Best Marlins Player - 2013
Let's face it: There's not much to get excited about from the Miami Marlins this year. The good news from the Marlins penchant for trading their best players away for no-names is that they also got to replace the train wreck known as Heath Bell at closer. With Bell shipped off to Arizona, the closer's role opened up for 26-year-old Steve Cishek, who came into the role with guns blazing. Drafted by the Marlins in 2007, Cishek was a skinny kid whose fastball topped off at just 82 mph. But thanks to a growth spurt and some seasoning through college, Cishek now breaks the radar gun at 95 mph with a nasty fastball that gives opposing hitters the hives. Stepping in as the closer late in 2012, Cishek proved that Marlins fans need not worry about at least one position. The six-foot-six gangly heat thrower converted 13 of 14 save opportunities over the season's final three months, allowing opposing batters to hit a paltry .183 average with runners in scoring position during that time. Cishek was also the lone bright spot for the monumentally disappointing Team USA during this year's World Baseball Classic. So playing with a losing team and having success should be nothing new to him. The Marlins have plenty of problems going forward, but the closer ain't one. That is, of course, until they decide to trade Cishek for another crop of no-names.