Throughout the 2018/2019 offseason, Marlin Maniac will devote one article each for every player who appeared in the Miami Marlins system for the 2018 season. Every. Single. Player. This is Part 28…of 286. Stay tuned.
Cam Lachlan Baird is a 6’3″, 195 lb. pitcher from Raton, New Mexico. Born on May 15th, 1996, the right-hander was picked in the 20th round of the 2018 draft out of Texas State University with the 597th choice off the board.
Baird had started his collegiate career in the Junior College arena with Trinidad State JC in 2015 and 2016. For his final two seasons, he went 3-11 for the Bobcats at Texas State, with a 6.70 ERA over 84 2/3 innings.
If Baird makes it to the majors eventually, he’ll be the sixth member of the “597 club” to get that far. The most prolific current member of the club to this point is Jeff Schwarz (1982, Chicago Cubs, 0.6 career WAR). He was brief in his Twitter reaction to his selection:
After signing with the Miami Marlins for a $1,000 bonus, Baird reported to the GCL Marlins, in the rookie-level, Florida based Gulf Coast League on June 18th. He got shelled in his debut, three days later, getting lit up for three earned runs in two innings by walking two and allowing four hits in a 6-5 loss to the GCL Astros.
Over his next four appearances, comprising 4 1/3 innings, Baird kept opponents scoreless on three hits while striking out five. That was followed on July 18th by another embarrassing outing, during which he gave up four runs in just 2/3 of an inning in an 11-5 win over the GCL Nationals.
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For the rest of the short season, Baird finished up pretty good. Over his final seven appearances, he struck out 16 in 11 innings, allowing three walks, seven hits and only one earned run. Opposing hitters slashed .232/.346/.246 against him overall. He was especially good at home, where he held them to a line of .147/.237/.176 in 38 plate appearances. His best outing of the season was on August 14th, in a 7-5 loss to the GCL Cardinals. Baird pitched two scoreless near-perfect innings, striking out five (and hitting one batter).
Baird has never been highly touted, and it’s not hard to see why after his 8.40 ERA as a senior with Texas State. Despite that, he’s done pretty well in his first professional look. He should start next season with the Batavia Muckdogs, in the short-season-A New York-Penn League. Provided he advances through the system more-or-less normally, he would have a chance at making the Miami Marlins out of Spring Training in 2023.
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