Newspaper article The Florida Times Union

Saccomanno Wants Another Shot; Stint in Majors Has Suns First Baseman Longing for Chance with Marlins

Newspaper article The Florida Times Union

Saccomanno Wants Another Shot; Stint in Majors Has Suns First Baseman Longing for Chance with Marlins

Article excerpt

Byline: JEFF ELLIOTT

When you get a taste of something you like, you'll want more.

For Jacksonville Suns first baseman Mark Saccomanno, that good taste came in September of 2008, when he was called up to the Houston Astros. He played in 10 games with the Astros and had two hits in 10 at-bats.

His first hit was especially memorable, a home run on the first pitch of his first at-bat. Saccomanno became the 20th player in major-league history to accomplish that feat.

His call-up was a reward for a season at Triple-A Round Rock, where he had a .297 average, 27 home runs and 84 RBI. It was the second of three consecutive years at Round Rock, where his average ranged from .277 to .297.

At the end of the 2009 season, the Astros released Saccomanno after seven seasons in their minor-league system. They drafted him in the 23rd round in 2003 out of Baylor.

The Florida Marlins signed him as a free agent in February this year and assigned him to the Suns because top prospect Logan Morrison held the starting job at first base for Triple-A New Orleans.

Saccomanno's quest now is to jump Morrison and get to a Marlins uniform.

"You get a taste of it playing in the big leagues, and then you come back and you're busing 14 hours to sites, while up there you're flying private jets and eating catered food," Saccomanno said. "It's definitely nice to think about and to know what it's about and the feeling you got when you were there. And, yes, I plan on being back there."

If Saccomanno keeps hitting as he did in May, he might.

After hitting .231 in April, he put together an eight-game hitting streak. He had an 11-game streak end in Tuesday's 5-4 win over Carolina. He hit .295 in May, increasing his season average to .270.

What continues to lag for the 6-3, 210-pounder is his ability to hit the long ball.

He's had four seasons of 20 or more home runs, with a high of 27 in 2008. But his Jacksonville total is two in 46 games, a far cry from his home run average of one every 6.5 games (in 782 minor-league games) before this season.

Saccomanno said he's not concerned about the lack of homers. …

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