With the Major League Baseball postseason just around the corner, I thought I would celebrate each of the franchise’s and their storied pasts by selecting an All-Time Team for every club.
The teams consist of one player per infield position (1B, 2B, SS, 3B, C), three outfielders, three starting pitchers, and two relief pitchers. Each American League squad also consists of a designated hitter.
The All-Time Teams will be in order, starting with baseball’s newest clubs (Rays and Diamondbacks) and conclude with the oldest franchise, the Atlanta Braves. Without further ado, here is part three of a 30-part series documenting each franchise’s all-time greats.
First Base: Jeff Conine 1993-97, 2003-05
Known as “Mr. Marlin”, Conine holds the rare distinction of being the only player in Miami history to be a part of both the 1997 and 2003 World Series championship teams. He was selected to the NL All-Star team in back-to-back seasons (1994-95), winning the 1995 All-Star Game MVP Award after hitting a go-ahead pinch hit home run in the eighth inning.
Second Base: Luis Castillo 1996-05
The longest tenured player in team history, Castillo became a star at second base during his Marlins career. In just his fourth full season, he led the NL in stolen bases. In his sixth full season, Castillo was named an All-Star, while again leading the NL in steals. He was again named an All-Star in 2003, winning his first Gold Glove while helping the Marlins capture the 2003 NL Wild Card, NL pennant, and World Series championships. After winning another Gold Glove in 2004, he was named an All-Star, winning a third straight Gold Glove in his final season in 2005. Castillo is the Marlins all-time leader in games (1,128), stolen bases (281), hits (1,273), runs (675), and triples (42).
Shortstop: Hanley Ramirez 2006-12
During a seven-year career in Miami, Ramirez became one of the game’s top shortstops. He won the NL Rookie of the Year in 2006, and was named an All-Star for the first time by 2008, also taking home a Silver Slugger Award. He repeated the feat in 2009, while winning the NL batting title. He was named an All-Star again in 2010 before he was traded during the 2012 season.
Third Base: Miguel Cabrera 2003-07
Cabrera made an immediate impact to start his career, hitting a walk-off home run in his first Marlins game. During his first year, he led the team to the playoffs, winning the NL Wild Card. During the postseason, he helped the Marlins win the NL pennant, followed by the World Series championship. During his final four seasons in South Florida, Cabrera was named an NL All-Star four years in a row (2004-07), winning a Silver Slugger Award in 2005 and 2006.
Catcher: Charles Johnson 1994-98, 2001-02
During his first full year in the Majors, Johnson won a Gold Glove Award. He won another Gold Glove in 1996, already on his way to becoming the top catcher in Marlins history. During the 1997 campaign, Johnson was named an NL All-Star, winning a third straight Gold Glove, while leading the Marlins to the 1997 World Series championship. After being traded during the 1998 season, he returned in 2001, being named an All-Star for the second time.
Outfield: Giancarlo Stanton 2010-17
Miami’s all-time leader in home runs (267) and RBI (672), Stanton became the top slugger in team history during his tenure. He was named an All-Star for the first time in 2012 and during a breakout 2014 campaign he was named an All-Star, winning a Silver Slugger and the NL Hank Aaron Award while leading the league in home runs. After another All-Star nod in 2015, Stanton had a monster 2017 season, being named an All-Star while winning the NL Hank Aaron Award and a Silver Slugger, leading the NL in home runs (59) and RBI (132). For his outstanding season, he was named the 2017 NL MVP.
Outfield: Cliff Floyd 1997-02
After being traded to Florida during the 1996 offseason, Floyd became a key member of the 1997 World Series champion Marlins. In his final full campaign with the club, he was named an NL All-Star in 2001.
Outfield: Gary Sheffield 1993-98
Traded to the Marlins during their 1993 expansion season, Sheffield became one of the team’s early stars, being named an All-Star during the season. He was again named an All-Star in 1996, taking home a Silver Slugger Award. The following season he helped the Marlins reach the postseason as the NL Wild Card winners, winning the NL and World Series championships.
Starting pitcher: Dontrelle Willis 2003-07
Willis made in instant impact during his debut 2003 season, being selected to the NL All-Star team and winning the Rookie of the Year Award. During the playoffs, Willis was a key member of the rotation, helping the Marlins claim the 2003 World Series title. He was again named an All-Star in 2005, leading the NL in wins (22), becong the only Marlins pitcher to win 20 games in a season. Willis was traded following the 2007 campaign.
Starting pitcher: Jose Fernandez 2013-16
Unfortunately with Fernandez, we were never able to see him at the peak of his powers after his death. Despite only playing a few short seasons, he was one of baseball’s best young stars. During his 2013 rookie season he was named an NL All-Star, taking home the Rookie of the Year Award. During his final season, he was again named an All-Star. Following his death, the Marlins announced they would retire Fernandez’s No. 16 jersey, although the club has yet to do so.
Starting pitcher: Kevin Brown 1996-97
Despite playing just two seasons in teal and black, Brown made a major impact with the Marlins. He was named an All-Star in 1996 while leading the NL in ERA. He was again named an All-Star in 1997, pitching the second no-hitter in team history against the Giants on June 10. During that season, he helped Florida win the NL Wild Card, NL, and World Series championships.
Relief pitcher: Robb Nen 1993-97
A member of the Marlins during their expansion season, Nen is now the team’s all-time leader in saves (108), saving 35 games for the 1997 World Series champions.
Relief pitcher: Antonio Alfonseca 1997-01, 2005
Second on the Marlins all-time saves list, Alfonseca was a dynamic part of the team’s bullpen. He helped Florida win the World Series in 1997, and during a career year in 2000, led the NL in saves (45), winning the NL Rolaids Relief Man Award.
Others considered: Josh Johnson, Marcell Ozuna, Mike Lowell, Dan Uggla, Livan Hernandez