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Max Meyer Marlins

Max Meyer Gets Marlins Promotion

The Miami Marlins made fans, and perhaps more importantly, one of their top prospects very happy on Thursday night. The team posted a video of Jacksonville Jumbo Shrimp manager Daren Brown relaying the news to Max Meyer that he’d received the call to pitch at the MLB level with the Marlins.


Meyer recently worked his way back from a ulnar nerve irritation injury before getting this well-desvered call. He will reportedly make the start for the Marlins on Saturday at home versus the Philadelphia Phillies, a team Miami’s chasing the in the Wild Card race.

Marlins (Finally) Call Up Max Meyer

The Marlins find themselves three games back of the final NL Wild Card spot after splitting a four-game series with the Pittsburgh Pirates this week. Miami (43-45) continues to deal with injuries and ineffectiveness among their pitchers outside of Sandy Alcantara and Pablo Lopez, which only added to many Marlins fans clamoring for Meyer’s call. The timing here coincides with a pivotal three-game series with the Phillies before the All-Star break.

Max Meyer finally getting the call from the Marlins puts one of baseball’s top pitching prospects on display. MLB Pipeline lists Meyer as Miami’s No. 2 prospect, behind only 19-year-old phenom Eury Perez. He’s MLB Pipeline’s No. 21 prospect overall.

With Triple-A Jacksonville, Meyer dominated competition for stretches of the season. His first six starts the season, prior to the issues surrounding his injury, saw Meyer post a 1.72 ERA over 31.1 innings pitched. He allowed just six earned runs over those six starts, registering 39 strikeouts along the way. Meyer handled Atlanta Braves slugger Ronald Acuña Jr. during that stretch.

It’s clear that the ulnar nerve irritation, which eventually landed him on the IL, affected his next two starts. Meyer adjusted his approach and mechanics to deal with the discomfort, ultimately to disappointing results. But after a month to heal and recuperate, Meyer found his form once again with Jacksonville.

During his rehab stint in Jupiter, Meyer told MLB.com: “I’ll get my shot, and I’ll be up there for a long time.”

In the four starts before this Marlins promotion, Max Meyer looked ready. He went 18.1 innings with 21 strikeouts and just four earned runs (1.96 ERA). Opponents managed a meager .119 batting average against in those starts.

Meyer’s Path to the Majors

The Marlins selected Max Meyer with the third overall pick in the 2020 MLB Draft out of the University of Minnesota. He was the first pitcher off the draft board and started his time in Miami’s system with Double-A Pensacola in 2021. (There was no minor league season in 2020.)

With the Blue Wahoos, Meyer earned the Double-A South Most Outstanding Pitcher award. He did so following a season where he registered a 2.41 ERA and 113 strikeouts over 101 innings.

In 2022, Meyer made 12 starts for Triple-A Jacksonville, posting a 3.72 ERA and 1.00 WHIP with 65 strikeouts over 58 innings. He averaged 10.1 strikeouts-per-nine-innings, registering a 28.4 percent strikeout rate along the way. He induced ground balls at a 50 percent rate this season, and kept his walk rate to just 8.3 percent.

In his 35 minor league starts, Meyer pitched to a 2.77 ERA and 1.11 WHIP, recording 199 strikeouts in those games.

Meyer sports a repertoire of three pitches, including a dominant, wipe-out slider many scouts called the single best pitch in the 2020 draft. His fastball velocity sits in the mid-to-upper-90s and has touched triple digits. This third pitch is a changeup, which the organization wanted to see him develop ahead of his promotion.

There’s been some talk of Meyer ultimately being a bullpen arm, but the Marlins maintain they view him as a rotation piece.

“I see Max as a starting pitcher,” Marlins amateur scouting director DJ Svihlik said on Wednesday. “We knew when we selected Max, there was that reliever-starter conversation. Any starter of that caliber with that kind of two-pitch combination can go into the back of a bullpen.”

Svihlik did note: “I see Max as a playoff starter.”

A spot on Miami’s 40-man roster opened recently when the Baltimore Orioles claimed reliever Louis Head off waivers. The Marlins need to add Meyer to the 40-man prior to his scheduled start on Saturday.

