Throughout the 2016-17 offseason, Fish Stripes is counting down the top 100 all-time Marlins, using the Wins Above Replacement metric (WAR). Today’s Marlin, first baseman Carlos Delgado, earned a value of 2.7 while with the team.
Delgado, born on June 25th, 1972, was a 6’3”, 215 lb. native of Aguadilla, Puerto Rico. He signed a free agent contract with the Toronto Blue Jays in 1988 as a 16-year old phenom out of Puerto Rico.
The slugger made his Major League debut in 1993, making two plate appearances and catching for the Toronto Blue Jays in the last days of the season. Ultimately, Delgado would spend 12 seasons in Toronto, hitting .282 with 336 home runs and 1,058 RBI in 1,423 games. He earned two all-star selections and three Silver Slugger awards during his years with the Blue Jays.
Granted free agency following the 2004 season, Delgado signed a free agent contract to play for the Florida Marlins.
During 2005, his only season as a Marlin, Delgado played first base and hit .301 with a NL ninth-best 33 home runs and a league fifth-best 115 RBI. His OBP of .399 was the league's third best. Delgado finished '05 having caught the eye of NL MVP voters, who named him sixth in the final count. Florida traded him with cash to the New York Mets for Grant Psomas, Mike Jacobs and Yusmeiro Petit.
Florida posted a 74-70 record with Delgado in the lineup, versus 9-9 when he sat. He had 42 multihit games, including seven with three or more. He batted fourth most of the time, with 64 games batting third.
On April 5th, in Florida’s opener, Delgado collected a season-high four hits, hitting three singles and a double with three RBI in a 9-0 win over the Atlanta Braves. Four days later, in a 3-2, 10-inning loss to the Washington Nationals, he accounted for all of Miami’s offense by hitting an RBI-groundout in the sixth and a game-tying solo shot in the ninth. May 3rd would see him go three-for-four, with a two-run double in the third, a solo homer in the fifth, a walk in the seventh, and an RBI-double in the ninth as the Marlins topped the Braves, 11-6. On May 23rd, he helped the Marlins earn a 5-2 win over the Philadelphia Phillies with a single in the fourth, a three-run homer in the sixth, and another single in the eighth. May 29th would see him hit an RBI-single and a three-run shot in a 6-3 defeat of the New York Mets. On June 8th, he collected a season-high five RBI in a 5-4 Miami win over the Seattle Mariners with an RBI-double, a three-run homer, and a bases-loaded walk. On September 16th, he hit two doubles and a homer against the Phillies, but the Marlins lost, 13-3.
Delgado would play his last four Major League seasons with the Mets, hitting 104 home runs and 339 RBI with a .267 average. He was granted free agency following the season.
After recovering from hip surgery, Delgado signed on with the Boston Red Sox, but his rehab was ultimately unsuccessful, and he announced his official retirement on April 13, 2011.