On February 3rd, 12 Marlins from across all levels and eras of Marlins baseball will celebrate their birthdays from the age of 19 all the way up to 56. I’m listing them in the order of their last appearance with the organization.
Gunner Pollman (23)
Pollman is a 6’2”, 195 lb. catcher from West Linn, Oregon. In 2016, the Marlins chose him in the 26th round, 773rd overall out of Sacramento State University. In three seasons of collegiate baseball he put up a .219/.293/.310 slashline.
Pollman has split his first three seasons between the GCL Marlins, the Greensboro Grasshoppers, and the Jupiter Hammerheads, aggregating a .190/.262/.270 slashline and a .996 fielding percentage in 69 career professional games.
Carlos Diaz (26)
Carlos De Jesus Diaz is a 6’3”, 190 lb. left handed pitcher from Le Vega, Dominican Republic. Undrafted, he would sign with the Cleveland Indians in 2012, appearing with their DSL and AZL squads over the next two seasons. He was out of organized baseball following the 2013 season.
Diaz played in 2016 with the Tucson Saguaros in the Pecos League, helping the team to a 51-14 record by going 2-0 in four starts, striking out 20 in 17 innings of work. In 2017, he started with the Gary Southshore Railcats in the American Association, but eventually landed with the GCL Marlins, where he allowed one hit and no runs in two innings of work. He also pitched 4 1⁄3 shutout innings for the Greensboro Grasshoppers, striking out six. In December, the Marlins lost him in the Rule 5 Minor league draft to the Oakland Athletics.
Mario Prenza (19)
Mario Prenza is a 6’, 160 lb. outfielder from Santo Domingo, Dominican Republic. The Marlins signed him to a free agent deal in 2015, when he was just 16-years-old.
Prenza made his debut in the 2016 Dominican Summer League, going 15-for-110 and slugging just .200 in 32 contests. At the same level in 2017, he went 6-for-27 with six runs and five RBI in 10 games.
Victor Delgado (23)
The Marlins picked up Delgado in May of 2016, and he ended up appearing at three levels for Miami. He pitched 4 2⁄3 innings with GCL, 5 1⁄3 with the Batavia Muckdogs, and two with the Greensboro Grasshoppers, with an aggregate 1-2 record, a 9.00 ERA, seven whiffs in 12 innings, and a WHIP of 2.42. He last pitched with Aguilar del Zulia in the 2016-17 Venezuelan Winter League.
Rett Varner (30)
Joseph Rett Varner was a 6’4”, 190 lb. right-handed pitcher from Trophy Club, Texas. The Florida Marlins chose him in the sixth round of the 2010 draft with the 197th overall choice out of the University of Texas at Arlington. Varner was 11-10 with a 4.10 ERA, 163 strikeouts in 191 innings, and a 1.42 WHIP in 46 collegiate contests.
Varner spent five seasons in the Florida / Miami Marlins system, between the GCL Marlins, the Jamestown Jammers, the Greensboro Grasshoppers, the Jupiter Hammerheads, the Jacksonville Suns, and the New Orleans Zephyrs before being released prior to the 2015 campaign. He left organized baseball with a 26-23 record, starting in 53 of his 132 contests. He had a 4.19 ERA, a 1.46 WHIP, and 257 strikeouts in 363 innings.
Matthew LaNeve (25)
Matthew Zachary LaNeve was a 6’ shortstop from Gibsonia, Pennsylvania. In 2011, the Florida Marlins chose him in the 44th round of the draft, with the 1,333rd pick out of Pine Richland HS. LaNeve instead decided to attend the University of Southern Mississippi, where he slashed .330/.356/.470 in 54 contests his freshman year.
Bart Miadich (42)
John Miadich was a 6’4”, 205 lb. right-handed pitcher from Lake Oswego, Oregon. The Colorado Rockies chose him in the 49th round in 1994, with the 1,326th selection. He didn’t sign, but four years later joined the Boston Red Sox system.
From 1998 through 2004, Miadich appeared in the systems of the Sox, the Arizona Diamondbacks, the Anaheim Angels, the Texas Rangers, and the San Diego Padres. In 2005, he started the season with the Yomiuri Giants in Japan’s Central League, then midseason joined the Albuquerque Isotopes for the Marlins in the Pacific Coast League.
Miadich appeared for Albuquerque in 29 games in 2005, going 3-2 with a 2.20 ERA. He got 59 batters to wave in just 32 2⁄3 innings, a ridiculous 16.26 whiff rate per nine innings, and closed the year with a 1.32 WHIP.
