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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.

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    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."

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    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.

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    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.

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     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.

Comments

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Stan M

Great to hear Marlins want to resign Infante. Hope they can talk Vazquez out of retirement and resign him as well.

Something has to be going on below the board between Coghlan and the FO. How can they leave a healthy Coghlan in AAA and play Murphy in his stead? It doesn't make sense, especially when preparing for next year.

Doesn't it seem time for an orthopedist and a shoe company to get together and design better footgear for baseball players? All of these muscle pulls don't seem natural. Personally, I don't like the way players slow down (too quickly?) after being thrown out at first base. Those forced stops look as if they put a great deaal of stress on the legs in general. Why not run a few more steps and stop more naturally?

spitballer

That is GOOD news that the FO wants to make Omar an offer. I hope they make a fair offer & get him signed.

laurelbowie

Stan M,
The Zephyrs season is over and my guess is the Marlins just want Coghlan to lay out and get well. At least, I hope there's nothing more sinister going on.
I'm on board with you and Spitballer regarding Infante. I think the Fish really need his steady hand.

Flav C

Infante is the answer for 2B, there is no need to improvise with Boni or anybody else. Now, if only Dominguez is able to prove he is the sure-glove all scouts said he was, the Marlins will look good in the infield defensively. I'm not going to elaborate on Hanley's skills as a defensive player since we all know he has a lot to improve in this aspect.

Jackie

Beyond Infante and Anibal, the MARLINS NEED TO EXTEND MIKE STANTON. Are they dumbasses for doing that same year to year type thing? Look at what the Rays did with Longoria and Brewers with Braun, if they dont do extension now then Stanton will price himself out a few years from now. DO THAT BEFORE NEXT SEASON.

Shane Cauty

I think Matt Dominguez should be eased into the role. Maybe have him as bench player/fringe starter in 2012. Infante should be back and as should Dobbs, maybe you put Boni in center and Petey Pipes is 4th OF. As for Cogs, he isnt sure thing have him prove he is and i dont know he is a pretty good bench option for me.

I feel as though they need another bat though, its too much of the same lineup. BJ Upton is my fav option. Maybe you trade Cogs for him along with that embarassment of a closer in leo nunez.

3B Bonifacio
CF Upton
LF Morrison
SS Ramirez
1B Sanchez
RF Stanton
C Buck
2B Infante

that is a great lineup. period

Stan M

I'm sorry to disagree with you, Shane. But I don't want to go near this Upton. To me, he's no better than Cameron, a lot like him, but much more expensive. Coghlan should be our CF and if Peterson cotinues to develop, then he should be in LF and as much as I like him, Gabby should be part of a package for a very good stating pitcher. Otherwise, either Peterson, LoMo, or Coghlan is wasted, and I feel all three have a bigger upside than Gabby.
And I really hate to say that, for Gabby is a fine player. Nonetheless, it is to the Marlin's favor that the others could be even better. Come on everyone, tell me how I'm full of it.

Nacional

Stan M, Gaby is our local boy, never gets hurt. Cogs is damaged goods; he will never be a CF. You want crazy Lomo on 1B?

Stan M

Of course.

Villa26

Make a deal for Justin Masterson
(RHP for the Cleveland Indians).

'witz

Infante probably will get better offers than Loria is willing to pay, and from better teams.

spitballer

witz brings up a BIG problem for the FO. My guess is tha Infante might actually like playing in Miami & give the Marlins a small discount.

Flav C

It's a tough call, but i have to agree with Stan. Gaby would be an excellent trade piece for a decent pitcher. LoMo can go back to his original position (1B).

Nacional

Since you think Lomo is so good, trade Lomo for TWO pitchers..

spitballer

Trading Gaby would be tough, being a homer. Besides, he is featured in the "coolest" commercial for the stadium. I don't see him being traded. I would still like to see LoMo in LF....Bonifacio in CF ( he's te same size as the Phils, Victorino & Emilio much faster) & Stanton in LF. I believe we could get a good pitcher via trade for Coughlan & Peterson.

Flav C

I didnt say Lomo is so good, just like i dont think Gaby is that good. Both are unproven players and still have a lot to play just to make an impression. Gaby has been having a horrible 2nd half, batting .236,just like last season when he finished the 2nd half batting .240. Is that a trend? Is it just coincidence? I dont know and you dont know, nobody knows. I dont care if Gaby is a local guy or if he comes from Micronesia. He has to prove he belongs. The same is valid for Lomo. I'd love for him to spend more time focusing on his swing that tweeting. All said and done, Logan is more of an impact player than Gaby, in my opinion. In the end, it doesnt matter what i think; both players will probably remain with the group and we'll not have a good pitcher next year, which is far more valuable than keeping any of these guys.

Stan M

Here is the problem as I see it. Assuming that Coghlan comes back in a normal fashion, and Perterson shows enough to be retained, we have one too many players for the available positions open to them. That is, unless Peterson becomes sort of a 4th outfielder.

