Best Player: Third baseman Brian Anderson made his Double-A debut at Jacksonville on May 31, marking a significant step in his progression.
A third-round pick out of Arkansas in 2014, Anderson hit just .235 at high Class A Jupiter in 2015. He repeated the Florida State League this year while making major strides at the plate. He hit .302/.377/.440 this season at Jupiter with 17 extra-base hits in 49 games.
At Jacksonville following his promotion, Anderson hit .243/.330/.359 in 86 games.
Assistant director of player development Brett West said he likes the mechanical adjustments Anderson has made at the plate.
“He’s still young for (Double-A), but he’s the type of third baseman you see in the majors,” West said. “He’s above-average in power, hitting, arm and range. He’s an integral part of our future.”
Best Pitcher: Righthander Luis Castillo began 2015 at low Class A Greensboro and finished 2016 at Jacksonville. His cumulative 2.26 ERA ranked 10th best in the minors.
That doesn’t mean it was all smooth sailing for the 23-year-old Castillo, who signed with the Giants in 2011 out of the Dominican Republic and joined Miami in the Casey McGehee trade after the 2014 season.
If not for an elbow injury suffered by trade pickup Colin Rea, the Marlins would have traded Castillo, who tops out at 100 mph, to the Padres in July when they acquired Andrew Cashner. The Rea injury, though, returned Castillo to Miami.
At his two stops Castillo recorded 7.0 strikeouts and 1.7 walks per nine innings. He allowed three homers in 131.2 innings.
Keep An Eye On: The Marlins promoted 25-year-old righthander Drew Steckenrider twice this season, which he finished at Triple-A New Orleans. Don’t be surprised if the 6-foot-5, 215-pound reliever gets one more call—to the majors as a September callup.
Steckenrider spent the first four years of his career stuck in the low minors. The Atlanta native, a 2012 eighth-round pick from Tennessee, finally avoided injuries this year.
In 40 appearances this season he recorded a 2.08 ERA and 0.85 WHIP to go with 71 strikeouts in 52 innings.
West said Steckenrider’s fastball and slider are good enough to serve him as a late-inning reliever in the majors.