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Marlins hope to take advantage of tired, sleepy Nats

Gio Gonzalez is happy to be home.

Gio GonzalezHe's just not so happy he and his Nationals teammates are back at the ballpark so early Monday. First-place Washington spent Sunday night in Atlanta, where Gonzalez tossed seven strong innings and helped them sweep the Braves.

But as nice as it was to fly to South Florida 2.5 games up on the Mets, and 3.5 games up on the third-place Marlins in the National League East, the Nats do feel a little sleep deprived.

"I'm excited to be home," Gonzalez said. "But man am I tired. We're all just trying to stay awake."

The 26-year old All-Star left-hander, who grew up in Hialeah and whom the Marlins made a push to get from Oakland this off-season, is now tied for the major league lead in wins with seven after beating ERA-leader Brandon Beachy Sunday. Gonzalez, however, is all by himself atop the league in strikeouts with 79. His ERA (2.04) ranks third in the NL.

The Marlins made their pitch to get Gonzalez from the A's this off-season. In the end, they just didn't have as much to offer as the Nationals, who gave up three talented prospects to pry him loose. Gonzalez said as nice as it would have been to pitch for the Marlins and in front of his friends and family every fifth day, it probably works out better for his wallet that he doesn't.

"In the beginning it sounded amazing -- new ballpark, my home team," Gonzalez said. "And then when you start coming down to it, Washington was probably the best thing that could happen to me. 

"I can come home and say 'Hi' and then go away. I can't imagine having to get all these tickets every time I pitched."

Although Gonzalez won't be pitching against the Marlins in any of their meetings over the next three days that hasn't stopped friends and family from bombarding the him with ticket requests for the next couple days.

"I've been getting non-stop text messages and phone calls from everybody," said Gonzalez, who was part of two state championship teams at Hialeah High before leaving for and graduating from Monsignor Pace in 2004. "My mom is like, 'You've got a big pass list. You've got over 100 tickets.' I'm like, 'Hey, I don't know who they think they are, but 100 tickets is expensive man.'"

Gonzalez said he's left about 10 tickets each day for close relatives, and the Marlins are assisting him by allowing other family members and friends to buy group tickets at a discounted rate.

"I have to thank the Marlins -- they've provided them with good seats under my name," Gonzalez said. "Those fans that were going to pay so much more, they got a discount. 

"One guy alone told me he was going to buy 50 tickets. Another member of the family bought tickets. Then, I've got my church from Hialeah coming. My old high school baseball team, too. My friends I grew up with. My brother's friends. I'm just excited. I know something cool is going to happen. Miami is going to welcome their Hialeah kid home."

If the Nationals rotation stays in order and there aren't any rainouts over the next month and a half, Gonzalez would be in-line to pitch at Marlins Park right after the All-Star Break, July 15th.

> Veteran outfielder Austin Kearns, on the 15-day disabled list since May 23rd with a right hamstring strain, believes he'll be ready to go once he's eligible to be reinstated June 7th.

"I think that's a possibility," Kearns said Monday. "We'll see when we start doing more. I've been riding bike, walking on the treadmill, took swings off the tee. It seems like it is getting better each day."

Kearns injured his hamstring while scoring from first base on a Giancarlo Stanton double last Tuesday against the Rockies. He's batting .375 with three home runs and nine RBIs in 48 at-bats in 22 games.

> It might not be long before we see Gaby Sanchez again.

The former All-Star first baseman has produced a hit in all eight games he's played in since being demoted to Triple A New Orleans on May 19th. Sanchez went into Monday's game hitting .346 with a home run and four RBI. He's walked eight times and also has an on base percentage of .514.  

Sanchez is eligible to be brought back up on Wednesday -- Gaby Sanchez t-shirt day at Marlins Park.

MONDAY'S LINEUPS

> Nationals (29-18): 1. Steve Lombardozzi LF, 2. Bryce Harper RF, 3. Ryan Zimmerman 3B, 4. Adam LaRoche 1B, 5. Ian Desmond SS, 6. Danny Espinosa 2B, 7. Rick Ankiel CF, 8. Carlos Maldonado C, 9. Ryan Zimmerman P.

> Marlins (26-22): 1. Jose Reyes SS, 2. Omar Infante 2B, 3. Hanley Ramirez 3B, 4. Giancarlo Stanton RF, 5. Logan Morrison 1B, 6. Bryan Petersen CF, 7. John Buck C, 8. Chris Coghlan LF, 9. Carlos Zambrano P.

Comments

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We Stink

Nationals don't seem sleepy. Marlins, on the other hand, seem hung over and apathetic. This is the Carlos Zambrano Cubs fans came to know and hate. Two straight awful outings now. This team will finish in last place, make no mistake. Samson, Loria and Beinfest -- the Three Stooges. Thanks a lot, jerks!

andy

keep on playing buck jerks

Glags

I agree this team cannot afford to loose to the Nats but you can't say a team stinks when theyve won as much as they have in May. Now the fact that the Nats and the Mets continue winning is more indicative of the Marlins position in the standings. Not because this team stinks.

