Mike Marshall was signed by the Philadelphia Phillies in 1961. There is no record of Marshall pitching in the minors until 1965. He pitched for two Phillies minor league clubs in 1965 and then was sold to the Detroit Tigers in April 1966. Mike pitched in the minors in 1966 and then came up to the Tigers in May 1967. Marshall was 1-3 with ten saves and had a 1.98 ERA in 37 games.
Marshall was back in the minors in 1968. After the 1968 season Mike was chosen by the Seattle Pilots in the expansion draft. Marshall was 3-10 with a 5.13 ERA in 20 games (14 starts) for the Pilots in '69. Mike was sold to the Houston Astros after the 1969 season.
Marshall was in the minors for part of the 1970 season. He pitched for the Astros for a short time (0-1, 8.44 ERA in four games) and was traded to the Montreal Expos for Don Bosch on June 23. Mike pitched in 24 games (5 starts) and went 3-7 with three saves and a 3.48 ERA.
In 1971 the Expos made Mike a full-time reliever. Marshall went 5-8 with 23 saves and a 4.28 ERA in 66 games. Mike led the NL with 65 appearances in 1972 and was 14-8 with 18 saves an a 1.78 ERA. Marshall was fourth in NL Cy Young Award voting and 10th in MVP voting.
Mike continued to improve in 1973. He finished second to Tom Seaver in Cy Young Award voting and fifth in MVP voting. Marshall was 14-11 with a 2.66 ERA and led the NL in appearances (92) and saves (31). Mike Marshall: The Pitcher Nobody Wanted - December 1973 Baseball Digest. After the season Mike was traded to the Los Angeles Dodgers for Willie Davis.
In 1974 Marshall set a record for appearances with 106. He pitched 208 innings and helped the Dodgers to the NL pennant. Marshall was an NL All Star and pitched two scoreless innings in the All Star Game. Mike won the NL Cy Young Award and finished third behind teammate Steve Garvey and Lou Brock in MVP voting. Marshall was 15-12 with a league leading 21 saves and a 2.42 ERA. Mike appeared in two games in the NLCS and in all five games of the World Series (he saved game 2 and took the loss in game 5). Mike Marshall: The Dodgers' Ironman Reliever - November 1974 Baseball Digest
Marshall pitched in 57 games in 1975 and was 9-14 with 13 saves and a 3.29 ERA. Mike started the 1976 season with the Dodgers (4-3, 8 saves, 4.43 ERA) and was traded to the Atlanta Braves for Elias Sosa and Lee Lacy on June 23. Mike was 2-1 with six saves and an ERA of 3.19 in 24 games for the Braves in '76.
Mike pitched in four games for the Braves in 1977 before being sold to the Texas Rangers on April 30. Marshall had back surgery to repair a damaged disk and didn't pitch after June 27. He pitched in 12 games (4 starts) for the Rangers and was 2-2 with a 4.04 ERA. After the 1977 season Mike became a free agent and signed with the Minnesota Twins.
Marshall had a return to form and had two good seasons for the Twins. In 1978 Mike was 10-12 with 21 saves and a 2.45 ERA in 54 games. Marshall led the AL with 90 appearances and 34 saves in 1979 and was 10-15 with a 2.65 ERA. Mike finished fifth in AL Cy Young Award voting and 11th in AL MVP voting. Can Computer Data Make A Pitcher More Effective? - Baseball Digest May 1979.
Mike went 1-3 with one save and a 6.18 ERA in 18 games and was released on June 6 (Twins owner Calvin Griffith didn't agree with Marshall's union activities). Marshall didn't pitch again in 1980. In 1981 he signed with the New York Mets after the strike and was with them at the end of August and in September. Mike went 3-2 with a 2.60 ERA in 20 games in 1981 and was released after the season.
Marshall tried a comeback at the age of 40 in 1983 but it lasted only one game as he allowed nine runs in one inning for AAA Edmonton.
Toward the end of his playing career Marshall earned a PhD in exercise physiology. He runs a pitching facility in Florida.
Here is a "where are they now" article from 2000.
- Remembering The Days of Former Pitcher Mike Marshall - Baseball Digest December 2003
Here is an article about Marshall and his unorthodox training methods from 2007.
Liked to face: Merv Rettenmund/Duffy Dyer (.000 in 10 AB); Darrell Evans (.038 in 26 AB); Don Money (.059 in 17 AB)
Hated to face: Mario Mendoza (3 for 4); Larry Milbourne (.571 in 14 AB); Carl Yastrzemski (.533 in 15 AB)