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All-Time Marlins Countdown: Chapter 21

Today’s story features another six Marlins from across their history, including Jeff Francoeur and Edwin Jackson.

San Diego Padres v Miami Marlins Photo by Rob Foldy/Getty Images

The Marlins have seen 630 players take the field for a regular season game through their first 28 seasons.

Today’s article focuses on six more that you may have heard of. Each of these players was below replacement level for the Marlins, with between 20 and 74 batters faced / plate appearances.

495. Jeff Francoeur

Jeff Francoeur is Jon Bois’ favorite worst baseball player. A first round draftee of the Atlanta Braves in 2002, he made his major league debut for them three years later and slashed .300/.336/.549 in 70 games, with 14 home runs and 45 RBI. He went on to play every game for the next two seasons, and hit .276/.315/.446 with 48 homers and 208 RBI, winning a Gold Glove in right field for 2007.

Francoeur played another year and a half with the Braves, and later played with the New York Mets, the Texas Rangers, the Kansas City Royals, the San Francisco Giants, the San Diego Padres, and the Philadelphia Phillies before rejoining the Braves for the start of the 2016 campaign. Nearing the trade deadline that season, Francoeur was moved as part of a three-player deal also involving the Texas Rangers, personally landing on the Marlins.

Los Angeles Dodgers v Miami Marlins Photo by Rob Foldy/Getty Images

Francoeur’s best game with Miami was likely on August 26, soon after joining the team. He batted sixth in that game, played in right field, and went three-for-four, drawing a walk and scoring a run in a 7-6 win against the Padres.

Francoeur appeared in 26 games down the stretch with the Marlins in what would be his final major league action. He hit 14-for-50 with two doubles, a triple, and one RBI. He drew four walks, struck out 15 times, and was caught stealing twice without a successful swipe. Defensively, he played 97 innings in total for Miami, 50 in right field, 46 in left, and even one inning at third base for the first time in his career, all without an error. the Marlins released him after the season to free agency.

494. Johnny Ruffin

Johnny Ruffin was a six-foot-three right-handed pitcher from Butler, Alabama. In 1988, the Chicago White Sox took him in the fourth round. He remained in their minor league system until the 1993 trade deadline, when, then ranked as the number 74 prospect by Baseball America, the Sox traded him with Jeff Pierce to the Cincinnati Reds for knuckleballer Tim Belcher.

Johnny Ruffin #48

Ruffin got to the majors with the Reds that year, and pitched out of their bullpen for the next four seasons. In 131 games, he was 10-6 with a 3.88 ERA, a 1.385 WHIP, and 154 whiffs in 183 13 innings. From 1997 through 1999, Ruffin didn’t get back to the major leagues, even appearing in one game for Kintetsu in the Japan Pacific League.

During that four-season span, Ruffin was affiliated with the Boston Red Sox, the Milwaukee Brewers, the New York Mets, the Los Angeles Dodgers, and the Arizona Diamondbacks. It was with Arizona that Ruffin reemerged at the major league level, pitching in five games for them in 2000. Released immediately following the 2000 season, the Marlins signed him through free agency two months later.

Ruffin appeared mostly at Florida’s Triple-A level for them in 2001, playing in 37 games for the Calgary Cannons and posting a 2-3 record with a 4.36 ERA, 47 K’s in 33 innings, and a 1.424 WHIP. In late-July, the Marlins called him up to the majors, where he appeared in three games.

Ruffin allowed four runs, including two earned in 3 23 innings of work. He allowed five hits and four walks, striking out four. The only game in which he had a positive WPA was his last, on August 2 against the Brewers. In that one, he pitched 1 13 hitless innings, walking one and striking out two. Of his 76 pitches with the Marlins, he only plated 54 percent of them.

493. John Roskos

John Roskos was drafted by the Florida Marlins in the second round back in 1993 out of Cibola HS in Albuquerque, New Mexico. A Victorville, California native, Roskos is a five-foot-11 first baseman and outfielder.

In 1998, Roskos debuted with the Marlins, appearing in 10 games as a pinch hitter. He went one-for-10 and struck out five times. His only safe base-hit was on April 26, when he singled while pinch hitting for Eric Ludwick. He eventually scored, and the Marlins won, 12-6.

