Manager Fredi Gonzalez figured the team probably wouldn't start whittling the spring training roster until after it got past a couple of split-squad dates next week. But the front office decided it was time to start trimming now, and Thursday made the first deletions, optioning right-hander Ryan Tucker to Triple A New Orleans and re-assigning left-hander Jay Voss to minor-league camp.
Tucker was coming off a poor outing on Tuesday against the Red Sox, after which he disclosed to reporters that he suffered from Reynaud's syndrome, a condition which can lead to numbness in the extremities when exposed to the cold. Tucker was constantly blowing on his hand during Tuesday's outing, in which the game-time temperature was announced at 72 degrees. Tucker had surgery on his left knee last season and was limited to six starts in the minors.
Tucker went two innings against Boston, allowing a pair of earned runs on two hits and three walks. Voss has not made a Grapefruit League appearance for the Marlins, but pitched 1 1/3 innings of scoreless relief in the UM exhibition.
Thursday's moves leave 59 players in camp.
-- Gonzalez is telling reporters this morning in Jupiter that he was "not ready to rule out" the possibility of outfielder Mike Stanton opening the season with the Marlins, but I wouldn't count on it. Stanton is having a fine spring so far, but it's not time to start hyperventilating over a four-game performance in which he has gone 5 for 15 with a pair of homers, three walks and seven runs scored. Stanton will be in the lineup in due time. But, with his limited experience, it's hard to envision many scenarios in which he would supplant one of the three projected outfield starters -- Chris Coghlan, Cameron Maybin and Cody Ross -- and the Marlins would be foolish to bury him on their bench as a fourth outfielder. If the groin injuries to Maybin and Ross linger into the season, that could alter plans. But it's far more likely Stanton will start the season in the minors, where he can get at bats and continue to mature as a player.