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Top 55 All-Time Greatest Blue Jays: #48 Shaun Marcum


Shaun Michal Marcum | SP | 2005 - 2010

Shaun Marcum was born December 14, 1981 in Kansas City, Missouri. The Jays drafted him in the 3rd round of the 2003 amateur draft out of Missouri State University.

He moved up our minor league system quickly. By 2005 he made it to Triple-A and was a September call up, getting into 5 games in relief, without giving up an earned run in 8 innings.

In 2006 Shaun started the season in Syracuse. He had a couple of early season stints with the Jays, then was called up to the majors for good in early July. By the middle of the month he given Ty Taubenheim's spot in the starting rotation and held it for the rest of the year. He finished 3-4, with a 5.06 ERA, in 21 games, 14 starts. In 78.1 innings he gave up 87 hits, 38 walks with 65 strikeouts.

At the start of the 2007 season, Marcum was back in the bullpen (the Jays were trying Tomo Ohka, Gustavo Chacin and Josh Tower in the back of the rotation), but by mid-May he was back in the rotation. He went 12-6, with a 4.13 ERA, in 38 games, 25 starts. In 159 innings he gave up 149 hits, 49 walks with 122 strikeouts. The bad number was the 27 home runs.

Shawn finally started a season in the rotation, in 2008. He did well until about the end of June, when he missed about a month with "strained ligaments". Shaun had a visit to Dr. Andrews who said it wasn't serious. On the season he firmly established himself as a good starter with a 9-7 record and a 3.39 ERA in 25 starts.

But, of course there was bad news, Shawn left his September 18th start with elbow pain and ended up having Tommy John surgery costing him his 2009 season.  A lot of us will remember Shaun talking to the press after he heard that he needed surgery. Shaun was very sad.  I did feel that Cito Gaston could have treated him a little more gently when he came back from the injury in June, but then that likely didn't have anything to do with the injury at the end of the year.

Marcum made a few start in the minors at the end of the 2009 season then came into 2010 as the leader of a young pitching staff, since Roy Halladay had been traded in the off-season. It turned out to be his best season with Jays. He set career highs in wins (13), starts (31), innings (200.2) and strikeouts (165).  Fangraphs credited him with a 3.6 WAR.

After the season, on December 6th Alex Anthopoulos traded Marcum to the Brewers for Brett Lawrie. At the moment it seems to be one of those trades that works out for both teams. Marcum and the Brewers made it to the playoffs, but I don't think there are many Blue Jay fans that aren't happy to have Lawrie. Unfortunately Marcum didn't have a very good time of it in the playoffs. He went 0-3 in 3 starts with a 14.90 ERA. It looked like he had a tired arm.

Marcum will always be one of my favorite pitchers, you have to like a guy that can be successful without a mid-90's fastball. Shaun throws high 80's, but has a great change up and some breaking stuff. He's a fly ball pitcher so he gives up his share of home runs but he battles. He gets by on guts and guile.

Shaun is married and has two sons, Landon and Ryne (named after Ryne Sandberg). Woodman has a good profile of Shaun here.

Shaun's place among Blue Jay pitching leaders:

ERA (>500 innings): 9th, 3.85

Wins: 17th, 37

Win-Loss %: 5th, .597

Hits per 9 innings: 7th, 8.346

Walks per 9: 8th, 2.797

Strikeouts per 9: 7th, 7.282

Innings: 19th, 592

Strikeouts: 17th, 479

Games started: 14th, 95