10:25AM: The Marlins officially announced Ladwig’s selection, and he will be the 27th man for the doubleheader.
10:20AM: The Marlins will select the contract of right-hander A.J. Ladwig from Double-A, The Miami Herald’s Craig Mish reports (Twitter link). Since Billy Hamilton was outrighted off Miami’s roster yesterday, the Marlins already had an open spot for Ladwig on the 40-man roster. Miami faces the Braves in a doubleheader today, so it possible Ladwig could serve as the Marlins’ designated 27th player.
The righty is now poised to make his MLB debut at age 29. Originally an 11th-round pick for the Tigers in the 2014 draft, Ladwig had spent his entire pro career in Detroit’s farm system until being released in May, and he then quickly signed a new minors deal with the Marlins.
Ladwig has primarily pitched as a starter, being first on the mound in 137 of his 155 games. With only a 16.57% career strikeout rate, Ladwig doesn’t miss many bats, as he has relied on excellent control (3.63% walk rate) to retire batters. He has pitched at both the Double-A and Triple-A levels since 2017, though he didn’t pitch at all in 2019 due to Tommy John surgery, and then missed the 2020 campaign when the pandemic canceled the entire minor league season.
Through it all, Ladwig has a 4.34 ERA over 783 1/3 innings during his minor league career, including a 4.43 ERA over 65 frames for the Marlins’ Double-A affiliate this year. He’ll now get his first shot at the majors, and as Ladwig told The Detroit News’ Chris McCosky this past February, that hope of reaching the Show sustained him throughout the ups and downs of his career. “I just need to keep working and get up there. I still dream about it, all the time,” Ladwig said.