Useless Signing of the Year: Minnesota Twins Add Veteran SP Jason Marquis

The Minnesota Twins signed veteran free agent pitcher Jason Marquis to a one-year deal worth $3 million.

This will be the first time that Marquis plays for an American League team.

Marquis, 33, pitched for the Washington Nationals and Arizona Diamondbacks last season, posting a 4.46 ERA in 23 starts before suffering a season-ending fractured right fibula after getting struck by a line drive in August.

The previous season, he made just 13 starts with Washington because he had surgery to remove bone chips in his right elbow.

But he was a model of consistency from 2004 to 2009. He made at least 32 starts in five of the six seasons, and 28 in 2008. He pitched in at least 167 innings in every season, and more than 190 in five of the six.

The only problem with Marquis?

He’s not very good. Not at all.

He hasn’t posted an ERA below 4.00 since he went 15-7, 3.71 with the 2004 Cardinals. He was so brutal for the 2006 Cardinals (14-16, 6.02 ERA, NL leader in losses, earned runs allowed, and home runs allowed) that he was left off the postseason roster. The Cardinals went on to win the World Series.

Marquis did earn an All-Star appearance with the 2009 Colorado Rockies but his numbers (15-13, 4.04 ERA) really aren’t that impressive, even for a pitcher in Colorado’s thin air.

And his career postseason statistics? Try 11 appearances, 3 starts, 0 wins, 2 losses, and a 4.56 earned run average. He allowed three runs in seven innings in Game 4 of the 2004 World Series against the Boston Red Sox, which is a decent outing. But his six hits and seven walks ruined the outing. Boston won the game, and the World Series.

Marquis has a career record of 104-98, which is slightly better than average. But his 4.55 ERA is below average, and he doesn’t have a good WHIP or good strikeout totals.

The only thing that Marquis can do well is hit. He has a career batting average of .197 with five home runs and 53 RBIs in 573 at bats.

So heading to the American League takes away his bat, which was still the worst in an average lineup, and essentially makes him useless.

The Twins ranked 12th among 14 American League teams in earned run average last season, and signing Marquis is not going to help their squad at all.

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