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 74 of 286. Stay tuned.
Luis Fernando Palacios is a 6’2″, 160 lb. left-hander from Cagua, Venezuela, origin also of former Florida Marlins shortstop Álex González. Born on July 1st, 2000, Palacios signed with the Miami Marlins through free agency the day after his 16th birthday.
Palacios didn’t appear in any games right away for the DSL Marlins, in the rookie-level Dominican Summer League. Instead, he made his debut in the 2017 season, putting up a 4-0 record with a 2.70 ERA, 43 strikeouts in 46 2/3 innings, and a 1.14 WHIP. Opposing hitters slashed a .215/.286/.288 line against him.
As good as Palacios was in 2017, 2018 was a whole new breed of good. Palacios led the DSL with a 0.597 WHIP in 63 2/3 innings. He struck out 62 and walked four. That’s 4. Opponents managed to get 34 hits off him, and six earned runs for a 0.85 ERA. They earned a slashline of .155/.173/.183, and were successful stealing seven-of-12 bases off him.
As good as Palacios was overall, he was even better when we omit his first four games of the season. Over his last 11 appearances, he allowed 21 hits and one run in 50 innings, striking out 50 and allowing three walks. On August 1st, in a 1-0 win over the DSL Athletics, Palacios pitched five perfect innings of relief striking out six. In his last appearance of the year, on August 25th, he earned his eighth win of the year (against zero losses) by striking out four over four perfect frames of relief.
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Most players that begin their career in the DSL don’t make it as far as the major leagues, but Palacios may be the exception. He’s now 12-0 through his minor league career, with a 1.63 ERA and a 0.82 WHIP and 105 K’s in 109 innings. He’ll still be 18-years-old for the start of the 2019 campaign. I can’t see him having to prove anything else at the rookie-level, and can only envision him commencing the season at the single-A level, with the Clinton LumberKings in the Midwest League.
With normal progression from this point on out, Palacios could possibly get a look at Spring Training in 2021, but will more likely be a late season callup then or even in 2022, despite his talent level.
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