Brad Penny was named the top pitching prospect in this Arizona Fall League. The league’s coaches voted for the award.
Brent Billingsley was claimed off waivers by the Montreal Expos. The Marlins purchased the contracts of pitchers Scott Comer, Gary Knotts, and Brad Penny and Claudio Vargas, and infielder Pablo Ozuna. That fills up the team’s 40-man roster.
Veteran reliever Dan Miceli was acquired from San Diego for starter Brian Meadows, who led the team in wins each the past two seasons.
Kevin Orie was traded to the Dodgers for a player to be named later. Mike Lowell emerged as the starting third baseman after a sucessful recover from cancer. That made Orie expendable and the Dodgers, fearing a free agency loss of Adrian Beltre, needed a third baseman.
Preston Wilson did not win the Rookie of the Year award, finishing a distant second to Cincinnati’s Scott Williamson. Preston got nine first-place votes, 11 seconds and 10 third for 88 points despite posting statistics better than many of the Rookies of the Year this decade. Wilson was named Rookie of the Year by the Major League Players and the Sporting News. Alex Gonzalez finished 5th.
Alex Fernandez wins the Players Choice Award as Comeback Player of the Year. Preston Wilson is named Rookie of the Year by his peers. The Major League awards will be announced next week.
In an unprecedented move, Marlins owner John Henry has offered to return 90% of profits from the new stadium back to the community. Once again showing that he owns the team for non-business reasons, Henry suggested today that the revenue from the stadium will first go to pay expenses, then payroll (which will increase to $50-$60 million). The remainder would then be split 10% to the team (for expenses and future use) and 90% invested in the community. This is the first time a team has offered to share all of the revenues with the public.
The Florida Marlins announced Monday that they have narrowed their earlier list of six possible locations for a new ballpark to two sites: Bicentennial Park in downtown Miami and downtown Ft. Lauderdale.