Jason Scott Marquis
Marquis was a promising young pitcher for Atlanta when he was traded to the St. Louis Cardinals after the 2003 season. In 2004, he was one of the National League's most outstanding hurlers during the regular season, and helped the Cards reach the World Series, where they lost to the Boston Red Sox. In 2005, Marquis was again an important member of the Cardinals rotation, starting 32 games and compiling a record of 13-14 with an ERA of 4.13 with 100 strikeouts and 69 walks. He also pitched a complete-game shutout in helping St. Louis win the NL Central.
Jason is also perhaps the best-hitting pitcher in the major leagues. In 2004 he batted an impressive .292. In the 2005 campaign Marquis was even better, hitting a stunning .310 (27-87), including a home run, a triple, eight doubles, and ten RBI -- easily the highest average of any pitcher who bats regularly, and more than enough to win the 2005 Silver Slugger Award at his position.
Birth and Death Dates:
b. August 21, 1978
The hard-throwing 26 year-old -- his fastball hits the mid-90's in mph -- was so impressive at Double-A Greenville that the Atlanta Braves brought him to the majors in 2000 even though they had one of baseball's strongest pitching staffs. Considered a top minor league prospect, Marquis made his first appearance in the majors in June when John Rocker was optioned to the minors. In his 2000 big-league stint with Atlanta, Jason threw 23.1 innings, compiling a 1-0 record with 17 strikeouts and a 5.01 ERA. He was much better on the road (3.21 ERA) than at home (7.71 ERA).
Jason started his first major league game on May 12, 2001 and hurled a gem, shutting out the Los Angeles Dodgers for 6 innings on only 2 hits (the Braves lost, 1-0, in the ninth inning). On June 24, Marquis got his first major league win as a starter when he went 6 innings and allowed 4 runs in the Braves' 8-4 win over the New York Mets. Jason, who went to high school in Staten Island, had 60-70 friends and family in the stands and was so excited to start in New York that the Braves' pitching coach had to visit the mound after only two pitches to settle him down.
During the 2001 season, Jason was a solid contributor in the Braves' run towards the post-season as they finished 88-74 and won the NL East for the tenth consecutive year (a major league record). On October 6, the day after the Braves clinched the division title, Marquis started and contributed an excellent effort, allowing 3 runs in 8 innings and getting the win in a 7-3 victory over Florida. He finished the regular season with a 5-6 record in 38 appearances (16 starts) with an impressive 3.48 ERA. Jason also struck out 98 hitters while walking only 59 in 129.1 innings pitched.
Although not a starter in the playoffs, Marquis was kept on the roster because of his experience as a reliever and his athleticism. One of the fastest runners on the team, Jason expected to also be used as a pinch runner late in games. He did not play in the Divisional Series against the Houston Astros, which the Braves won, but in Game 2 of the NLCS (against the Arizona Diamondbacks) he appeared as a pinch runner in Atlanta's 8-1 victory. In Game 3, he pitched a perfect ninth inning (with one strikeout) with the Braves down 5-1; they lost the game by that score and lost the series to Arizona, 4 games to 1.
During the 2002 season, Jason compiled an 8-9 record, with a 5.04 ERA. He also had 84 strikeouts against 49 walks in 114.1 innings. Marquis' eight wins were fifth on the team behind Greg Maddux, Tom Glavine, Kevin Millwood, and Damian Moss. The Braves finished with the best record in the National League, 101-59, but were then bested in the playoffs by the San Francisco Giants, 3 games to 2, in the divisional series.
During the 2003 season, Marquis split time between Atlanta and Triple-A Richmond. During his stint in the minors, Jason started 10 games and went 5-3 with a 3.26 ERA. Before having been sent down to the minors, Jason had appeared in three games (starting two of them) and allowed nine runs in 12.1 innings (a 6.57 ERA) without a decision. Upon his return to the Braves, Marquis pitched in three games, allowing just two runs in five innings, but was sent back to Richmond on June 28. Jason was recalled to the Braves on July 29, and appeared in a total of 21 games for Atlanta with an ERA of 5.53 (he also recorded his first career save). The Braves finished the season with a record of 101-61, but lost to the Chicago Cubs in the NL playoffs.
In 2004, Marquis finished 15-7 with an ERA of 3.71; at one point in the season, he won 11 decisions in a row. To top off his season, Marquis hit a healthy .292 (21-72) with nine RBI, six doubles, six runs scored, and one stolen base. St. Louis Manager Tony LaRussa respects Jason's hitting to the extent that he had the Cardinals' No. 8 hitter sacrifice bunt to advance a runner in front of Marquis in the August 8 game against the New York Mets. The Cardinals finished the season with
a MLB-best record of 105-57. In the NL Divisional Series, the Cardinals defeated the Los Angeles Dodgers; Marquis started Game 2 and pitched 3.1 innings, giving up three runs on four hits. The Cards won the game, 8-3. In the NLCS, the Cardinals defeated the Houston Astros in 7 games, then were swept in 4 by the Boston Red Sox in the World Series. Jason made his World Series debut in the opening game -- not as a pitcher, but as a pinch-runner (he scored). He then made his first World Series pitching appearance in Game 2, when he hurled a scoreless seventh inning in relief. Jason started the final (4th) game and pitched well in a 3-0 loss. He was actually the most effective of all the St. Louis starters in the Series.
Marquis pitched with the Atlanta Braves, 2000-2003 and the St. Louis Cardinals, 2004-present.
6'1", 185 pounds
Throws right, bats left
(through 2005 season)
Games Started: 104
Complete Games: 3
Innings Pitched: 716.0
Hits Allowed: 727
Strike Outs: 456
Home Runs: 2
Batting Average: .237
Double Plays: 7
Fielding avg: .943