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Brad Hand

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Bradley Richard Hand

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Brad Hand was charged with a loss in spite of pitching extremely well in his major league debut for the Florida Marlins on June 7, 2011. Facing the Atlanta Braves, he gave up only one hit and one walk over six innings, while striking out six, but the only hit was a solo home run by Alex Gonzalez and his teammates failed to score for him, saddling him with the 1-0 loss. The last time a pitcher had lost his debut in spite of allowing only one hit of six or more innings was on May 19, 1971, when Mike Thompson of the Washington Senators lost to the Baltimore Orioles in spite of allowing only one hit in seven innings.

Hand was chosen by the Marlins in the second round of the 2008 amateur draft out of high school and signed by scout Bob Oldis. Hand had some consistently solid ERAs in the minors before reaching the big leagues. He went 3-2, 2.64 in 12 games between the GCL Marlins and Jamestown Jammers in 2008, then, in his only poor year, was 7-13, 4.86 after making the jump to the Greensboro Grasshoppers of the South Atlantic League in 2009, when he was one of the youngest players in the circuit. He spend 2010 between the Jupiter Hammerheads of the Florida State League, where he was 8-8, 3.33 in 26 starts, and the Jacksonville Suns of the Southern League, where he won his only start by giving up 2 runs over 6 innings. He continued to pitch well at Jacksonville early in 2011, earning the call to the Marlins in early June: in 11 starts, he was 7-1, 3.53. He has also posted good strikeout numbers in the minors, with 122 Ks in 2009 and 138 in 2010, slightly below one per inning pitched. Hand ended up going 1-8, 4.20 in 12 starts, his only win coming on July 7th when he pitched 7 scoreless innings to beat the Houston Astros, 5-0.

Hand spent the bulk of the 2012 and 2013 seasons in the minors, making only a few appearances in the majors during the period. In 2012, he went 11-7, 4.00 in 27 starts for the New Orleans Zephyrs and was charged with a 7-4 loss to the Washington Nationals in his only big league appearance, on August 3rd. The following year, he was limited to 15 starts in New Orleans, going 3-5, 3.42, and also made a couple of rehabilitation starts with the GCL Marlins. At the major league level, he was the starter in 2 of his 7 appearances, but his lone win came in a relief outing. he was 1-1, 3.05 for the now Miami Marlins, allowing only 13 hits in 20 2/3 innings. He made the Marlins' staff out of spring training in 2014 and was mainly used as a reliever in the early going. However, he had a 6.23 ERA on May 23rd when he was sent down to the minors. He did record his first career save on April 4th, pitching 3 scoreless and hitless innings in completing an 8-2 win over the San Diego Padres. The Marlins decided at that point to return him to a starting role, and he made a couple of starts with Jupiter and four with New Orleans before returning to Miami as a starter in early July. On July 20th, he won for the first time in the role since 2011 when he pitched 7 innings, allowing only 2 runs, to defeat the San Francisco Giants and the red-hit Tim Lincecum, 3-2.

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