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Earning Their Stripes: Week 16, Part I

Here’s what happened in the Marlins organization on Monday, Tuesday, Wednesday and Thursday.

Courtesy of Pensacola Blue Wahoos

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Marlins minor league affiliates went a combined 11-6 on Monday, Tuesday, Wednesday and Thursday:

  • Triple-A—Jacksonville 8, Durham 5; Jacksonville 7, Durham 8 (F/10); Jacksonville 4, Durham 10
  • Double-A—Biloxi 1, Pensacola 2; Biloxi 3, Pensacola 4 (F/13); Biloxi 2, Pensacola 1
  • High-A—Peoria 1, Beloit 3; Peoria 4, Beloit 2; Peoria 1, Beloit 4
  • Low-A—Lakeland 3, Jupiter 1; Lakeland 4, Jupiter 5; Lakeland 3, Jupiter 4
  • U.S. Rookie—FCL Marlins 4, FCL Astros 3 (F/7); FCL Marlins 6, FCL Astros 5 (F/7); FCL Marlins 14, FCL Cardinals 3
  • D.R. Rookie—DSL Royals Blue 3, DSL Marlins 0 (F/8); DSL Marlins 3, DSL Rays1 9

Triple-A Jacksonville (52-41)

Tuesday’s starting pitcher LHP Daniel Castano: 5.0 IP, 3 H, 1 ER, 0 BB, 1 K, 1 HR

Wednesday’s starting pitcher LHP Brandon Leibrandt: 4.0 IP, 0 H, 0 R, 1 BB, 4 K

Thursday’s starting pitcher RHP Edward Cabrera: 4.0 IP, 4 H, 3 ER, 2 BB, 6 K, 2 HR

Eddy Alvarez is stuffing the stat sheet since his return from the Olympics (4-for-10, 3 XBH, 6 RBI, 1 SB).

I’m going to be very upset if Bryson Brigman doesn’t get a taste of the big leagues by summer’s end. He has steadied himself at the plate to salvage what had been a lousy August, and his fielding never slumps.


Double-A Pensacola (47-46)

Tuesday’s starting pitcher RHP Kyle Nicolas: 5.0 IP, 3 H, 0 R, 4 BB, 7 K

Wednesday’s starting pitcher RHP Max Meyer: 6.0 IP, 6 H, 2 R (1 ER), 1 BB, 4 K

Thursday’s starting pitcher RHP Zach McCambley: 5.0 IP, 4 H, 1 ER, 2 BB, 4 K

Insane efficiency from Meyer, average 2.5 pitches per batter faced in his outing. Only 58 pitches overall! But the Blue Wahoos remain disciplined when it comes to limiting him to six innings of work no matter what.

Jacob deGrom is the only pitcher in the minors or majors who has pitched as many innings as Meyer (87) while maintaining a sub-2.00 earned run average.

Special delivery for all you swing doctors out there: see below for the side view of JJ Bleday’s walk-off double.


Every time you think he might ascend to new heights, he cools off again. It’s been nice that he has stayed completely healthy—closing in on 400 plate appearances in 2021—but he simply hasn’t shown that he’s bound for greatness.

Jerar Encarnación’s batted ball quality since coming back from the injured list has stood out to me. Expect him to squeeze onto my Marlins Top 30 prospects list following some upcoming graduations.

High-A Beloit (44-49)

Tuesday’s starting pitcher LHP Antonio Velez: 4.0 IP, 4 H, 0 R, 1 BB, 2 K

Wednesday’s starting pitcher LHP Dax Fulton: 5.0 IP, 6 H, 4 R (3 ER), 1 BB, 1 K, 1 HR

Thursday’s starting pitcher RHP M.D. Johnson: 6.0 IP, 2 H, 1 ER, 2 BB, 8 K, 1 HR

Velez was promoted to Double-A after yet another scoreless start. You could make the case that Johnson has been even more dominant, holding opponents to a .158 batting average this season (3-for-52 in August).

You would prefer to see more swing-and-miss of course, but Fulton did alright in his High-A debut. He induced a season-high 14 ground balls. His fellow “Teenage Twin Tower” Eury Pérez will take the mound on Saturday.

Kameron Misner now ranks third among Marlins minor leaguers in both extra-base hits (35) and runs batted in (55), and fourth with 24 stolen bases.

Fun with numbers: full-time reliever Brady Puckett is tied for the Marlins MiLB lead with six wins.

Low-A Jupiter (46-44)

Tuesday’s starting pitcher RHP Matt Givin: 5.2 IP, 6 H, 1 ER, 2 BB, 4 K

Wednesday’s starting pitcher RHP Hunter Perdue: 4.0 IP, 2 H, 1 ER, 2 BB, 4 K

Thursday’s starting pitcher LHP Luis Palacios: 6.0 IP, 3 H, 1 ER, 1 BB, 7 K

Perdue—Miami’s tenth-round draft pick—has joined 13th-rounder Chandler Jozwiak as the first pitchers from the organization’s 2021 draft class to get moved up to full-season ball.

Well-deserved promotion for José Salas. Down the stretch, I’ll be focused mostly on how the young switch-hitter performs against left-handed pitching (as a right-handed batter).

Tanner Allen has gradually crossed over the Mendoza Line while late-round sleeper Bennett Hostetler finds himself above .300. Both guys are demonstrating some defensive versatility (Allen at LF/RF and Hostetler at 3B/SS).

FCL Marlins (16-16)

Monday’s starting pitcher LHP Sandro Bargallo: 0.2 IP, 1 H, 3 ER, 3 BB, 0 K

Tuesday’s starting pitcher RHP Josh Simpson (rehab): 2.1 IP, 3 H, 3 ER, 0 BB, 4 K

Wednesday’s starting pitcher RHP Jesse Bergin: 4.0 IP, 2 H, 0 R, 0 BB, 4 K

As expected, top draft pick Kahlil Watson is getting his feet wet in the pros by playing shortstop and batting near the top of the lineup. Through three games, he has posted a .273/.467/.364 slash line.

Diowill Burgos just returned to official competition for the first time in August, including a home run on Wednesday. He’s figuring out first base in the complex league after previously being developed as an outfielder.

DSL Marlins (11-12)

Wednesday’s starting pitcher RHP Jhoniel Serrano: 0.2 IP, 1 H, 2 R (1 ER), 2 BB, 2 K

Thursday’s starting pitcher RHP Yoelvis Burguillos: 0.1 IP, 1 H, 3 R (2 ER), 3 BB, 0 K

Very quietly, outfielder Kevin Guerrero is putting together a promising debut season. The 17-year-old handles center field on a daily basis and has reached base safely in all but one of his 20 games played. He also leads the D.R. team with 10 stolen bases.

2021 Marlins MiLB Leaders (entering August 20)