?

They dont stink, they're average. Lets see how they do in the next 30 games against above .500 teams. Win one,lose one,win two,lose two, etc.

Baeball Stats Inc.

If it wasnt for Stanton ,the Marlins would have a losing record. Once he cools off and/or the other teams dont pitch to him ,the Marlins are losers.

Glags

If it wasn't for a crappy April they would be in first place. Are we being obvious today?

Baeball Stats Inc.

Go to PredictionMachine.com...Marlins predicted for 3rd place,missing play-offs at 85-77. Are we being a total homer kool-aid drinking Marlins fan Today? Or always?

Jaylee

We Stink,
You certainly do. How could anybody in their right mind consider this an "awful outing" by Zambrano. Clearly, they don't make you take an IQ test before allowing you to post on this site. You also clearly don't have to know anything about baseball. Guys like you make Snookie look like Einstein.

Glags

I'm always a homer. Did your prediction machine tell you that the Nationals we're going to be in first place or that the Mets were going to play as good as they have been or a better example would be the O's. Where does the machine have them finishing. The one thing that everyone's been right about so far is that AL and NL east were going to be tough.

Petey

WoW..Lomo the Great showing signs of life. Any kind of luck he will be hitting his lifetime MLB average of .255 by the 4th of July.

No Homer

Homer= Head Up Ass

Flav C

Reyes gave a clinic on base-running in the 7th. He basically manufactured that by himself.

Heywood Jablowme

jaylee..Baseball whores like you make snooky look like the Virgin Mary

laurelbowie

Glags,
I'm a homer, too. There are really only two types of posters here — the "homers" who root for the Marlins and who try, at least occasionally, to engage in some thoughtful discussion, and the name-callers like No Homer who really have nothing adult to say and should be ignored.
Of course, even homers are allowed to criticize the team when it's warranted, in the same way that loving parents get after their kids when they futz things up. Thank God for homers, I say.
And Flav C, I agree that Reyes' performance in the 7th was a thing of beauty. He's starting to look like the sparkplug the Marlins were expecting all along.

the Nursing Home Crew

laurelbowie...isnt it past your bedtime? dont forget your metamucil.Say Hi to Methuselah. Start the morphine drip. Happy Dreams ,Gramps.

Alex

Gee, isn't it funny how Lomo is starting to hit again now that they have finally given up on him in Left Field and put him back at his NATURAL POSTION, 1st base? And isn't it funny that Coghlan is playing better now that he's back in Left where he had success in 2009 after they almost ruined his career by moving him to CF? The Marlins Front Office is still a BIG JOKE. Cheap as can be, which is why we got Bell instead of Papelbon, and also why we constantly put kids to play positions that they never played before in life.

We got rid of Cody Ross and all our Center Fielders so we stuck Coghlan there who immediately hurt his shoulder and proved he doesn't have the ARM to play CF, as teams ran wild on him stretching singles into doubles. Coghlan's struggles in CF led to his not being able to hit, same as Lomo's struggles in Left affected HIS hitting. Anyone who has EVER played baseball knows that if a guy is struggling defensively it often affects his hitting, ESPECIALLY with young players. But the Cheap Marlins Front Office doesn't care! If you can play ball, they will stick you in any position, regardless if you NEVER played that position in your life. NO OTHER ORGANIZATION DOES STUPID, RIDICULOUS THINGS LIKE THAT.

I love the Marlins TEAM, but man, I have a lot of contempt for Samson and Loria and the Front Office.

Everybody in Fl  north of Miami

good reasons to root against the Marlins and hope they lose every game.

Alex

Still a lot of MORONS posting here I see. Yes, Stanton has been hitting well, but Hanley is also starting to hit and so is Lomo, now that he is back where he belongs, 1st base. Ones Reyes gets going this team will do better offensively.

What is carrying the Marlins is excellent starting pitching, regardless of what IDIOTS like "I Stink" say. The starters' ERA is among the best in baseball.

The worst part of the team is John Buck. Why is he still playing? Simple! The CHEAP Marlins Front Office doesn't want to admit that they got snookered into signing this BUM. But that was THEIR fault! Good catchers are getting between 10-15 million a year. They signed Buck for 6 Million. You get what you PAY FOR!

Alex

"good reasons to root against the Marlins and hope they lose every game."

Posted by: Everybody in Fl north of Miami

Yeah, what reasons are those? Because you suffered a severe a brain injury years ago doesn't count as a good reason for ANYTHING but your STUPIDITY.

laurelbowie

Alex,
I've been saying the same thing for a couple of years now (without the capital letters) — that forcing young guys to play unfamiliar positions screws with their heads and messes up their hitting. And look what they did with Solano. After two major league games, they shoved him into left field where he had never played before. Just idiotic.

Glags

I keep telling myself that they could've gotten Madson. They did alright.

