It has been exactly 22 years to the day since the Dodgers shipped out Mike Piazza to the Florida Marlins. At this point in his career, Piazza had already been a five-time All-Star, winning a Rookie of the Year award and five Silver Slugger awards in the process.
For most Dodgers fans, this trade represents a memory as painful as the Pedro Martinez trade or letting Adrian Beltre get away. Coincidentally, all three of these things happened fairly close together, making the nineties and early 2000’s very difficult. But Piazza was unhappy with the way contract negotiations were going, and ownership saw a chance to get whatever they could before free agency. That’s about the nicest way you can say it.
So instead of keeping their perennial All-Star backstop, the Dodgers instead sent Piazza and Todd Zeile to the Marlins. Their return certainly wasn’t anything to scoff at, getting Gary Sheffield, Bobby Bonilla, Charles Johnson, and Jim Eisenreich. Sheffield played for the Dodgers through 2001 and became the only real contributor in the deal.
Sheffield would slash .312/.424/.573 with 129 homeruns over the next…