in 2008, spinning a 13-8 record to go with a 4.34 ERA, 119 strikeouts in 147.1 innings, and a 1.35 WHIP. He made his Marlins debut on May 25th, getting his only start with the club on the backside of a doubleheader. He went three innings and allowed two runs on two hits and four walks in a game the Marlins eventually won over the San Diego Padres, 5-4. His next appearance, on June 25th, would see him enter the game in the fifth inning and give up six runs without getting anyone out in a 15-3 loss to the Tampa Bay Rays.
Most of the way through 2009’s spring training, the Padres purchased de la Cruz’ contract from Florida. He only managed to get into parts of three games for San Diego, walking six and allowing two hits in 3.1 innings. Most of the season was spent in the PCL with the Portland Beavers, where he racked up a 2-6 record over 48 games, with nine saves, 59 strikeouts in 69.1 innings, and a 1.38 WHIP.
2010 would see de la Cruz play in the Japan Central League with the Yakult Swallows for nine games, striking out only four batters in 10.1 innings, allowing 14 hits but just a single walk. He signed with the Milwaukee Brewers the following season, and went 6-7 with their PCL affiliate, the Nashville Sounds. He posted a 3.88 ERA over 25 games, 23 of them starts. He struck out 126 in 137.0 innings pitched. Starting in August, he was recalled to pitch for Milwaukee, and put forth his best major league stats to date. He totaled 13 innings over 11 games, and allowed 10 hits and five walks while striking out nine, with a 2.77 ERA.
In 2012, de la Cruz signed a minor league contract with the Chicago Cubs, and spent the year with the PCL Iowa Cubs, going 1-6 while starting in 14 of his 27 appearances, with a 3.80 ERA and more walks (58) than strikeouts (57). The following year would see him split his time between Nashville (1-7, 7.93 ERA) and the Huntsville Stars in the double-A Southern League (2-4, 4.87).
2014 would see de la Cruz pitch with the Sultanes de Monterrey in the Mexican League, and go 4-3 with a 3.67 ERA over 12 starts, but it was the last time he appeared in competitive baseball.
All-Time Statline: six games, one start, zero saves, 0-0, 18.00 ERA, 9.0 IP, 11 BB, four SO, 2.889 WHIP, -0.9 WAR
472. Mike Mordecai
Mordecai was a 5’11", 175 lb. utility infielder from Birmingham, AL. Born on December 13th, 1967, he was drafted by the Atlanta Braves in the sixth round of the 1989 amateur draft out of the University of South Alabama. He joined the single-A level Burlington Braves in the Midwest League after his selection, and played in 65 games hitting .253/.352/.320/.672 with 12 stolen bases, 22 RBI and 39 runs. He also got a sniff at the double-A level, going three-for-eight in limited action with the Greenville Braves in the Southern League.
In 1990, Mordecai spent the entire season at the high-A level with the Carolina League’s Durham Bulls, appearing in 72 games and hitting .280/.379/.406/.785 with 42 runs, 36 RBI, and 10 stolen bases. He remained with the Bulls in 1991, and hit .262/.330/.340/.670 over 109 games, with 30 stolen bases and 42 RBI.
1992 would see Mordecai finally get out of the single-A level for good, and start the season with Greenville. In 65 games, he hit .261/.344/.383/.727. Later in the season, he was promoted to triple-A, with the International League’s Richmond Braves. He played in 36 games at that level to close out the season, and hit .246/.272/.297/.569.
In 1993, Mordecai spent the entire campaign with Richmond, appearing in 72 games and bringing his statline up from the prior season, hitting .268/.318/.346/.664. He stole 10 bases and scored 29 runs.
Mordecai played most of 1994 with Richmond once again, getting into 99 contests and hitting .280/.340/.461/.801, with 14 home runs, 14 stolen bases, and 57 RBI. He was called up to the parent club in Atlanta in mid-May, appearing in four games. On May 10th, he entered as a pinch hitter in the seventh and hit a three-run home run in the bottom of the ninth to make an 8-4 deficit into a one run game. The Braves eventually won in 15 innings, 9-8.
1995 would not see Mordecai appear at the minor league level, as he would spend most of the season on Atlanta’s bench. He appeared in 69 games in total, appearing at every infield position (mostly at second base) and even in center field. He went 21-for-75 overall, with six doubles, three home runs and 11 RBI, with nine walks and 16 strikeouts. He only made five starts, mostly appearing as a late-inning defensive replacement or as a pinch hitter. On June 9th, he entered as a pinch runner in the bottom of the ninth of a 2-2 tie with the St. Louis Cardinals, then hit a walk-off RBI-single in the bottom of the 10th for a 3-2 victory. On August 13th, he again entered as a pinch runner then delivered a walk-off RBI single for a 3-2 triumph against the Colorado Rockies. On September 17th, in his third career start, he hit a double and a two-run home run in a 4-1 win over the Cincinnati Reds.
