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Spring Training [Wednesday Morning Quarterback]
Mar 17th, 2010 by Dan

Josh Johnson warming up in Nationals Park on 4 August 2009

It’s gonna be a short one this week.

Spring Training continues down in Florida and Arizona as teams are making cuts to their rosters, sending players down to the minor leagues or releasing them as they see fit. Most team rosters are starting to take shape and both Stephen Strasburg and Aroldis Chapman have pitched (quite beautifully) a couple of games each.

The Tampa Bay Rays are leading the Grapefruit league (for all that it matters) with a 10-3 record, while the Marlins are tied for fourth with an 8-6 record. Prospects-wise, it looks like Desmond Jennings might not be earning his spot on Tampa Bay’s roster until Crawford is gone, but in the Marlins camp, the competition between Gaby Sanchez and Logan Morrison has all but been decided in Sanchez’s favor. I’m not sure if the Marlins will have Mike Stanton on the opening day roster, but the way he’s playing, they damn well should.

Pitching is looking a little weak for Florida since the lefties on the team, Andrew Miller and Sean West, are not performing along with Chris Volstad who has had an awful spring. What the team does with its rotation will be interesting.

And that’s about it for this week. We’re down to 18 days before the regular season starts. I got a Longoria jersey in the mail a few days ago, so I’m ready for some baseball!

Good Things Are Coming For the Fish [Wednesday Morning Quarterback]
Jan 27th, 2010 by Dan

After being slammed by the players and owners year after year, the Marlins have finally started to buckle and spend a lot more for their personnel. You can partially thank the finalization of the stadium deal for this renewed vigor, of course, but the benefit is the same no matter what the source of this change is: actual spending on player talent.

That’s why, for the first time in years, the Marlins have actually entered a season looking to capitalize on the previous year’s success with a squad that mirrors the year before. Josh Johnson, one of the ace pitchers of the NL, has been offered a 4-year contract worth $39 million and Dan Uggla will not be traded at this point in the year either. It’s looking like the core producers will still be around.

On the cheaper side of the fence, the rookie-of-the-year performance by Chris Coghlan last season will hopefully begin to motivate the other up-and-coming stars, Cameron Maybin, Gaby Sanchez, and Logan Morrison, to get their act together and begin to produce at a professional level. It’s not great to have a team that’s 100% young, but the Marlins need to bring at least two of them up to cover holes at first and in the outfield. Good luck to you, rookies.

Other than that, it’ll just be a question of whether or not the Marlins rotation will produce consistent wins. Headed by Johnson, hopefully it will.

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