John Roskos #19

Roskos didn’t get back to the majors until the end of the 1999 campaign, when he played in 13 games for Florida. He pinch-hit in the first 12 of them, going two-for-11 with a pair of doubles and an RBI. He drew a walk and struck out seven times. In his final appearance, the Marlins last game of the season, he played four innings as catcher, handling five chances without an error.

Roskos was granted free agency after the end of the season, and signed with the Padres. He made what would be the final appearances of his major league career in 2000 while playing with them, going one-for-27 in 14 games.

492. Edwin Jackson

Edwin Jackson is a native of Neu-Ulm, Germany. In 2001, the Dodgers drafted him in the sixth round out of Shaw High School in Columbus, Georgia. Near the end of the 2000 season, he made his major league debut on his 20th birthday, starting against Arizona and earning the victory by allowing one run on four hits and no walks in six innings. He struck out four.

Jackson holds the major league record by playing for more teams than any other baseball player, currently 14. Before making his way to the Marlins in 2016, he played for the Dodgers, the Tampa Bay Devil Rays, the Detroit Tigers, the Diamondbacks, the White Sox, the St. Louis Cardinals, the Washington Nationals, and the Chicago Cubs. In 340 games, including 262 starts, he was 88-107 with a 4.58 ERA, 1267 K’s in 1640 13 innings, and a 1.448 WHIP. He was an All-Star for the Tigers in 2009.

Miami Marlins spring training David Santiago/El Nuevo Herald/Tribune News Service via Getty Images

Jackson started the 2016 season with the Marlins after signing a contract in January for the league-minimum. Miami used him strictly as a reliever during his tenure with the Marlins, and he wasn’t that bad through his first six appearances with the team. In 6 23 innings, he allowed only one run on seven hits and four walks, striking out three. Unfortunately, he gave up six in his next three innings of work, drawing his Miami career to a close. The Marlins were 0-8 in games that Jackson appeared in. He put 117-of-192 pitches over the plate.

The Marlins released Jackson on June 2, and he went on to play major league ball with the Padres, the Baltimore Orioles, the Oakland Athletics, the Toronto Blue Jays, making second runs with Detroit and with Washington. He spent 2020 as a free agent with Arizona, but was released before the belated start to the season.

491. Osvaldo Martínez

Shortstop Osvaldo Martínez was the Marlins 11th round pick in 2006. A right-handed hitter, Martínez is a native of Carolina, Puerto Rico. In 2008, with the Greensboro Grasshoppers at the Single-A level, Martínez hit .296/.331/.411 in 85 games.

In 2010 at the Double-A level with the Jacksonville Suns, Martínez appeared in 130 games and hit .302/.372/.401. After the conclusion of the minor leagues season, and after the major league rosters expanded, Martínez made his debut with the Marlins. In 14 games, he went 14-for-43 with four doubles, a triple, and two RBI. He drew four walks and struck out six times. On October 3, in the final game of the season, Martínez went two-for-four and scored twice in a 5-2 victory against the Pittsburgh Pirates.

Prior to the 2011 season, Martínez was ranked as the Marlins number five prospect by Baseball America. He went three-for-23 in the majors that season. On September 29, Martínez was traded with Jhan Marines to the White Sox for Ricardo Andres and Ozzie Guillen.

490. Dewayne Wise

Columbia, South Carolina native Dewayne Wise is a left-handed hitting and throwing outfielder. In 1997, the Reds drafted him in the fifth round out of Chapin High School. After the 1999 season, the Toronto Blue Jays took him from the Reds in the rule 5 draft.

Before the 2011 season, Wise played at the major league level for the Blue Jays, the Braves, the Reds, and the White Sox. Prior to 2011 Spring Training, the Marlins signed Wise through free agency. They cut him before the season, and he signed a deal to return to the Blue Jays. The Jays subsequently released him and the Marlins resigned him.

From June 17 through August 20, Wise appeared in 49 of Florida’s 57 games, going 16-for-67 with two doubles and five RBI. He scored drew three walks, stole four bases, scored six runs, and struck out 21 times. In 141 23 innings in the outfield for the Marlins (127 23 in center, 14 innings in left), Wise handled 49 chances cleanly without an error. On August 26, the Jays once again got their hands on Wise, selecting him off waivers from Florida.

After completing the 2011 season with the Jays, Wise went on to play for the New York Yankees before playing his final two major leagues seasons back with the White Sox.