In 1996, Mordecai went two-for-11 with Richmond, but played in 66 games for Atlanta. He served in much the same function as the year prior, appearing at every infield position and starting 17 games. On August 3rd, he replaced Chipper Jones in the 13th inning of a 3-3 tie with the Los Angeles Dodgers. After a successful bunt sacrifice in the 16th, he delivered the go-ahead RBI with a single to right field in the 18th, as the Braves took the marathon, 5-3. He hit .241/.297/.343/.639 overall, scoring a dozen runs and hitting two round trippers with eight RBI.
Mordecai played 31 games for Richmond in 1997, hitting .311/.361/.467/.828 at the triple-A level with three home runs and 15 RBI. He was in and out of Atlanta’s clubhouse through the season, appearing in 61 games. Again, he played at every infield position, but this time spent more time at third base. He only collected 14 hits over the course of the season, hitting .173/.227/.222/.449. At this point, the Braves had seen enough, and granted his free agency during the offseason.
1998 would see Mordecai sign a free agent contract to play for the Montreal Expos. Aside from eight games at two minor league levels where he went five-for-30 (the last minor league appearances of his career), he spent the season with the parent club north of the border. He hit .202/.258/.345/.602 for the Expos, playing mostly shortstop but logging time at every other position. He started in 21 games, appearing in 73 overall. On August 6th, in a 9-0 victory over the Dodgers, he hit a two-run homer in the fourth and later added a double. On September 11th, he hit an RBI double in the fifth and an infield RBI single in the sixth as the Expos topped the New York Mets by a 5-1 final count.
In 1999, Mordecai played in a career high 109 contests for Montreal. Primarily a second baseman that season, he also played every other infield position and hit .235/.297/.363/.660 with a career high five home runs and 25 RBI. On April 30th, he entered as a defensive replacement in the top of the eighth, then delivered a walkoff infield RBI single with two out in the bottom of the ninth for a 3-2 win over the Cardinals. On May 30th, he hit a double and a home run with two RBI, scoring three times in a 6-4 win against the San Francisco Giants.
Mordecai played in 86 games for Montreal in 2000, and set his career high in batting average, hitting .284/.335/.450/.785 with 16 doubles, four homers, and 16 RBI. On May 9th, he singled in the seventh then tied the contest at two in the bottom of the ninth with a one-out RBI double, then scored the winning run in a 3-2 win over the Philadelphia Phillies. On May 14th, he entered a game against the Cubs with a 13-11 lead as a defensive replacement in the ninth. After Dustin Hermanson allowed the Cubs to score four times that inning, Mordecai came to the plate with one out and the score tied at 15, then delivered a walkoff RBI single.
2001 would see Mordecai play at every infield position, primarily at third base, also seeing time at catcher and in right field. He started in 56 of his 96 games for the Expos, hitting .280/.330/.398/.727 with 17 doubles and a career high 32 RBI. On July 8th, he went three-for-three with two doubles and an RBI, drawing a walk in a loss to the Toronto Blue Jays, 9-3. He hit a double and a two-run homer on August 8th, in a 6-5 win over St. Louis.
In 2002, Mordecai played in 55 games for the Expos before getting traded with Graeme Lloyd, Carl Pavano, Justin Wayne, and Don Levinski to the Marlins for Claudio Vargas, Cliff Floyd, Wilton Guerrero and cash on July 11th. After hitting .203/.289/.257/.546 for Montreal, Mordecai improved his statline to .286/.337/.338/.675 for Florida. On August 1st, he went two-for-two and drew a walk, scoring and collecting an RBI in a win against the Cardinals, 4-0.
Mordecai hit .213/.276/.326/.601 over 65 games in 2003 for Florida, going 19-for-89, scoring 11 runs, hitting four doubles, two home runs, eight RBI, and a career high three stolen bases. On July 23rd, he entered a 4-4 tie in the top of the 10th against the Braves as a pinch runner, then hit a solo home run in the top of the 12th to give the Marlins a 5-4 victory.
2004 would see Mordecai in 69 games for the Marlins, and hit 19-for-84 for a .226/.278/.298/.575 statline. He went three-for-five with an RBI on June 1st in a 7-6 loss to the Cincinnati Reds. He hit his final home run in the last game of the season, a two-run job in a 10-4 loss to the Philadelphia Phillies.
2005 would be Mordecai get his last taste of professional baseball. He got into two games in September, going 0-for-2 with a strikeout. He is currently the director of all training for the Toronto Blue Jays minor league system.
All-Time Statline: 174 games, 60-for-252, 28 runs, 11 doubles, zero triples, three home runs, 20 RBI, four stolen bases, 19 walks, 53 strikeouts, .238/.293/.317/.611, -0.9 win shares.
471. Brian Edmondson
Edmondson was a 6’2", 165 lb. right-handed pitcher from Fontana, CA. Born on January 29th, 1973, he was a third-round selection of the Detroit Tigers in the 1991 amateur draft. Soon after that, the rookie-level Bristol Tigers would welcome him to the Appalachian League and see him go 4-4 over 12 starts, with a 4.57 ERA. He was promoted to the single-A Fayetteville Generals in the South Atlantic League the following season. He would go 10-6 with a 3.37 ERA, starting in 27 of his 28 appearances and racking up a 1.37 WHIP.
