Posts Tagged ‘Florida Marlins’

Average Distance From Majors To Affiliates: National League East

Continuing on with the series we started on Monday, here are the distances between the teams in the National League East and their affiliates.

Atlanta Braves (average: 279 miles)
Atlanta to…
…Gwinnett Braves (AAA): 32 miles
…Mississippi Braves (AA): 378 miles
…Myrtle Beach Pelicans (A): 364 miles
…Rome Braves (A): 70 miles
…Danville Braves (R): 381 miles
…GCL Braves (R): 450 miles

Washington Nationals (average: 333 miles)
Washington to…
…Syracuse Chiefs (AAA): 373 miles
…Harrisburg Senators (AA): 121 miles
…Potomac Nationals (A): 22 miles
…Hagerstown Suns (A): 72 miles
…Vermont Lake Monsters (A): 519 miles
…Gulf Coast Nationals (R): 888

Philadelphia Phillies (average: 421 miles)
Philadelphia…
…Lehigh Valley Iron Pigs (AAA): 62 miles
…Reading Phillies (AA): 64 miles
…Clearwater Threshers (A): 1,077 miles
…Lakewood BlueClaws (A): 65 miles
…Williamsport Crosscutters (A): 178 miles
…GCL Phillies (R): 1,077 miles

Florida Marlins (average: 525 miles)
Miami to…
…New Orleans Zephyrs (AAA): 868 miles
…Jacksonville Suns (AA): 345 miles
…Jupiter Hammerheads (A): 88 miles
…Greensboro Grasshoppers (A): 794 miles
…Jamestown Jammers (A): 966 miles
…GCL Marlins (R): 88 miles

New York Mets (average: 543 miles)
New York…
…Buffalo Bisons (AAA): 409 miles
…Binghamton Mets (AA): 190 miles
…Saint Lucie Mets (A): 1,182 miles
…Savannah Sand Gnats (A): 828 miles
…Brooklyn Cyclones (A): 15 miles
…Kingsport Mets (R): 631 miles

Now Pitching For The Florida Marlins…

Last night at this time, Chris Volstad was a member of the Carolina Mudcats.  A tall (6’7″), slim (190 lbs.) righthander, he was 4-4 with a 3.36 ERA in 91 innings.

Just hours ago, Volstad arrived in Denver as the newest member of the Florida Marlins.  He was put into the game against the Rockies to start the fifth inning with the Fish trailing 4-3; when he left two innings later, they led 5-4 en route to a 10-5 win, the first of Volstad’s major league career.

Volstad was Florida’s first round pick (16th overall) in the 2005 draft and was listed by Baseball America as the team’s top prospect.  He will remain in the major leagues and is expected to join the starting rotation, with his first outing likely to come against the Dodgers on Friday.

Now Pitching For The Florida Marlins…

This is strange territory for me.

Usually, “Now Pitching/Batting For” posts are reserved for prospects on Baseball America’s Top 100 list, those players that anyone who follows baseball is just itching to see in a major league uniform.  The Jay Bruces, Clayton Kershaws, and Cameron Maybins of the world, if you will.

I thought Eulogio De La Cruz was on the Top 100.  I really did.  Turns out, though, that I was tricked into thinking that by my compatriot Extra P, who includes him on the Z-Meter every week and is delighted by his name as much as the numbers he puts up.*

*I am a huge fan of unusual names – two of my nieces are named Shakeira and Taliyah – but as we all know, people can go too far.  The other night at the mall, a little girl started running away from her mother, and what do I hear?  “Pandora, stop!”  That just strikes me as cruel, although I did suggest that if my wife and I ever have twins, I’m going to name them Pandora and Box before she’s lucid enough to stop me.

Technically speaking, De La Cruz shouldn’t be mentioned in this type of post (pay no attention to the Wladimir Balentien behind the curtain).  He’s not one of the Top 100, he’s already appeared in the major leagues this season (for a whopping three innings), he’s 24-years-old.  But when you get down to it, he belongs in a NPF post for one reason: Extra P’s “irrational sense of whimsy”, which is really what this blog is all about.  We do it to entertain ourselves, and if that means hyping a guy just because his name is Eulogio, then we hype a guy just because his name is Eulogio.  That’s just how we roll.  Recognize.

Anyway, Eulogio (or “Frankie”, as the MiLB.com story on his callup referred to him) will be doing his second tour with the Marlins this season.  It can’t go any worse than the first, when he was brought up, roughed up the Giants, and promptly shuttled back to the Bus Leagues.  The story suggests that he might be around a bit longer this time, largely because he provides a valuable option for long-relief and has suddenly figured out how to control his curveball, which was the Matt Tuiasosopopo of his repertoire not too long ago.  Eulogio now has four pitches – fastball, changeup, slider, curve – that he can throw for strikes.

Wanted: The Next Jamie Moyer, Tom Glavine, Pedro Martinez…

Planning on heading out to the ballpark to watch Florida Marlins minor leaguers in action this season?  Get ready to see a lot of changeups, if Larry Beinfest has his way:

As an organization, the Marlins are preaching the need for their own pitchers to learn how to throw a changeup.

Larry Beinfest, the team’s president of baseball operations, instructed the Minor League pitching staffs to teach the changeup.

“I believe he told everybody in our Minor Leagues that they’ve got to throw changeups. Teach the changeup,” Gonzalez said. “It’s just that hard of a pitch to pick up as a hitter.”

The organizational philosophy earned mention on the heels of Johan Santana’s Opening Day performance against Florida, when he allowed two runs on three hits while striking out eight batters in seven innings.  Last August, a survey of American League managers by Baseball America listed Santana’s changeup as the best in the league.

It’s hard not to like this philosophy.  Just off the top of my head, I can think of a few young Marlins who experienced arm troubles last year, a curse that could be helped by the low stress level involved in throwing the pitch.

Of course, they are far from the first organizaton to try this – I wonder how it’s worked out in the past?