More on Marlins Prospects

Max Meyer

Max Meyer Throws First Bullpen for Marlins

Max Meyer toed the rubber for the first time in a Marlins uniform on Tuesday. Miami’s most recent first round pick, Meyer joined the 60-man player pool after signing his contract. As part of the pool, Meyer joined the workouts in progress at the team’s training facility in Jupiter, FL.

“The juices were flowing a little bit being the first time back on the mound and especially in the Marlins uniform was pretty special,” Meyer said of the afternoon session. “It was really fun to be out there for the first time in uniform.”

Max Meyer Adds Another High-End Arm to the System

Meyer became the latest in Miami’s line of high-end arms in the system. The 21-year-old sports a fastball that touches 99 miles-per-hour and tops out at 102 MPH. The “out” pitch, though, is a devastating slider. According to Keith Law of The Athletic, Meyer was “the most major-league ready player in the draft.”

Similar sentiments were echoed by Marlins director of amateur scouting DJ Svihlik. “That’s the most athletic college pitcher in this Draft, with the most electric stuff, and he’s just about Major League-ready.”

The Marlins took Meyer out of the University of Minnesota. As a member of the Golden Gophers, he posted a 2.13 ERA with 11.4 K/9 against 2.5 BB/9 over 148 innings in his career. Prior to the COVID-19 shut down, he pitched 27.2 innings with a 1.95 ERA.

There were some concerns with Meyer’s size. (He’s listed at 6-foot, 185 pounds, but says he’s added weight since). But he profiles with favorable comps to former CY Young winner Tim Lincecum and 3-time All-Star Roy Oswalt.

Being associated with those names, as well as the possibility of a quick MLB debut, could be seen as added pressure, but Meyer doesn’t feel that way.

“I don’t really think about that too much honestly,” Meyer admitted. “I can’t control any of that, so I’m just gonna keep doing what I have been doing, working out, throwing. I’ll be ready for whatever happens.”

JJ Bleday Reacts to Meyer’s Bullpen Session

Meyer’s first bullpen session was limited to 20 pitches, which he said were mostly fastballs with some changeups mixed in.

Fellow top-prospect JJ Bleday stood in on a few of Meyer’s pitches and came away impressed.

“The first thing I noticed right off the bat was how athletic he is,” Bleday said. “He’s got confident body movements. He pounds the zone, and he’s pretty calm, cool, collected on the mound. As a position player that’s what I like to see out of a pitcher.

“It was just fun standing in on him,” Belday said, who never faced Meyer in college, “that was cool.”

Bleday complimented Meyer’s athleticism, saying it “speaks volumes. You don’t want to be just a pitcher, you want to be the guy that makes that play when the guy drops a bunt and he’s definitely got that ability and that athleticism.”

Much of Meyer’s athleticism comes from his experience as a two-sport athlete. Meyer grew up in Minnesota and spent his whole life playing hockey. In college, Meyer would spend his winter breaks playing hockey every day.

“It’s definitely a big part of my life and I feel like I kind of bring that bulldog mentality on the mound. I was a pretty physical player in hockey, so I kinda get fired up when I’m out on the mound.”

Among the Other Prospects

In Jupiter, other top pitching prospects surround Meyer. Sixto Sanchez, Edward Cabrera, Jorge Guzman and Braxton Garrett all pop the catcher’s mitt with velocity.

“I’ve been looking at the arms and I feel like the balls just fly out of these guys’ hands. It’s unbelievable honestly,” Meyer said of the other pitchers. “There’s definitely some good competition to throw against.”

Meyer admitted that draft day was a blur and called meeting Marlins CEO Derek Jeter “unbelievable. I’m so happy to be a part of this organization led by all these top guys up here. It’s been unbelievable.”

There’s no doubt Max Meyer features as a major part of Miami’s future, be it as a starter or closer. He joins a prolific set of pitching prospects who have the Marlins’ outlook on the rise.

“It’s a fun group of guys,” Meyers said of those in Jupiter. “They got a lot of good arms here and some good bats, so it’s gonna be fun.”