Through their first 28 seasons of play, the Florida and Miami Marlins have employed 630 players in a regular season game.
We’ve already covered 408 of them in this offseason-long series. Now in the bracket of players who totaled between 250 and 799 batters faced/plate appearances, today’s group of four all finished the Marlins portion of their careers at replacement level, according to baseball reference.
222. Donnie Murphy
Donnie Murphy is a five-foot-10 infielder from Lakewood, California. In 2002, the Kansas City Royals drafted him in the fifth round out of Orange Coast College. After making his major league debut in 2004, he appeared in 39 games over two seasons with them, and slashed .163/.228/.269. Obviously not quite ready for for the majors, at least on the offensive side of the equation, Murphy spent the entire 2006 season with the Royals Double-A affiliate, the Wichita Wranglers.
After the 2006 season, the Oakland Athletics purchased Murphy’s contract from the Royals. Over the two seasons following, he appeared in another 88 contests, and slashed .204/.282/.376 with nine homers and 34 RBI. After spending the 2009 campaign with the Baltimore Orioles Triple-A affiliate, the Norfolk Tides, he signed with the Marlins through free agency.
Murphy got into 29 games for the Marlins in 2010, and went 14-for-44 at the plate with six doubles, a triple, and three homers. He totaled 16 RBI, drew two walks, scored nine runs, and struck out 19 times. On July 19, Murphy totaled the highest WPA I’ve ever seen in one plate appearance. In the bottom of the ninth inning, with a runner on first and two out, trailing the Colorado Rockies by an 8-7 score, Murphy thwacked the second pitch of his plate appearance against Huston Street over the right-center field fence for a walk-off victory.
Murphy totaled 36 games for the 2011 Marlins, going 17-for-92 with four doubles, a triple, and two home runs with nine RBI. He drew four walks, scored 10 runs, and struck out 21 times. In 52 games for Miami in 2012, he hit .216 with three homers and 12 RBI.
Defensively during his time with Florida and Miami, Murphy played 263 1⁄3 innings at third base (.969 fielding percentage), 174 innings at shortstop (.989 fielding percentage), and 85 1⁄3 innings at second base (1.000 fielding percentage).
Over the three seasons following his time with the Marlins, Murphy signed with the Chicago Cubs, the Cincinnati Reds, the Atlanta Braves, the Texas Rangers, and the Milwaukee Brewers, making appearances in the majors with the Cubs and the Rangers.
221. Chad Gaudin
Metairie, Louisiana native Chad Gaudin is a five-foot-10 right-handed pitcher. In 2001, the Tampa Bay Devil Rays took him in round 34 out of high school.
Despite his late position in the draft, Gaudin only took two seasons to get to the major leagues with Tampa Bay. Between 2003 and 2011, he also played for the Toronto Blue Jays, the Oakland Athletics, the Chicago Cubs, the San Diego Padres, the New York Yankees, and the Washington Nationals. Through the pre-Marlins portion of his career, he was 36-40 with a 4.63 ERA in 268 games, including 75 starts. He struck out 528 in 670 innings, racking up a 1.53 WHIP.
Gaudin signed with the Marlins through free agency for the 2012 season. He made 46 trips out of the bullpen, going 4-2 with a 4.54 ERA and 57 K’s in 69 1⁄3 innings with a 1.413 WHIP. Opponents slashed .274/.344/.411, as Gaudin put 63 percent of his pitches in the strike zone. He stranded 69 percent of his inherited runners through the season.
On April 15, Gaudin came into the ninth inning in a 4-4 tie with the Houston Astros, and pitched three scoreless innings to earn a victory. On July 21, Gaudin struck out five in 3 2⁄3 scoreless innings against the Pittsburgh Pirates, but the Marlins lost, 5-1.
Gaudin played one more major league season after his year with Miami. In 2013, he pitched in 30 games fo the San Francisco Giants, starting 12 of them. He was 5-2 with a 3.06 ERA. After three seasons out of ball, he played another four years with several clubs in the Mexican League.
220. Matt Herges
Matt Herges is a lefty hitting, right-handed six-foot pitcher from Champaign, Illinois. After going undrafted out of Illinois State University, he signed his first professional deal with the Los Angeles Dodgers in 1992, at the age of 22.
After making his major league debut in 1999 with the Dodgers, Herges also played at the major league level for the Montreal Expos, the San Diego Padres, the San Francisco Giants, and the Arizona Diamondbacks. He totaled a 3.83 ERA and 4.4 brWAR over his first 378 appearances, going 30-26 with a 1.43 WHIP. He signed with the Marlins through free agency for the 2006 season.
Herges put up a 1.718 in his season with the Marlins, going 2-3 with a 4.31 ERA in 66 games. He struck out 36 in 71 innings, collecting strikes on 63 percent of his pitches. Opponents slashed a healthy .321/.385/.447 in 328 plate appearances, and Herges only stranded 57 percent of his 54 inherited baserunners.
After his season with the Marlins, Herges played three more major league seasons between the Colorado Rockies and the Cleveland Indians. He went 11-6 with a 3.96 ERA in 123 appearances. Since his retirement from playing, he’s made the successful transition to coaching. In 2020, he was the pitching coach for the Arizona Diamondbacks.
219. John Cangelosi
Switch-hitter John Cangelosi is a five-foot-eight outfielder from Brooklyn, New York. In 1982, he started his professional career in earnest after getting drafted in the fourth round by the Chicago White Sox.
Between his time getting drafted and 1996, Cangelosi appeared at the major league level with the White Sox, the Pittsburgh Pirates, the Texas Rangers, the New York Mets, and the Houston Astros, hitting .251, stealing 147 bases, and drawing more walks (309) than strikeouts (262).
Following the 1996 season, the Marlins signed Cangelosi for ultimately two seasons. He slashed right around his career figures, putting up a .248/.342/.309 line with two homers and 22 RBI in 207 contests. He drew 49 walks and struck out 56 times, with 47 runs scored and seven stolen bases. On June 25, 1997, he went four-for-five with three RBI in a 7-5 victory over the Philadelphia Phillies. In the Marlins first postseason appearance, Cangelosi went two-for-nine with a walk.
In 572 1⁄3 defensive innings for the Marlins in the outfield, Cangelosi made two errors to land on a .987 fielding percentage. After his second season with the Marlins, he played seven games with the Colorado Rockies in what would be the final appearances of his major league career.
Thanks for reading. Check back tomorrow for four more Marlins on the road to number one.