It's been a long time coming, but I think I finally understand why Jason Marquis's continued presence in the major leagues—eight years, now, after he was the young bright spot in an otherwise miserable World Series for the St. Louis Cardinals—unnerves me so. It's because I realize—because some part of me has always realized—that Jason Marquis will outlive us all.
At the end of May, Jason Marquis was released from the Minnesota Twins. The Twins, you understand, are a team that's gotten big innings out of P.J. Walters. But Marquis left their rotation with an ERA of 8.47, and it looked like his career might finally be over. He surfaced at the San Diego Padres' AA affiliate. It didn't matter. He came back, and on Wednesday he picked up his first win as a Padre, throwing six-plus scoreless innings despite walking four. Now he's solidly in their rotation.
In Petco. God help us.
Marquis's twice finished a season with an ERA over six, but it doesn't matter. Teams are always going to know he throws a sinker. They're going to remember his big 2004, and his inning-eating as a Cub and in Colorado. Most worryingly, they're going to remember he can hit—Marquis has 4.3 career WAR as a pitcher, and 3.5 career WAR with the bat. When he's converted into a catcher, sometime around his age-40 season... well, I warned you.