Tag Archives: jorge cantu

One More Time, “Hip, Hip, Jorge”!!!!!

One More Time, “Hip, Hip, Jorge”!!!!!

After nearly three seasons with the Florida Marlins, Jorge Cantu has been dealt to the Texas Rangers.  Cantu would be a free agent at the conclusion of the 2010 baseball season and he didn’t appear to be in the Marlins’ plans for 2011.

I am happy to see Jorge go to a contender as he should be able to fit in at either 1st base, 3rd base, or DH for the division leading Rangers.

Thank you for your great energy and for always giving it your all on the field.  Best of luck to you!!!

“Hip, Hip, Jorge”!!!!!

“Hip, Hip, Jorge”!!!!!

“Hip, Hip, Jorge”!!!!!

The Florida Marlins Prepare To Battle With A 3-Headed Giant From San Francisco!!!

The Florida Marlins Prepare To Battle With A 3-Headed Giant From San Francisco!!!

Starting with tonight’s game, the Giants are in town for a 3-game series with the Marlins.  Over the last 15 years, that meant that the mighty Barry Bonds was going to be here, but now it is the talented Giants’ pitching rotation that is getting the attention.

First up is Tim Lincecum, the reigning 2-time Cy Young award-winning pitcher.  On the year, he is 4-0 and he brings in a very low 1.27 ERA.  In 35 innings of work in 2010, Lincecum has struck out 43 batters and the league is hitting just .175 against him.  After Lincecum, comes a rejuvenated Barry Zito, who is also off to a 4-0 start on the season.  He too sports a low ERA of just 1.53.  Almost unhittable, batters are hitting just .167 against Zito so far this season.  Lastly, there is Matt Cain.  The Giants #2 guy for the last few years, Cain is 1-1 on the season and sports a 2.84 ERA.  A master of control, Cain has struck out 24 batters this year while walking just 7.

The Marlins will certainly have their hands full versus the Giants during this 3-game stint.  But, their bats are heating up.  Dan Uggla and Jorge Cantu are driving in runs like mad, and Hanley Ramirez has three home runs and 7 RBI in his last two games.  If Cody Ross, Chris Coghlan, or Gaby Sanchez can get hot, the Marlins should be able to fight off the Giants’ incredible starting pitching. 

Personally I see more opportunities for the team when they reach the bullpen in the later innings.  That’s if they get to face the bullpen…

Good luck team.  And, GO FISH!!!

Hip, Hip, Jorge!! Hip, Hip, Jorge!! Hip, Hip, Jorge!!!

Not wanting to be a ‘streak-buster’, I waited until after Jorge Cantu of the Florida Marlins set a new major league record before I wrote about it.

Last night, in Florida’s 10-2 win over the Reds, Cantu set a major league record by collecting at least 1 hit and 1 RBI in the first 10 games of the season.  The previous record of 9 games was set more than 90 years ago.

Coming into the game tied with a  9-game streak with George Kelly(set in 1921), Cantu collected his ‘big hit’ in the bottom of the fifth inning.  A long double that scored Hanley Ramirez, and the rest is now history!! 

Jorge Cantu may never be enshrined at the Hall of Fame, but it is very possible that the ball, bat or uniform that he wore during this at-bat will be!!

Congratulations Jorge.  3 cheers!!!

Hip, Hip, Jorge!!  Hip, Hip, Jorge!!  Hip, Hip, Jorge!!!

Florida Marlins 2010 Opening Night!!!

Florida Marlins 2010 Opening Night!!!

Yes, I was there!!!  This marks the first time in ’30-YOC’ history that I have attended an ‘Opening’ event for major league baseball.  My buddy scored 4 tickets Thursday night, and I jumped when one of them was offered my way.

And while I was very eager to see the 2010 Marlins, I was more excited to see the pre-game festivities as the team had some fun stuff planned.

For the most part, my pictures turned out horribly.  For this post, I will use images I found on Yahoo Sports.  I will download and crop the shots I took and will share them with you in a few days.

Leading off the night was Creed lead singer Scott Stapp.  He wrote and recorded the team’s new theme song.  But for this game, he sang ‘The Star Spangled Banner’.

Then I saw Chris Coghlan get his Rookie of the Year plaque.

From there, Hanley Ramirez picked up his Silver Slugger award…..