In 1993, Edmondson joined the Lakeland Tigers in the high-A Florida State League, and went 8-5, 2.99 over 19 starts with a 1.38 WHIP. He moved up to the double-A level London Tigers near the end of the season in the Eastern league, where he had less success, going 0-4 over five starts with a 6.26 ERA and a 1.87 WHIP.
In 1994, Edmondson joined the Trenton Tigers, Detroit’s new Eastern League affiliate. He spent the whole season there, and went 11-9 in 26 starts. He posted a 4.56 ERA and a 1.43 WHIP, striking out 90 in 162 innings. Just prior to the 1995 minor league campaign, the New York Mets selected him off waivers from the Tigers.
Edmondson spent two and a half seasons with the Binghampton Mets in the Eastern League, appearing in 76 games and making 35 starts. He posted a 15-17 record in that time, and averaged 4.25 earned runs per nine innings. Near the end of May in 1997, he finally made the jump to triple-A, joining the Norfolk Tides in the International League, making starts in four of his 31 appearances and going 4-3 with a 2.90 ERA and a 1.45 WHIP with 65 strikeouts in 68.2 innings pitched. After the season, the Atlanta Braves claimed him from the Mets in the Rule 5 Draft.
The Rule 5 Draft necessitates that any player selected must remain on the major league roster for the entire season or else be subject to getting reclaimed by the original club. Edmonson began the campaign on Atlanta’s opening day roster, and made 10 appearances for the Braves during the first two months of the season. In his first major league game, on April 2nd, he entered the game in the 11th inning of an 8-6 loss to the Milwaukee Brewers, giving up two runs in 0.2 innings. He went 0-1 with a blown save and a 4.32 ERA over 16.2 innings for Atlanta, with eight strikeouts and a 1.320 WHIP. The Braves lost him on June 4th, when he failed to clear waivers and joined the Florida Marlins.
Edmondson made at least nine appearances per month for the Marlins, totaling 43 games by the end of the season. From June 8th through July 12th, he appeared in a dozen games, holding opposing batters to a sub-one WHIP and a 1.47 ERA and striking out 13 over 18.1 innings. It started on June 8th, when he earned his first major league win by pitching the 15th through the 17th inning and allowing two singles while striking out three in a 4-3 win against the Toronto Blue Jays. On July 4th, he earned the win when he entered in the fourth and pitched through the end of the eighth, allowing a single earned run and striking out three in a 3-2 win over the Montreal Expos. In total for Florida, he went 4-3 with a 3.79 ERA and a 1.534 WHIP, striking out 32 in 59.1 innings.
In 1999, Edmondson led the Marlins relief corps with 94.0 innings pitched, and struck out 58 batters. He went 5-8 in 68 appearances with a 5.84 ERA and a 1.596 WHIP. He earned his first win of the season on April 27th, pitching 3.1 innings of shutout ball against the Chicago Cubs, striking out three and hitting two doubles with an RBI. Incidentally, he went four-for-11 from the plate on the season, his only four major league hits. On September 8th, he struck out three and allowed no baserunners in 1.2 innings of a 5-4, 13-inning win over the Los Angeles Dodgers.
Just before the start of the 2000 season, Edmondson had surgery for a torn labrum and rotator cuff, spending the whole season on the DL. He made his return in 2001, joining the high-A Brevard County Manatees in the FSL on opening day, and going 5-2 with a 1.73 ERA over 16 appearances, with 21 strikeouts in 26 innings and a 1.04 WHIP. He joined the Eastern League’s Portland Beavers in late-May, then duplicated his 1.73 ERA over 14 games, going 2-3 in 26 innings with a 0.81 WHIP. He worked his way up to the Calgary Cannons in the triple-A Pacific Coast League, going 2-5 with an 8.49 ERA over 23 games with a 1.96 WHIP. Florida released Edmondson on March 8th, 2002.
Edmondson signed a minor league deal with the Cleveland Indians, and played the start of the season with the double-A Akron Aeros in the Eastern League, going 2-0 over seven innings and not giving up a run. He struck out six and allowed three baserunners. The second part of the season would see him with the Erie Seawolves, Detroit’s entrant in the Eastern League. In 38 games, he went 3-2 with a 4.00 ERA, 36 K’s in 45 IP, and a 1.42 WHIP.
In 2003, Edmondson went 8-7, 1.95 with the independent Northeast League’s Elmira Pioneers, striking out 114 in 148 innings and posting a 0.98 WHIP. It was the last competitive baseball he would appear in.
All-Time Statline: 111 games, zero starts, one save, 9-11, 5.05 ERA, 153.1 IP, 73 BB, 90 SO, 1.572 WHIP, -0.9 WAR
Thanks for reading today's feature. Remember to come back every day for another fix of Miami Marlins History.