5/20/98 — Marlins optioned Chris Hammond and Rob Stanifer back to AAA Charlotte and called up pitchers Ryan Dempster from AA Portland and Matt Mantei from AAA.
The Marlins have called up Todd Dunwoody, Oscar Henriquez, and Ryan Jackson to fill roster spots left open from the major trade.
In an amazing turn of events, the Florida Marlins traded away all their remaining high priced players – Gary Sheffield, Bobby Bonilla, Charles Johnson, Jim Eisenreich, and Manuel Barrios to the Dodgers in return for All-Star catcher Mike Piazza and Todd Zeile. The deal will be completed once Sheffield agrees to waive his no-trade clause.
Piazza is on the last year of a two-year $15 million contract. The Dodgers have disappointed many in their performance this year. The Marlins are dumping $26 million from their payroll for $11.2 million. Piazza is a free-agent at the end of the season. This trade began as discussions regarding Jim Eisenreich. The Marlins will now try to trade Todd Zeile and Piazza, who command more value because their lower salaries and performance.
Marlins payroll is now at $24,034,000.
The Marlins have called up utility infielder John Wehner and sent down catcher/1B John Roskos.
The Marlins have placed Antonio Alfonseca on the DL with a pulled right groin muscle. Pitcher Manuel Barrios was called up to take his spot.
Despite struggling in his minor league performances, the Marlins have called up their former ace, Chris Hammond. Hammond is currently one win behind Brown for second on the Marlins’ all-time win list. The lefty has struggled with the Red Sox and Royals. When the Marlins signed him, late in the spring, they agreed to evaluate his condition on May 15. That means that he will probably make 2 starts and then the Marlins will decide if they will keep him or release him. Manuel Barrios was sent back to Charlotte.
The Marlins earned a 1-0 win over the Padres as Jesus Sanchez, Felix Heredia and Jay Powell combined to shutout the league leading Padres. Sanchez allowed only 4 hits in 6 innings striking out 7 to earn his first major league victory. The only Marlins run came when Craig Counsell grounded out to score Jim Eisnreich in the bottom of the second. It was the first shutout for the Marlins this season. 18,644 enjoyed the pitching duel.
The 8-7 loss to San Diego seemed meaningless when the Marlins learned that starter Eric Ludwick fractured his right hand (after being hit by a Wally Joyner hit). Ludwick, who showed great promise this season, will be out at least 2 months. This is Ludwick’s second stint on the DL this season. The Marlins now need to find a replacement starter. Kurt Ojala might get the nod. Manuel Barrios has been called up to take his roster spot
After a 21/2 hour rain delay, Kevin Brown finally returned to Pro Player Stadium. The Marlins jumped on Brown for 5 runs. Livan Hernandez carried team until the Antonio Alfonseca gave up back-to-back home runs in the top of the ninth. Finally, in the 11th, Edgar Renteria drove in Greg Zaun to give the Marlins a 6-5 victory. The Marlins improve to 10-18.
4/28/98 — The Rockies pounded 8 runs on 14 hits and stopped a late Marlins surge to beat the fish 8-7 at Coors Field. Following the game, the Marlins demoted Ryan Jackson to AAA and brought up veteran Donn Pall. Jim Leyland felt the bullpen was overworked and needed a 12th pitcher. Jackson had been struggling lately as a pinch hitter.
Bobby Bonilla hit his first home run of the season to give the Marlins a 4-3 victory over the Rockies in extra innings. The Rockies jumped to a 2-1 lead over Marlins starter Jesus Sanchez. Bonilla tied the game in the top of the eight, only to find the Rockies regaining the lead in the bottom of the inning. Down 3-2, with 2 outs in the top of the ninth, Mark Kotsay singled in two runs. But with two outs in the bottom of the ninth, John Vander Wal’s single tied the game. After Bonilla’s homer, Antonio Alfonseca retired the Rockies in order for his first save.
Two home runs from Charles Johnson, along with shots from Gary Sheffield and Cliff Floyd, lead the Marlins to a 12-6 victory over Arizona in front of 24,782. The 4 home runs in the game ties a team single-game home run record. Ludwick pitched 5 innings allowing 4 earned runs, was was still able to win his first game of the year when the Marlins scored 4 runs in the bottom of the fifth. Cliff Floyd drove in 4 runs and scored 2 on 2 hits. CJ drove 2, scoring 2, on 2 hits.
Matt Williams hit a 2-run home run in the top of the 11th, his second of the game, leading Arizona to a 4-3 victory over the Marlins in front of 28,710 fans at Pro Player Stadium. Following the game, the Marlins actived Eric Ludwick, who will start Sunday, and sent down reliever Oscar Henriquez.
Rookie Brian Meadows improved to 3-2 with his first career complete game in a 5-1 victory against the Marlins. Meadows allowed only one unearned run and one walk while throwing 110 pitches and striking out 5. Cliff Floyd was 3-4 and Gary Sheffield revived his batting average up to .309 by going 2-4. Bonilla, Jackson, and Renteria each drove in one run for the Marlins. The attendance for the game was 21,708. Meadows lowered his ERA to 2.48 and his 3 victories are equal to the total victories by all the other Marlins’ starters combined. 76 of his 110 pitches were strikes.
Derrek Lee continued his excellent hitting by driving in Gary Sheffield and Bobby Bonilla in the 8th to give the Marlins a 3-2 victory over the Colorado Rockies in front of 16,405 at Pro Player Stadium. Reliever turned starter Jesus Sanchez pitched 5 good innings allowing 2 earned runs. The bullpen shut out the Rockies the rest of the way. Mark Kotsay tied a team record by hitting 3 doubles.