Born on August 17, 1977 in Orlando, Florida, Mike Maroth (Michael Warren Maroth) played for the Detroit Tigers for his entire 5 year career. Maroth broke into the bigs on June 8, 2002 with the Detroit Tigers, and put up a 4.48 ERA in 128.2 innings pitched in 2002, his rookie year.
Most people believe that Mike Maroth's best season was 2005, when he posted a 4.74 ERA, won 14 games and struck out 115 batters.
Promising Minors Prospect
A 3rd Round pick in the 1998 draft, Maroth spent his first two years of professional baseball playing for the Single A Sarasota Red Sox in the Boston Red Sox organization. After leading Sarasota's starting pitchers with 11 wins in 1999, he was traded to the Tigers organization and worked his way up from Single A Lakeland to AAA Mud Hens by 2001. Though often inconsistent, Maroth nonetheless outperformed all other Mud Hens pitchers in that year, with a 4.65 ERA. At the time of his promotion to the Major League and the Tigers, he was also tied for second place in wins for the entire International League. Maroth was made a starter for the Tigers on June 8 of 2002.
21 Lost Games
In 2003, Maroth lost 21 games for the Tigers—the first pitcher to lose 20 or more in a season since Brian Kingman dropped 20 for the Oakland Athletics in 1980. However, many experts consider this feat to be more a function of poor run support by a Detroit Tigers team that lost an American League record 119 games rather than a reflection of Maroth's pitching ability. Indeed, he still managed to win 9 games that season, an impressive total for a pitcher on a team with one of the worst season records in Major League history.
Maroth rebounded to a decent 2004 campaign, going 11-13 with a 4.31 ERA and 108 strikeouts. 2004 also saw Maroth pitch a one-hit complete game shutout against a surging New York Yankees team that September. In light of the Tigers' continually struggling offense, Maroth's 2005 performance was similarly solid, as he managed to rack up 14 wins from 28 starts - the second best record on the team, and just one loss behind their young ace, Jeremy Bonderman.
In 2006, Maroth assumed the #3 role in the starter rotation, behind the veteran Kenny Rogers and Bonderman. Maroth credits Rogers with suggested changes to his pitching strategy, and those adjustments have helped him earn the best starter ERA of any of the Tigers' pitching staff thus far in the 2006 season.
In June 2007, Maroth was traded to the St. Louis Cardinals for a player to be named later.
- Selected by Boston Red Sox in the 3rd round of the free-agent draft (June 2, 1998 - signed July 5, 1998).
- Traded by Boston Red Sox to Detroit Tigers in exchange for Bryce Florie (July 31, 1999).