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For Jeff Allison and the Marlins, the ballgame is over

    I remember the first time I saw Jeff Allison. In fact, it was one of the only times. It was shortly after the Marlins took the highly touted 18-year-old pitcher from Peabody, Mass., in the first round of the 2003 draft. When the Marlins traveled to Boston to face the Red Sox at Fenway Park later that same month, he was invited to sit with owner Jeffrey Loria in a box near the dugout. During batting practice, he stood on the grass in foul territory, talking to reporters and shaking hands with Marlins players.

   Jeffallison Turns out that was as close as Allison ever got to the big leagues.

    Allison's eventual downfall (and near death experience) from illegal drug use has been well documented, and there is no need to again go into those details that are already so familiar to many. But drugs are what decimated Allison as a baseball player, robbing him of his athletic talents and reducing him to a career minor-leaguer. Though he has always remained the property of the Marlins system, he didn't play at all in 2004, 2006 and 2007 due to his bouts with substance abuse. When he finally beat his addiction and returned to the diamond, he wasn't the same pitcher. His fastball was gone.

    He made it to Double A, but no higher. Last season, he went 3-4 with a 6.26 ERA for Jacksonville, after which he became a 6-year minor league free agent. The Marlins have no intention of hanging on to him any longer. His agent, Jeff Berry, also happens to represent Mark Buehrle, and when I asked him at Buehrle's press conference on Friday about what Allison's plans might be, he said he was unsure. There is a chance Allison could simply call it quits and bow out quietly. Only he knows.

    Every baseball person I've spoken with recently shakes his head sadly and says Allison has lost any chance of ever reaching the majors. But, in return, they all say he's reclaimed the most important gift of all: his life.

Comments

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cuban pete

Loria's first #1 draft choice set a precedent for the rest of his crappy first rounders and thats why they've got one of the worst minor league systems today.

Fanfish

Don't be a hater, Cuban Pete. First please try to do your homewok before you post.
Other Marlins first round picks include Charles Johnson, Josh Beckett, Adrian Gonzalez and Chris Coghlan. Not really crappy players, wouldn't you agree? The farm system is depleted because most of the good players are in the big leagues, such as Lomo, Gaby,and Stanton.

cuban pete

Fanfish...all the players u mentioned as 1st round picks ,were drafted before Loria was given team,except Cogz..u obviously are a know nothing Loria boot licker...wouldnt u agree,,please do ur homework before u post,u idiot

El Loco

Oye Cuban Pete metete el dedo

arturo

eL Loco intelligent response you must be a dominican

Fed Up With Entitled Losers

Coghlan was a second-round pick, not a first-round pick, and after his rookie year, he has sucked major donkey genitalia. As for Allison, eh, to hell with him.

Sanford

How sad it is for such a young player. Many have been robbed of drugs and many more are still functional as players and that too can be a career killer.

Grady

WTF??? is that U ,Fred ? Say hey to Lamont...

Aunt Esther

Sanford too bad playas been robbed of drugs,whadu say...Braun got caught, just like Gaby at UM....dey be guilty

Two Ton Tiny

Marlins Fire the Manatee's...no more Tons of Fun at the Ballpark...Obese fans across America cite discrimination..

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