… and some major bling commemorating his .342 batting average from 2009.  They gave out 5,000 replicas of these in a BINGO game.  I was not one of the fans to win…

Lastly, my primary reason for wanting to be there – Hall of Famer, Mr. Andre Dawson, was throwing out the ceremonial first pitch!!!

And even though the team was defeated by the Dodgers, I had a great time at the game.  In a stadium packed with more than 35,000 fans, I got quite a bit of attention wearing my Cubs’ replica Dawson shirt.  Any other game, and I would have worn Teal & Black like everyone else.  But for me, this night was about ‘The Hawk’!!!

I’ll do my best to get more pictures loaded up.  I know they’re pretty bad, but I’ll post them anyway.

Oh, and wait until you see what I bought at the Marlins’ Charity Fundraisers booth… stay tuned.

Assessing The 2010 Florida Marlins

Assessing The 2010 Florida Marlins

As we sit here, less than 72 hours away from Opening Day, a familiar feeling rushes through me.  The feeling of nervous anxiousness about the 2010 baseball season is overwhelming.  You see, right now each team is tied at the top spot.  With no losses, we are all undefeated.

And I cannot stop thinking about what the Florida Marlins are capable of.

Playing in a league that now has Roy Halladay, Jason Bay, and some of the highest regarded young talent in the sport will not be easy for the Marlins.  For the main roster, the Marlins stood pat with the team that kept them in playoff contention for the better part of 150 games last year.

Offensively the team will be dynamic.  Scoring in bunches will secure wins for the club and we(all of the Marlins’ fans – all 6 of us) are eager to see how Chris Coghlan and Hanley Ramirez follow-up their incredible campaigns from 2009.  And with a new first baseman, in Gaby Sanchez, the team will have a different first baseman on Opening Day for the 4th year in a row.  We know that Dan Uggla, Cody Ross, and Jorge Cantu will provide power at the plate and drive in runs as needed.  And then there is my buddy Cameron Maybin.  Coming off of shoulder surgery during the off-season, Maybin has not looked great this Spring, but he has not been terrible either.  It’s still a mystery as to where he will bat in the line-up, but 2010 is going to be his chance to prove he deserves to play every day.

The Marlins’ pitching staff remained relatively in tact – with no key additions or subtractions.  Josh Johnson is the team’s ace, while Ricky Nolasco looks to put a strangle-hold on the second spot in the rotation.  Of the remaining starters, all have shown signs of solid pitching while also showing that they need to improve too.  No matter how they rank, Chris Volstad, Anibal Sanchez, Nate Robertson, and Andrew Miller all need work.  As for the bullpen, it is full of talented guys, but nobody has a clear-cut role.  Leo Nunez will start the season as the closer, but he allows too many hits to remain in that spot all year-long.  The Marlins need a closer that comes in and puts teams away – not one that allows base runners.  Can one of the guys in the pen fill that spot?  We shall see…

The 2010 season promises to be exciting for the team.  Overall, I predict that they will hover around the .500 line for the better part of the season.  Ultimately, I see them winning 75-80 games and unfortunately missing the playoffs again.  Last year they finished in 2nd place in the division, but I think that the Braves have the talent to overtake them if they can stay healthy.  And nobody in the NL East is going to catch the stacked Philadelphia Phillies!!!

2010 promises to be a season of come from behind wins and blown saves.  Hopefully there are more of the first one…  I cannot wait!!!

GO FISH!!!!

‘On The Road With psugator02’ – March 18, 2010

‘On The Road With psugator02’ – March 18, 2010

Atlanta Braves at St. Louis Cardinals
Roger Dean Stadium
2-4:30 p.m.

Arrived in the top of the 4th and didn’t feel like paying for a ticket. So I wandered over to the Cardinals’ backfields hoping to get Red Schoendienst. Never did see Red but I was able to snag graphs from a few Marlins’ minors, particularly pitchers Todd Doolittle (1/1 card) and Edgar Olmos (7/7 cards). I told Olmos he looked a lot different from his card and he replied, “It’s all that good Mexican food I’m eating.”

Hoped to get a few other minors, but they wouldn’t sign during the game. Walked back to the Cardinals’ parking lot and thought I might wait around to see if any of the players stopped. But once I looked at the horde of people I realized that I was probably wasting my time. That’s when I walked over to the Braves’ bus, which was parked near the Marlins’ clubhouse.

