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Wednesday, May 10, 2023

Mike Mordecai did his job when called upon; Saw bigs over 12 seasons, Bartman game

Mike Mordecai 1990 Durham Bulls card, Mordecai up close holding a bat

Mike Mordecai went to the World Series twice with the Braves, in 1995 and 1996. But, given the chance to continue with the organization two seasons later, Mordecai passed, The Montreal Gazette wrote.

Mordecai just wanted a chance to play regularly, something he soon got a chance to do with the Expos, The Gazette wrote.

"I've never regretted asking to be set free," Mordecai told The Gazette into his second season with the club. "All I wanted was the chance to show I can play at least semi-regularly and I can help. Now, I'm getting the chance."

Mordecai ended up playing more than four seasons with Montreal. He played in more than 80 games over three of them, and more than 100 in one of them. 

He also eventually made it back to the World Series, with the Marlins in 2003, and played a big role in a key inning to get them there.

Mordecai's career began in 1989, taken by the Braves in the sixth round of the draft out of the University of South Alabama.

Mordecai started with the Braves at single-A Burlington and AA Greenville. He played 1990 and 1991 at high-A Durham, then first saw AAA in 1992 with Richmond.

Mordecai continued with Richmond into 1994. He then debuted with the Braves in Atlanta that May. He saw four games and went 1 for 4.

He then returned for 69 games in 1995, 66 in 1996 and 61 in 1997. He got into three games in the 1995 World Series and went 1 for 4. He then saw another at bat in 1996.

Mordecai joined the Expos for 1998. He hit .202 in 73 games. He then hit .235 in 109 appearances in 1999 and .284 in 86 games in 2000. 

He arrived with the Marlins in mid-2003 and spoke with the South Florida Sun Sentinel the next spring about his role as a utility man.

"You have to accept your role," Mordecai told The Sun Sentinel. "I never know what will happen when I come to the park. The lineup guys know their roles. My job is dictated by the game."

Mordecai saw 65 games for the Marlins that year and hit .213. That fall, he made the Marlins NLCS roster. He played in three games, including in the pivotal "Steve Bartman inning." Mordecai hit the bases-clearing double that broke the game open.

"The guy is a solid, solid professional," teammate Jeff Conine told The Miami Herald of Mordecai after that game. "He knows his role and when called upon does his job. Tonight, he did more than his job."

Mordecai saw 69 more games with the Marlins in 2004, then two final games in 2005 to end his career.

Mordecai later served as a quality control coach with the Blue Jays and as manager at AA New Hampshire in 2019.

Mike Mordecai 1990 Durham Bulls card, Mordecai up close holding a bat

1990 Minor League Tally 
Players/Coaches Featured:4,162
Made the Majors:1,374-33.0%-X
Never Made Majors:2,788-67.0%
5+ Seasons in the Majors:558-X
10+ Seasons in the Minors:340

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