11 March 2011
When the Marlins came into Spring Training this year their roster looked more like that of the Dolphins in Training Camp than a team heading to Spring Training with the amount of players they had. The Marlins started to trim down their roster yesturday before their split squad games. The Marlins optioned RHP Jose Ceda to AAA New Orleans, RHPs Chris Hatcher, Evan Reed, and Omar Poveda were optioned to AA Jacksonville, and RHP Arquimedes Caminero will get to stay where he is, but was optioned to Class A Jupiter. The final move the Marlins made was sending top prospect LHP Chad James to Minor League Camp. Marlins still hve a sizable roster with 53 players on it, 25 of which are pitchers. With opening day 3 weeks away and starting pitchers expected to go about 5 innings in their next start, more players should be optioned back to the minors soon.
The Marlins are still not doing well in terms of wins and losses this spring. The Marlins loss both games of their split squad last night, and neither were close, leaving the Marlins with a 5-7 record and next to last in the Grapefruit League. On the bright side, no Marlins starting pitcher (Sanchez, Volstad, Johnson, Vazquez) has pitched poorly since Volstad's and Johnson's first starts of the springs and Ricky Nolasco was cleared to make his first start of the spring this Saturday. Also Matt Dominguez has upped his batting average to .316 this spring dispite going 0 for with a strikeout last night. Barring injury or an absolute colapse in the next three weeks, you can just about mark it down the Dominguez will be the Marlins starting 3rd baseman.
Of the other back up/bench positions on the Marlins opening day roster things may come down to the final week. In the race for third outfielder Dewayne Wise seems to be the leader at this point. He definitely has the best glove between him Bryan Petersen and Scott Cousins, and he is also hitting the best of the three right now. Cousins was running almost neck and neck with Wise after the first week, but he has been slumping at the plate lately and his average has dropped to .231. As for the backup infielder role, Wes Helms pretty much will be on the team no matter what he does so that is one spot gone. Ozzie Martinez and Emilio Bonefacio have both played well in the field and are hitting over .310 (Bonifacio .368 and Martinez .316), and as a result Donnie Murphy may be the odd man out. While Murphy has made a few good plays at shortstop, his average over a hundred points lower than Ozzie Martinez (.214). The biggest surprise has to be Greg Dobbs. Dobbs was signed to a minor league contract and was the guy who was either going to back up or split time with Wes Helms if Matt Dominguez was not ready for the majors. Last night against Detroit, Greg Dobbs went 3 for 4 and raised his average to .615 this spring. Although Dominguez looks major league ready, if Greg Dobbs keeps hitting the way he has this spring he may force the Marlins to find a bench spot for him.
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