Nathan Eovaldi hails from the same Texas high school that produced Nolan Ryan.
Jacob Turner grew up in the same Missouri town where Mark Buehrle was born and raised.
Eovaldi and Turner might not end up equaling Ryan or Buehrle as pitchers. But if they live up to projections as dependable No. 2 or 3 starters, the Marlins will consider this weeks big trades a success.
The two young right-handers were the centerpieces in deals the Marlins made with Detroit for Anibal Sanchez and Omar Infante, and the Los Angeles Dodgers for Hanley Ramirez and Randy Choate.
We wanted to target young starting pitching, said Marlins president of baseball operations Larry Beinfest. We think it is the most coveted thing in the game, the toughest thing to acquire. Were talking about top-end, young starting pitching.
Turner, 21, was the ninth overall pick in the 2009 draft and was rated by Baseball America as the Tigers top prospect. Eovaldi, 22, was listed by the publication as the third-best prospect in the Dodgers system.
And even though both bear the prospect label, each brings a touch of big-league experience.
These are major pieces for us going forward, Beinfest said.
Forward, as in quickly.
Turner was assigned to Triple A New Orleans, where he is expected to make his first start on Saturday. Beinfest indicated he could be promoted to the Marlins before long, perhaps before the end of the season.
Eovaldi will replace Sanchez in the rotation and is scheduled to make his Marlins debut on Saturday against the Padres. It will mark the first time this season the Marlins have turned to a pitcher outside of their original five rotation members. Only the Cincinnati Reds can make that identical claim.
While Eovaldis 1-6 record and 4.15 ERA in 10 starts this season for the Dodgers isnt impressive, he has received the lowest run support among National League pitchers. Turner has gone 1-2 with a 8.28 ERA in six starts three this season and three last year with Detroit. He was in the Tigers rotation at the time of the deal.
Obviously, the ultimate goal is to be pitching in the big leagues, Turner said, who was in a car driving to Detroit on Monday when he received word of the trade.
Scouts say that, for Turner, its inevitable.
Said on American League scout: Jacob Turner, to me, Ive written, Great chance to be a solid No. 2 or No. 3 starter. I like his arm. I like his body. He has an above-average fastball, and he can spin it. The Marlins got a good one. Everyones been talking about Jacob Turner.
The scout said he also likes another prospect the Marlins received in the deal with Detroit, catcher Rob Brantly.
Hes not Yadier Molina, the scout said of Brantly. But I think he can be a No. 1 catcher in the big leagues. I think hes a better receiver than [John] Buck. He throws as good or better than Buck. But catching is a funny thing. It depends on how much patience the manager wants to show with them because the learning curve is steep.
Brantly made a nice entrance with the Marlins organization on Wednesday, going 3 for 4 with three RBI for Triple A New Orleans.
Assessing the trades in general for the Marlins, the scout said: I think they made perfect sense and they improved themselves for the future. I give them credit for changing gears.