JUPITER -- Given the dearth of regulars involved in the Marlins/Red Sox spring showdown (I would imagine the sell-out crowd at Roger Dean Stadium will be quite dismayed when they see the lineups for both teams), I wandered out to the back fields to check out Anibal Sanchez, Randy Choate, Logan Morrison and Giancarlo Stanton.
Those four Marlins were getting their work in the controlled setting of minor-league scrimmages involving Triple A and Double A players. Neither Stanton nor Morrison, who are dealing with right knee injuries, played in the field. But each was given a handful of at bats, the highlight being Stanton's long blast off Sanchez.
Stanton, as well as Morrison, were under orders not to run out hits. But Stanton trotted around the bases after his home run ball, which easily cleared the fence in center before disappearing into a stand of trees while still in flight. That prompted Sanchez to remark -- jokingly -- "Now you can run" to Stanton as he was rounding first.
Morrison didn't provide any such fireworks and said afterward that his timing was off but maintained his stance that if there are no setbacks, he'll be ready to go Opening Day.
Choate was the most imprressive of all. He retired the three hitters he faced on eight pitches, all of them strikes. Choate is scheduled to pitch Monday in Lakeland.
Sanchez went four innings, throwing 53 pitches, and said he's on track to take his spot in the rotation.
Here are today's lineups:
Marlins: 1. Emilio Bonifacio, cf; 2. Chris Coghlan, lf; 3. Gaby Sanchez, 1b; 4. John Buck, c; 5. Austin Kearns, rf; 6. Donnie Murphy, 3b; 7. Donovan Solano, 2b; 8. Nick Green, ss; 9. Wade LeBlanc, p.
Red Sox: 1. Jose Iglesias, ss; 2. Pedro Ciriaco, 2b; 3. Cody Ross, lf; 4. David Ortiz, dh; 5. Ryan Lavarnaway, c; 6. Ryan Sweeney, rf; 7. Jason Repko, cf; 8. Lars Anderson, 1b; 9. Nate Spears, 3b. Pitching: Felix Doubrant.