2003 All Over Again?

Thursday, July 9, 2009

We keep hearing about the Marlins wanting to acquire relief pitching help. In fact we signed three guys off waivers in the last week alone, and I wouldn't be surprised if BJ Ryan became a fourth. This reminded me of the 2003 season, when we desperately needed help and made the trade for Ugueth Urbina. That got me thinking, and I realized there are a lot of similarities between the 2003 team and this current one. So I made a handy table to illustrate that. If you have anything to add, feel free to leave a comment.

Position Player Callup
Miguel Cabrera: Homered in his first game and eventually become a solid #3 hitter for the playoffs.
Chris Coghlan: Had his first home run ball held hostage and is proving himself a very capable leadoff hitter.

Pitching Callup
Dontrelle Willis: A funky pitching motion and engaging personality captured fans' love, drawing comparisons to Fernando Valenzuela and Vida Blue.
Sean West: Good mechanics and not much personality shown yet has had us compare him to Randy Johnson (Who he beat!).

Josh Beckett: Texan who idolized Roger Clemens came into his own and had a dominant playoffs, launching the rest of his career.
Josh Johnson: Oklahoman Cy Young candidate who may carry entire team to playoffs, hopefully won't end up going north for the rest of his career.

Fledgling Closer
Braden Looper: Recorded 28 saves, but had the knock for blowing the wrong ones. Eventually lost his job and never became a good closer.
Matt Lindstrom: On pace for 28 saves, but has lost his job to a shoulder injury. Most fans are hoping he doesn't remain a closer.

New Closer
Ugueth Urbina: Crazy personality fit for a closer, and got the job done (except for WS Game 4), but now sits in a Venezuelan jail.
He says he can still pitch, can we get him released and pitching for us with an ankle bracelet or something?

Leadoff Hitter
Juan Pierre was so tiny and happy you just had to love him. He hit over .300, stole over 60 bases,and was the perfect table setter for the lineup.
Emilio Bonifacio: Okay, this one doesn't work out. Let's move on.

Reserve Catcher Who Looks Like A Caveman

Jeff Conine
Came back via a wiaver-wire trade to play left field and came up with some big hits to help clinch the Wild Card, threw out JT Snow at the plate to end the NLDS.

He's a coach, he's a consultant, he's a TV analyst, Jeff, why don’t you get in a game or two at left field just for fun? (you can surely still OPS better than Hermida).


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