Bench players Brian Barden and Mike Lamb got the good news this morning that -- barring injuries, trades or lightning strikes -- they had made the club. No huge surprises. But the roster is now all but officially set, save for the Cody Ross situation, as the Marlins prepare to break camp and head north.
We just finished talking with Ross, who will not play again today due to his calf injury but remains cautiously optimistic that he can still get ready in time to be with the club on Opening Day.
"We're going to take it day by day," Ross said. "It's not (Opening Day) ruled out. But it's getting close to making a decision. I'm just going to keep in close contact with Fredi (Gonzalez) and Mike (Hill) and Larry (Beinfest) and make sure I'm smart about it, and not try to be a hero. It's either four games that I miss, or it could turn into an eight-week process if I go out there and re-aggravate it.
"I feel good about it. I'm optimistic. I'm not ruling anything out. I don't think they are either. Obviously I want to be there. I want to play and help the team. But I want to be smart about it."
Saturday is the deadline for the Marlins to turn in their 25-man roster.
Meanwhile, the Marlins made their final cuts Thursday before taking the field for their final Grapefruit League game.
Outfielder Bryan Petersen, catcher Brad Davis and infielder Donnie Murphy were told they would start the season at Triple A New Orleans. Infielder Hector Luna packed his bags and left after being told he wasn't making the club.