In 2006, Miadich went 3-2 in 35 trips out of the pen, striking out 55 in 41 2⁄3 innings with a 1.18 WHIP and a 3.67 ERA. Later on that year, he appeared with the Durham Bulls for the Tampa Bay Rays.
David Marchbanks (36)
Robert David Marchbanks was a 6’2”, 190 lb. left-handed pitcher from Spartanburg, South Carolina. The Marlins picked him in the seventh round of the 2003 draft with the 203rd choice out of the University of South Carolina. Marchbanks was a 31-8 pitcher in college, putting up a 3.68 ERA and a 1.30 WHIP, striking out 214 in 291 innings.
Despite his high apparent ceiling, Marchbanks only lasted under two seasons in affiliated ball. He started in 16 of his 23 appearances from between the Jamestown Jammers, the Greensboro Grasshoppers, the Carolina Mudcats, and the GCL Marlins, posting a 2-3 record, a 3.12 ERA, a 1.23 WHIP, and 54 K’s in 78 innings.
In 2005, Marchbanks played for the Mid-Missouri Mavericks in the Frontier League, but only lasted four games for the team.
Eric Owens (47)
Eric Blake Owens was a 6’, 198 lb. utility player from Danville, Virginia. He played 149 or more major league games at each position excepting catcher, first baseman, and pitcher. That’s over six seasons at each of six different positions. In 1992, the Cincinnati Reds picked him in the fourth round of the draft, 101st off the board out of Ferrum College, where he slashed .428/.522/.732 with 18 homers and 112 RBI in 113 games.
In 1995, Owens made his major league debut with the Reds, and later also appeared for the Milwaukee Brewers and the San Diego Padres. Just prior to the 2001 seaosn, the Padres traded him with Matt Clement and Omar Ortiz to the Marlins for Mark Kotsay and Cesar Crespo.
Over the next two seasons, Owens made 250 appearances for the Marlins, slashing out a .261/.313/.350 line while playing substantial time in each of the three outfield positions.
Owens signed through free agency in 2003 with the Anaheim Angels, and later played for Detroit’s triple-A affiliate the Toledo MudHens. He played 2005 in the Mexican League with the Tijuana Petroleros.
Rich Scheid (53)
Richard Paul Scheid was a 6’3”, 185 lb. left-handed pitcher from Staten Island, New York. In 1986, the New York Yankees spent their second round pick on him, 53rd off the board out of Seton Hall University. He was 18-6 for the Pirates, putting up a 2.92 ERA, striking out 219 in 185 frames, and earning a 1.29 WHIP.
Before getting to the majors with the Houston Astros in 1992, Scheid would find himself in the farm systems of the Yankees, the Chicago Cubs and the Chicago White Sox. The Marlins signed him as a free agent a month before their inaugural opener.
Scheid spent most of his three seasons in Florida’s system with their triple-A affiliate, first the Edmonton Trappers then the Charlotte Knights. He did appear in 14 contests for the Marlins in 1994 and 1995, earning a 1-3 record and a 3.98 ERA. He struck out 27 in 43 innings, and finished with a 1.49 WHIP. After the Marlins released him, he was out of baseball for a year, then started five games for the Duluth-Superior Dukes in 1997, going 1-4.
Joe Klink (56)
Joseph Charles Klink was a 5’11”, 175 lb. left-handed pitcher from Johnstown, Pennsylvania. In 1983, he was picked in the 36th round of the draft by the New York Mets, with the 801st choice out of the University of St. Thomas.
Aside from his time with the Marlins and in the Mets system, Klink also appeared for the Minnesota Twins, the Oakland Athletics, the Los Angeles Dodgers, the Cleveland Indians, and the Seattle Mariners.
Klink signed with the Marlins through free agency on January 27th, 1993, two months before they opened their first season against the Los Angeles Dodgers. In 59 games for the first-ever version of the Marlins, he earned an 0-2 record and a 4.97 ERA with 22 strikeouts in 38 innings and a 1.61 WHIP.
Vinny Hughes (49)
Vincent Hughes was a 5’9”, 225 lb. corner infielder from Wappingers Falls, New York. He played in nine games for the Erie Sailors in 1992, in the Marlins system before the Marlins had a major league franchise. He was six-for-20 with a double, a triple, a homer, and four RBI, with two walks and three strikeouts.