A member of the Florida Marlins organization since inauguration, outfielder Chuck Carr was known far more for his speed than his power. On this day a quarter century ago, however, Carr did something he would do just once during his Major League Baseball career, and something no Marlin had ever done before him.
The Marlins and St. Louis Cardinals met for the second game of a four-game set at Joe Robbie Stadium on Aug. 9, 1994. When all was said and done, Carr would flex his muscles with the only walk-off home run of his career—a two-run blast in the bottom of the ninth—and the first in franchise history.
Starting pitchers Allen Watson for St. Louis and Mark Gardner for Florida had each given their teams quality starts. In the battle of the bullpens, it was the Marlins who would have the upper-hand—Luis Aquino and Yorkis Perez had combined for three shutout innings of relief to give Florida a chance to walk it off.
Against right-hander Vicente Palacios, shortstop Kurt Abbott would get things going with a hustle double to start the frame. After pinch hitter Jerry Browne successfully bunted Abbott to third, Carr came to the plate needing only to lift a fly ball to end the contest against his former team (the Marlins acquired him in the 1992 expansion draft).
Lift a fly ball, Carr would. He hammered the 2-2 pitch from Palacios over the right field wall for a two-run walk-off home run to give the Marlins a 5-3 victory.
Prior to Carr’s blast, Abbott and catcher Benito Santiago had combined for five of the Marlins’ 10 hits and two of their three RBIs. Tom Pagnozzi, the St. Louis catcher who had a walk-off hit against Florida earlier in the year, homered in the loss. Gregg Jefferies scored two of the three St. Louis runs. Perez worked a scoreless eighth to earn the win.
Unfortunately for the Marlins, that would be their final victory of the 1994 season. The Cardinals took the next two games before the infamous work stoppage took effect and the remainder of the season was ultimately canceled.
A fan favorite, Carr would homer just eight times in three full seasons with the Marlins and 13 times in his big league career. The Carr blast marked the seventh walk-off win for the Marlins during the 1994 campaign and the 12th in franchise history to that point, but it was the first by way of the long ball. It happened on this day 25 years ago.