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Marlins send "Cy Young" to minors

    VIERA -- Getting set for a night game at Space Coast Stadium, former spring training home of the Marlins, where the news of the hour is the optioniong of left-hander Wade LeBlanc to Triple A. LeBlanc had such a terrific spring that manager Ozzie Guillen referred to him at one point as the "Cy Young" of spring training.

    So much for that.

    The Marlins have obviously decided they were better off stashing LeBlanc in New Orleans for safekeeping until the need arises for starting help. LeBlanc has been used almost exlusively as a starter throughout his career, and he'll continue to be used  in that capacity with the Zephyrs. Had the Marlins kept LeBlanc (1.31 ERA with 19 K's in 20 2/3 innings this spring) and used him as a long man, their bullpen would have also contained three left handers.

     "We need him to stay ready (as a starter), just in case we need him at any point," said manager Ozzie Guillen. "That makes us feel more comfortable in case something happens up here."

    With LeBlanc no longer in the picture, indications are the final bullpen position -- a long relief spot -- will go to journeyman Chad Gaudin, who was impressive in pitching three scoreless on Thursday. In nine games covering 14 1/3 innings, Gaudin has allowed 12 hits (including a pair of home runs), while striking out 11 and walking 6.

    A decision still remains between Donnie Murphy and Donovan Solano for the utility infield job.

Comments

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Stan M

The Mystifying Marlins:
Signing Reyes, Buehlre, and Bell were terrific moves. Resigning Infante for two years was understandable and probably had to be done because of the uncertainty in the OF. Would the team be better off with Bono at 2B and Coghlan in CF? They couldn't take the chance, but I wish it had been a one year signing because Infante's numbers outside of his batting average are hollow. And by next year the team could well have Yelich in CF and where does BOno go? Super sub or 2B?All that being said, I couldn't understand the whole Cepedes fiasco. They claimed they wanted him, he wanted them, and then the money source evaporated and he was gone. In my mind, it did a lot to negate those initial signings. Then to give Nunez(sic) six million bucks after refusing to go higher on the Cuban made no sense at all. Now this Spring I question at least two moves. One was keeping that guy, Tippee, around taking up valuable at bats that should have gone to our outfield contenders. Even if Patterson, Coghlan or Cousins played some iB, at least something could be learned. Tippee is 32, has no history of hitting in previous trials and did nothing this Spring. So why was he taking up space and ABs. Lastly, every evaluator that I've read has postulated that Roland was washed up both at bat and in the field. Yet it took most of this Spring for the team to realize this?

I'm with so many of you who are happy to see Coghlan still on the team. If he produces, he is either a trading chip, or the team is faced with another decision. Will they want Coghlan in the OF and LoMo at IB, or Gabby at 1B and LoMo in LF. I'd go for the former.

Should we all have another contest and see who has the best prediction for the NL East. I'll go Philly, Marlins (wild card), Washington, Braves, and Mets. Braves manager 1st in majors to be fired

laurelbowie

Stan M,
Just to be different, I'll go Nats, Marlins, Braves, Phillies, Mets.
One or two of those great Phillies pitchers go down and they don't have much.

laurelbowie

Also, since I have the floor, if the Marlins had truly wanted the Cuban, they'd have signed him. They saw something they didn't like — or just didn't see enough that they did like to spend that kind of money on him. I think it was all a show for their new friends in Little Havana.

Stan M

LB,
It's not so much that they didn't sign him that I find mystifying. Rather it's the PR disaster that made the FO come out with egg on their face. Either way, it is also difficult to understand how a team that wouldn't give Cody Ross an appropriate salary would give Nunez(sic) anything at all!

I respectfully disagree on the Nats, but can't fault the potential for a Philly disaster. I just think it happens next year when even their pitchers start to show white hair and receeding hairlines.

Flav C

The Cespedes event looked more like show-boating. There was something else behind this whole thing that we all don't know. Anyway,I'll go with Phillies, Fish, Nats, Braves, Mets. The Phillies still have a lot of depth to hang in there for the first 2 months while Howard, Utley, and Martinez recover. They have plenty of what is really important: pitching. The Nats have good pitching rotation, i just don't see them with power to score more runs than the adversaries on a regular basis. Their top of the order (their 1-2) is one of the worse in the NL as far as scoring runs. I like our chances, only IF (the IF again) JJ is healthy. Unfortunately the Fish doesn't have a 2nd ace that can keep the house in order if he is out. If healthy and having at least 30-31 starts, the Fish can win 70% of the games he starts. I think the Marlins will be on the race and will deal Yelich in the mid-season for a experimented reliever, someone that is used to a play-off race. With the exception of Bell and Choate, our relievers are young and with no such experience. We saw what happened with the Braves and their young relievers last year down the stretch: complete mental and physical melt down.

Stan M

Flav,
We agree on the final standings. In my opinion the Marlins would trade Coghlan or Gabby long before Yelich.As to a second ace. I'm going out on a limb. Zambrano is throwing at a speed that is reminicent of his better days. If...yes it's a fairly big if...he gets his control back, he could lead this staff in victories. And I don't think we should underestimate Sanchez. He's no #5 starter. Your comments about the bullpen are valid. Especially if JJ continues to be a 6 inning "ace". Nunez certainly isn't the answer. I don't understand why the Hopper was moved...and for what?

Stan M

Just curious. Would we all be treating the Braves so lightly if Bobby Cox was still the manager? I could see Francona there before too long.

richiej

i still think the front office goofed BIG TIME when they allowed Cody Ross to leave....for nothing!

Jerks

laurelbowie

Stan M,
IMHO, Freddie isn't the problem for the Braves. Their three best pitchers (Hanson, Hudson and Jurrjens) have all been nursing injuries and I have a feeling they're going to face the same kind of pitching nightmare that the Fish did last year. They do have Livan for backup, but sadly, it's time to stick a fork in our old friend. Atlanta doesn't have the bats to take them to the playoffs without solid pitching, no matter who's managing the team.

Stan M

LB,
Really! You mean a team that had a 99+ percentage of finishing in the playoffs but didn't is all the player's fault. You and I usually agree but on this one I must respectfully differ (as do many pundits). Gonzalez is over his head as he was with the Marlins. He blew out his bullpen and suffered the worst collapse in history. Will it carry over into this year? Why else are we all picking the Braves for a major letdown? If that great potential pitching staff implodes, will it be their collective fault? Or were the seeds for disaster sown last year by overuse, misuse and God knows what else in 2011?

Flav C

LB and Stan, the reason I am picking the Braves to fail this season is a bit simpler: Last season they played in a Division with one competitive team, the Phillies, and even then failed to make it. This year, there are 3 tough teams they will play with. They went 12-6 against the Fish and 9-9 against the Nats. I am sure the Braves will be in the loss column this year. And no way they will repeat going 6-1 against the SF Giants.

laurelbowie

It's great to be talking baseball again with intelligent,passionate fans who respect others' opinions and feel no need to sink to namecalling and rudeness.It's one of the most exciting times of the year because right now we have a five-way tie for first (or, as the killjoys would say, a five-way tie for last), and none of us really can foresee what will unfold during the season. Let's play ball!

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