Tim Hudson exited the clubhouse for his car about 15 minutes after I had arrived. He did 1/1 (2008 Ginter). I knew he played baseball at Auburn so I thought I’d tell him about my Gators’ losing this afternoon to BYU. Hudson said he had heard the score but wasn’t a big college basketball fan. A few minutes later Chipper Jones walked out and I was able to get him to do a 1997 Beckett Baseball Card Monthly magazine. He signed it squarely in the middle of the magazine in big, bold, blue Sharpie. I tried to make small talk with him but he didn’t acknowledge me. You’ll find this hard to believe but the last time I got Chipper was 1990, the year he was drafted. I remember that he signed two of his Topps rookie cards.

I had a dinner date with the girlfriend so I couldn’t stay for the Marlins-Mets night game. But I was able to snag 2/2 (8x10s) from Sean West as he was arriving for the game. I also got another graph from Jorge Cantu, who did a 2009 Ginter. Cantu has a habit of having something in one hand, forcing the grapher to hold the card as he signs. Invariably, when Cantu does this the graph comes out horribly.

All in all, decent quality for only 2.5 hours of graphing.

If you’d like to talk to Mark, he can be reached at psugator02@yahoo.com.

2009 Marlins Review – Can’t Wait To See What 2010 Has In Store…

I’m always looking forward to the future.  And the 2010 baseball season is no different.

It will be a pivotal year for the Marlins as they need to strengthen their fan base and sell season tickets for the new stadium that will open in 2012. 

The offense is solid.  The defense is serviceable.  And the team’s pitching needs a ton of help…

And with a roster full of fun and talented guys, it’s a certainty that the team will not look identical to the one that was on the field in 2009.  Some guys will leave.  Some guys will be dealt.  And new faces will join us.

No matter what happens, I cannot wait!!! 

GO FISH!!!!

marlins

2009 Marlins Review – We’ll Get ‘Em Next Year Cameron…

 Ah, ‘The Maybin-Meter’.  Those were great days!!!

Cameron Maybin was going to be ‘my guy’.  I have never been a prospector, and I know very little about team’s farm systems.  But there is something about this kid and his baseball skills that I find enjoyable to watch.  He has quite a bit of raw talent, and needs some more formal instruction, but he has the ability to become one of the more well-rounded center fielders in the sport.

Maybin debuted with the team in September of 2008 and took the team and league by storm for a few weeks.  After winning a starting job with the big league club he started 2009 on a bad note, striking out often and playing poor defense, and eventually was sent to the minors to work on his game.  Well, the time he put in did it’s job and Maybin again came back to the big league club in September of 2009.

After being called up, he appeared in 27 games.  And in those contests, he hit .302 while going 26-for-86.  He also scored 18 runs, hit 3 round-trippers, and most impressively cut down on his strikeouts. 

Congratulations on a great finish to the 2009 season Cameron!!!  The starting job in 2010 is yours to lose – Go Get ‘Em!!!!

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2009 Marlins Review – Cody Ross Is My Hero!!!

If you’re a consistent reader of this blog, you know that Cody Ross is one of my favorite Marlins.

The main reason for this is that you can see the joy in Ross and his personality each and every time he steps onto the field.  I find this to be rare in today’s game and very refreshing.  I have never heard a negative word uttered about him and after meeting him a few months ago at a local appearance, I too have only positive things to say.

But it’s more than that that makes him a favorite.  Cody Ross has a knack for delivering the knock-out blow.  His ability to crush game-winning home runs, make run-saving catches, and break up no-hitters is what has done it for me.

Thank you for an unforgettable year Cody!!  I’m ready to watch you play in 2010!!! 

cody ross

2009 Marlins Review – Dan Uggla Loves The Long Ball

Dan Uggla continued to blast his way into the record books during the 2009 baseball season.

And while 2009 was not his most well-rounded offensive season, Uggla continued to deliver the long ball at a record pace!!

Uggla set two records during the 2009 season:

  1. Dan Uggla is the first slugger for the Florida Marlins to belt 30 or more home runs in three straight seasons.  His 31, 32, ans 31 home run seasons are a team record.
  2. Dan Uggla is the first second baseman in MAJOR LEAGUE HISTORY to hit 25 or more runs in the first four years of his career. 

When you think about the great power hitter that the Marlins have had on their team and then of all of the amazingly talented second basemen to ever play the game, Dan Uggla is right there!!!

And it’s been amazing to watch!!!  Congratulations Dan!!!

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