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The "Big Worm" Hooks on with the Fish: Mike Stanton Promoted from Minors


    Make room for the "Big Worm."

    The Marlins announced Sunday that they are calling up outfielder Mike Stanton, who will join the team on Tuesday when they open a three-game series in Philadelphia against the Phillies.

    Stanton, who has hit .311 with 21 home runs and 52 RBI for Double A Jacksonville, was scratched from the Suns lineup on Sunday in Montgomery, Ala.

   Stanton won't be the only new face when the team arrives in Philadelphia. They also called up infielder Emilio Bonifacio and pitcher Rick VandenHurk from Triple A New Orleans. Mike Lamb was designated for assignment while outfielder Brett Carroll and reliever Tim Wood were optioned to Triple A.

    The arrival of Stanton, a 20-year-old outfielder with tremendous power, is the most anticipated call-up since the Marlins promoted Miguel Cabrera from the minors in 2003.

   Stanton is almost universally regarded as one of the game's top five young prospects. Before the season, Baseball America rated Stanton as baseball's third-ranked prospect, behind Atlanta outfielder Jason Heyward and Washington pitcher Stephen Strasburg. Stanton will likely make his debut on Tuesday at Citizens Bank Park, about 125 miles from Nationals Park where Strasburg is scheduled to make his pitching debut for Washington.

   Listed at 6-5, 233 lbs., Stanton possesses tape-measure strength. He hit a home run last month in Montgomery, Ala., that traveled an estimated 500 feet. When manager Fredi Gonzalez introduced him to Bill Parcells in spring training, the player personnel czar for the Dolphins said Stanton looked "wormy," thus his nickname.

   Since the Marlins are on the road through the end of the week, with stops in Philadelphia and St. Petersburg, the first time South Florida fans will have a chance to see him will be on June 15 when the Marlins open a series with the Texas Rangers. 

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