Then in the infield, if Dominguez makes the team (and he will either be a regular or back in AAA ball) then we have one too many infielders; assuming they resign Infante. Now Bono has shown much too much to be a role player. So what happens, remembering that Loria loves to keep his money. The obvious answer would be to trade Hanley, but his value is so diminished that in reality he must be kept if for no other reason than to increase his eventual trading value. So where does Bono actually play? If in the OF, then we are back to my thoughts above that someone has to go and that will most likely be Gabby for LoMo is younger. lefthanded, and has a much higher ceiling. Does all of this sound like Bono will be at 2B and Infante become a Free Agent? That's a gamble, for 3B will still be unsettled at the season's start.However, it saves the most money...need I say more? We all want Infante back, but I see the problems listed. Peterson is still too green to have much trade value and Coghlan's future is too uncertain to make him a valuable trading piece. So the bottom line is, if Infante is resigned, then poor Gabby is probably a goner. Unless, of course, the FO just can't stand LoMo and dumps him (and me too) instead.

spitballer

Stan....here's my prediction....all of the players that are in the "coolest" comercial will be on the roster next year. All of the players that are not in that comercial....they are open for speculation.

laurelbowie

I'm like everybody else — I like to discuss who the Marlins should trade and who they should keep. Trouble is, it's all kind of meaningless without knowing who they'd be getting in return. There are scenarios where trading Gaby for a pitcher would be a fabulous move and scenarios where it would be a disaster. I'd trade away anybody on the team if the return were good enough, but based on what I've seen lately, I don't have a lot of confidence in the Marlins' ability to evaluate talent. I don't know how good LoMo is defensively at first base, but I think Gaby is on the verge of becoming one of the best-fielding first basemen in the league very soon. (I can imagine everybody out there snickering, but I really believe that.) You have to go at the this trade discussion from the opposite direction, deciding who we really want and then figuring out who'd we'd have to give up to get him.

laurelbowie

The pitcher I really want is C.J. Wilson. He'd fill the need for a very good lefty and he's been durable, which is something the Marlins need. He's making $7 mil and is a free agent (I believe) after this year. Unfortunately, he might end up being too pricey for the Fish, and he might be too quirky and outspoken for Loria's taste.

Flav C

CJ's availability will depend on Texas' fate during post-season. I'd think Bumgarner is a big possibility on a trade.

laurelbowie

Bumgarner would be great (and affordable). Now who would the Fish have to give up to get him?

Trading 101

If you're looking at Gaby as trade bait , find a team that needs a first baseman like him. Then look at the starting pitchers in their organization. Then look at the postion players for an additional player/package deal. If it makes the Team better and if it makes sense and you get what you want, you just might make the deal. You have to give to get. No one player on the Marlins is untouchable.

Flav C

SFGiants have Huff as their 1B, veteran player and has contract until end of '12 season. Belt (SF rookie) would be his natural replacement so it would be hard to use Gaby as trade bait. They will have a real need on CF since Ross will be a Free agent and they've released Rowand already. Maybe a combo of Nunez (as relief pitcher) and Bryan Petersen (CF) would do it.

Flav C

Another thing that might help on a trade with SF is the fact that they will not go trigger-happy spending money on players. They DFAed Rowand recently but had to swallow the $ 12M they owe him in 2012. On top of that, they don't know what to do with Zito; they owe him $ 46M through 2012-2013. With so much money on the table, a trade would make sense to them. And bringing a good pitcher on the cheap would make even more sense to cheap-o Loria.

laurelbowie

The Giants have built their entire identity around their starting pitching and it's hard to imagine that they'd give up their only lefty starter (if you don't count Zito) for a promising but unproven outfielder and a walking timebomb of a relief pitcher. Bet they WOULD trade Sandoval and Baumgarner for Hanley, once Hanley has his surgery and is certified healthy. I'd go for that in a heartbeat. If the Panda is as popular in Miami as he is in SF, he could help fill the seats in the new park. In fact, he could fill three or four of them all by himself.

Stan M

Oh LB,
I proposed a Hanley for Baumgarner trade way back when he was healthy. SF wouldn't even consider trading just one of your proposed players even up for Hanley. Hanley is no longer the batting champion with power. He is a .250 hitter, average to below average fielder, with questionable health and a bad attitude He has a huge contract. Both Sanduval and Baumgarner are still relatively cheap and under club control for some time. We don't need Sandoval anyway, we have enough bad fielding players. I would be surprised of SF would give up Baumgarner for Hanley, Gabby, and Peterson right now. I wouldn't if I were they. Agree on C. Wilson as a Free Agent signing if TX is crazy enough to let him walk. And to get anther decent, not spectacular pitcher, it will take at least Gabby and Nunez and maybe another. We simply must resign Vazquez; a pitcher of his ability would cost at least Gabby and Nunez plus another. Baumgarner is so good, and young, that I would gladly trade JJ, Gabby and Nunez for him and I seriously doubt that SF would even consider such a trade.

