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Marlins want to keep Infante; McKeon upset with Stanton

Infante     PITTSBURGH -- Omar Infante has so impressed the Marlins -- both on and off the field -- that they are prepared to extend an offer to the steady second baseman after the season. Infante, whom the Marlins obtained with reliever Mike Dunn in the Dan Uggla trade with Atlanta, can become a free agent.

    Infante has played Gold Glove-caliber defense, is hitting .342 since the All-Star break, and has earned the respect of his teammates with his work ethnic and quiet clubhouse presence. Infante's last contract paid him $1.85 million in 2009, $2.25 million in '10 and $2.5 million this season.


    Jack McKeon is not the least bit happy with Mike Stanton, who told the manager he was fine to play Friday but proved otherwise when he ran at half-speed after a ball hit to right. It was Stanton's first game back in the lineup since a right hamstring injury put him on the bench.

     Stanton was lifted for a pinch-runner after he singled in the third inning. Following the game, he told reporters he didn't tweak the hamstring.

     "That's the speed I have right now," Stanton said. "It's not very fast, but I didn't aggravate it at all.  If they're okay with that speed...that's where I'm at."

     McKeon said he's not okay with it and kept Stanton out of Saturday's lineup.

     "I can't put him out there if that's the fastest he can run," McKeon said. "He told me he was fine (before Friday's game). He told the trainer he was fine. When I asked him, he said he was ready, and evidently he wasn't. So when he's 100 percent, I'll put him out there. I don't want him to tweak it. I want him to tell me when he's ready. You guys saw him. I can't afford to put him out there like that. When I saw him running before the game, he was running a whole lot better than that. I don't know what the reason is. There's no sense taking a chance on hurting him more. If he's not up to par, he's not helping us out there playing like he played last night."


    Stanton isn't the only Marlin who has been bitten by the sore hamstring bug. Infielder Jose Lopez strained his right hamstring while running up the line on a single on Friday. Outfielder Mike Cameron remained out of the lineup, as well, with a tender right hamstring.

    Cameron said he hopes to be ready to play when the team is in Atlanta next week. He said it could it be the last time his daughter sees him play in person, as he might retire after the season.

    Logan Morrison was also given the night off tonight after slamming into the wall in foul territory on Friday and bruising his right knee. McKeon said Morrison's knee "blew up like a balloon", but was impressed that Morrison refused to come out. "He's a gamer," McKeon said.

    "I would hope most of the wounded would be ready by Monday," McKeons said of his banged up outfield, as well as Lopez.


    Alex Sanabia made his first appearance with the Marlins in Friday's blowout, but labored a bit, allowing a hit and two walks in one inning of relief work. He also struck out two. McKeon said he would have preferred to see a better performance.

    "We got a chance to look at Sanabia last night, just for one inning," McKeon said. "He wasn't as sharp as he was last year. But, on the other hand, there's a guy who hasn't pitched a whole lot this year."

    With a doubleheader looming Thursday, the Marlins will need an extra starter. Originally, McKeon thought Sanabia would make one of the starts in Philly. On Saturday, though, he said it could either be Sanabia or a bullpen game.


     With so many injuries, the Marlins lineup tonight isn't one that looks like it'll repeat Friday night's 13-run, 22-hit explosion. McKeon termed it a "skeleton crew."

     Marlins: 1. Emilio Bonifacio, lf; 2. Bryan Petersen, cf; 3. Omar Infante, 2b; 4. Gaby Sanchez, 1b; 5. John Buck, c; 6. Donnie Murphy, ss; 7. Matt Dominguez, 3b; 8. Vinny Rottino, rf; 9. Anibal Sanchez, p.

     Pirates: 1. Alex Presley, lf; 2. Chase d'Arnaud, ss; 3. Andrew McCutchen, cf; 4. Derrek Lee, 1b; 5. Neil Walker, 2b; 6. Ryan Ludwick, rf; 7. Pedro Alvarez, 3b; 8. Michael McKenry, c; 9. Jeff Locke, p.