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Can Sanabia fill void in Marlins' rotation?

PITTSBURGH -- One thing the Marlins have been searching for over the last two seasons is a consistent fourth and fifth option in the rotation. With Josh Johnson, Ricky Nolasco and Anibal Sanchez strongly entrenched at the top, several young arms have auditioned for the other roles but have failed to remain consistent.

Thursday night, 21-year old Alex Sanabia showed what he could do when he's at his best, throwing two-hit ball for seven plus innings before the Pirates finally knocked him out. 

Sanabia, a former 32nd round pick, has never had overpowering stuff. His season-high for strike outs this season in Double A Jacksonville was eight. But what makes him good is that he doesn't walk many guys. His strikeout to walk ratio after Thursday's start, the fifth in the big leagues, is now 25 to 7.

Walks have been the biggest hurdles for guys like Chris Volstad, Sean West and Andrew Miller to overcome at this level.


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He is our guy!!!!


Not much of a sample size to make a decision but I like what I see so far.


I am really disappointed with the 6'7", 6'8" high draft, soft throwing pitchers with no command that the Marlins have. Let West, Volstad, and Miller go. There was no reason Sanabia was sent down last time. He had one rough outing, and that was it. He was very effective in his other appearances. West and Volstad don't throw hard enough to be effective in the majors, specially with the stuff they have.


I concur about the fallacy of the prevailing wisdom that bigger is always better. Many of these big guys have terrible mechanics and command and are prone to major arm problems.

Do you remember Greg Maddux? Not overpowering but a pitcher in every sense of the word.

I hope Sanabia can be half as good. Obviously, the kid took his brief demotion the right way, worked on a few things and was terrific last night.


Pitchers need good coaching, Fielding needs good coaching. We let the best coaches we had leave by not paying them ( SO WHAT ELSE IS NEW ). It took Maddux and the entire Braves staff time together with Mizzeli to get it going. When are we going to hire a true Pitching and Hitting coach, regardless of the Manager, who can consistently work with the players, day in day out. Bring Back Perry for the infielders and the Larry for the pitchers, then lets see what these guys can really do.

Paula X.

Larry Rothschild? There's a blast from the past --BUT in the past the Marlins were great at making it with the talent they had, no matter how young. It's the rookies keeping us in it. The long-reliever trade was probably just a token to keep the guys optimistic, ownership could have done more to get veteran arm. The pitchers are still young, could use a mentor..Glad about Sanabia, I was rooting for him before, shocked about Miller. But then again so was he! Why do we have to watch the Marlins train him??


If good coaching is the answer to all our problems, why then Leo Mazone (BTW E L it's Mazone) fail when he went to the Red Sox, why do some great hitting coaches become terrible when and get fired. Because you need the horses. You need the talent. No matter how much coaching you give a pitcher who throws 87, he's not going to throw 97. No matter how much coach you would have given Mario Mendoza, the Mendoza line would still have been .200. You need the talent first. Coaching help....but without talent you can't have a winner. Talent trumps coaching anytime.

Tony Carles

Miller, West and Volstad have not proven that they are major league material. Each has been up and down but none has been able to adapt to big league hitters. I suggest they be kept in the minors and the team bring up some new pitchers. Possibly there is another Sanabia in New Orleans or Jacksonville.

Stan M

Tony...there are two young pitchers in AA ball named Koehler and Villenueva who have excellent W/L records as well as surprisingly good walk/strikeout ratios. They've got to be as good as some of the cannon fodder that's been run out there lately! Agree with all above who liked Sanabia. If steel nerves are a criterion of success, the guy has a good chance to make it. One point where I disagree. West and Miller are born losers but Volstad has shown enough to offer future hope. There were comparisons above to Sanabia's lack of a blazing speed as compared to Maddux (and I'd add Glavin.) May I offer Volstad's huge frame to Randy Johnson's for comparison. Nowhere near the same potential, but Volstad is still about two years removed from when Randy came into his own. Let's hope for the best.


The difference between Volstad and Johnson is the Johnson always had the blazing fastball.

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