Flav C

Hey LB, if we can bring Sandoval, we would have guaranteed for sure at least 8 seats being filled, between him and Ceda.

Stan M

It probably sounds crazy to say that I would think of trading JJ for Baumgarner. First off, I would not substitute Sanchez or Nolasco for JJ in the proposed trade above. My feeling is that JJ is seriously damaged goods. A player of enormous talent, but one who has spent too much of his career hurt. Furthermore, shoulder problems are not as easily cured as elbow problems. And at his best, JJ was a 6-7 inning pitcher who put too much strain on the bullpen to be considered a true ace. Gabby is a fine all around player, but as a first baseman, he would rate somewhere in the middle of the pack of major league players; perhaps even a little below average as 1st baseman go. Besides all of that, he could be the odd man out as stated above if Infante is resigned. Nunez is strictly addition by subtraction so who cares.
So the trade as I see it is essentially JJ for Baumgarner and if the Giants would make that trade, I think they would be crazy..

laurelbowie

Stan M,
I truly want Baumgarner, but I wouldn't trade away as much as you would. First of all, I think the Fish could get a truckload of talented young guys — including some who could help right now — for JJ despite his injury problems. And if they trade away Johnson for Baumgarner, they still have a big pitching hole to fill, which means trading away another big chunk of the current lineup to replace him (since we have no prospects to trade). And as good as he is, Baumgarner hasn't been around long enough to prove he's going to be both consistent and durable. One star pitcher isn't going to do the Marlins much good if they've got nothing else going for them.

laurelbowie

BTW, I was under the impression that the Panda was a pretty good fielder, although I admit I haven't paid that much attention. I guess you guys can set me straight on that.

Glags

Everyone has valid arguments about who should or could be traded but as stated in a previous post none of it matters unless you get value in return. Can we trust the scouting in this organization to make the right choice? About packaging Leo Nunez I don't really see why this guy holds any value as a closer or as reliever with an era over 4. Anyways I'd like to see Gabby stay and acquire a pitcher in FA though there aren't many sexy names out there. Maybe Vazquez sits out the first half and comes back in the second half like Pedro Martinez did for the Phils. Assuming of course the fish are in contention and he isn't already with another team.

Glags

I say give Infante whatever he wants if he earns the Gold Glove. The guy is a defensive magician. He's shown he can hit and was surprised to see him struggle the first half.

laurelbowie

Glags,
Vazquez has gotten stronger and stronger as the season progresses and doesn't have any injuries to nurse along that I'm aware of. So if the Fish are lucky enough to have him back, I don't see any reason to sit him for part of the season. He'll come to spring training in better shape than most of the young studs, I can almost guarantee you. You know, the guy is half my age and in baseball terms, he's an old fart. Man, that hurts!

Glags

LB I agree that Vazquez has been magnificent after he exorcised whatever demons were plaguing him. However, my understanding was that he wasnt questioning his ability to pitch but rather he wanted to spend more time with his family. Shoot if we can have another year like this from him I'd take it in a heartbeat. I think he's earned the $7 million he got. I remember at one point I wouldn't watch the games on the days he would pitch. He turned it around and collectively has a had a decent season.

laurelbowie

Yeah, Glags, it's amazing how things change. The first half of the season we were all cussing and wondering how they could have blown $7 million on that loser. Then overnight his body language changed and he became an entirely different pitcher. I really admire the guy for gutting it out and pulling himself together, because you know Randy St. Claire wasn't much help. He's got a lot pride and I think the first half of the season scared the hell out of him. So he's probably going to leave after this season while he can do it on his own terms. I would love to have him back next year, but he's earned the right to do what's best for him and his family.

Stan M

Glags and LB,
We all want Vazquez back and surely the FO does as well. Maybe some sort of creative contract could be worked out wherein he goes home for a day or two after pitching while at home in Miami. Starters don't do much for the first two days anyway. Another idea would be for the team to move his family to Miami for parts of the season. The man is unquestionably proud and now that his pitching has become so superlative, his desire to retire might have lessened. Let's hope so.

laurelbowie

Another sterling performance by Infante tonight (Monday). Wow!

laurelbowie

I spoke too soon. Wow again!

Trading 101

Anybody question all the injuries this season?

Trading 101

On a winning team ,you normally have 3-4 core players ,playing at least 150 games a season. Not so on this roster.

Flav C

Talking about injuries, as we approach the post-season the Phillies look more and more like the team to beat, even in the injuries aspect. The other contenders are full of players in the DL or banged up enough to be listed as day-to-day. The Phillies are pretty healthy at this point.

Flav C

What about those Rays? Last night they guaranteed their 4th consecutive winning season and if they continue playing that good, they might be rewarded with a playoff trip, which would be its 3rd in the last 4 seasons. Payroll? Second to last in the entire MLB, only the Royals have a lower payroll than the Rays.

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