Baseball Nation

Keep up the good basball blog talk ,all 5 of you Marlins fans here.

john

how long will we put up with bucks bat. just play hayes. buck is lost out there.

messin with Sasquatch/Buck

Marlins are searching for the Sasquatch in the beef jerky commercials to take Buck's place.

Flav C

I can't believe some of the things i read here.
"Put kids to play position they never played before". Chris Coghlan played 3B at Mississippi AND lots of games as outfielder. CF included. And while in the minors, even though he played most games as a 2B(which was already different from his college position) he played 20% of his games as outfielder (mostly as CF). And guess what: he never had an error as an OF but was just an average infielder. So, to say he never played that position before is a big stretch. He was very well versed on that.
Logan was supposed to the the 1B to replace Cantu when he was struggling. But he had a injury that required surgery and the Marlins opted for calling up Gaby Sanchez. So, stop saying this BS that "it is the FO's fault bla bla bla". When he was finally called up was because Coghlan had that stupid injury (the shaving cream pie)and, since Logan had played almost 30 games as LF in the minors, they gave him a chance as an OF.

Flav C

Besides, LoMo batted .283 in his rookie year AND he was playing LF .
Last year, he was batting .300 until mid-June AND he was playing LF.
In April this season he was batting .300+ AND he was playing LF.
Not being in his original position has nothing to do with him not performing. Zero. Nada.
You can ask several other good players that moved position in their carrers. You can start with COnine, who was an infielder in the minors and moved to be an OF in the major league.

So, going back to Lomo, maybe, just maybe, his knee is getting better, as the so-called FO had projected it to be better by June?
Maybe that's why both LoMo and Stanton have improved their performance, right?
Or do you all prefer to think that the hitting coach has anything to do with the evolution of these players?

I guess we keep running out of excuses for bad performances: hitting coach, knee, out of position, etc...

.

no excuses they're not that good

Alex

Wow, Flav, never before have I heard such ridiculous defenses of undefensible moves by the Front Office. Are you an employee or a pal of ownership? LOL!

1) I can't even believe that we are discussing this! IT IS A TERRIBLE IDEA TO TAKE KIDS WHO NEVER (Or Hardly Ever) PLAYED A POSITION, AND THEN, AT THE MAJOR LEAGUE LEVEL, TELL THEM THEY ARE GOING TO PLAY THAT POSITION! Nobody does crazy stuff like that except the Marlins! Nobody! There are usually VERY GOOD REASONS why guys play a certain position, and those reasons QUICKLY become very obvious!

2) Lomo was so OBVIOUSLY not a left fielder that it was actually funny. He was a statue out there. You say he was injured, eh? How much did having to play Left Field, a position he was completely unsuited for, affect THAT? Funny how Lomo started having all these injuries during the time he played Left Field and suddenly had to do all this running around, and funny how he will probably stay healthy from here on in now that he's BACK AT HIS NATURAL POSITION. And Funny too that now that he's getting more comfortable at 1st Base, his hitting is coming around.

3)Coghlan absolutely was ambushed upon arriving here and told he was playing the OF, but to his credit he didn't play that bad in LF his rookie year (going by Fielding Bible stats, not his Fielding percentage).Be that as it may, the NEXT YEAR he REALLY GOT SCREWED by the Front Office when they stuck him in Center Field because they got rid of Cody Ross and Maybin and suddenly they had no CF-er! Coghlan's arm in Center Field is TERRIBLE and no surprise, he came up with a sore shoulder soon afterwards.

4) There are VERY GOOD REASONS announcers like Tommy Hutton say things like this:

"To Hanley's credit, he hasn't allowed his struggles at bat to affect his play defensively".

The reason Hutton said that is because VERY OFTEN PLAYERS DO LET THEIR STRUGGLES IN ONE ASPECT OF THE GAME TO AFFECT THE REST OF THEIR GAME! This is ESPECIALLY true of YOUNG PLAYERS, who unlike veterans are not able to separate the various parts of their game. Guys like Lomo and Coghlan, for example.

Alex

I apologize for calling your replies "ridiculous", Flav. I just was taken aback to see someone defending what the Front Office does, which is constantly jerry-rigging this team. I mean look at the state of this out field! So far we have had a 1st baseman in Left Field (Lomo), a Pinch hitting specialist (Dobbs), a converted infielder (Coghlan), another Pinch hitting specialist (Kearns, who is no longer capable of playing the OF regularly because of injuries, and a bunch of minor league guys like Peterson & Mattison.

The outfield has been a mess ever since the Front Office kicked Cody Ross to the curb (a bad move) and traded away Maybin (a good move) leaving themselves with no Center Fielders. Other teams go out and get a player if they need one, but not our Front Office! We look around the locker room and see if anybody is available that we can stick in that position. Solano was the newest victim; he actually did ok.

What I have a problem with is how the Front Office handles these situations when they need a guy to play a position. Taking young kids who are just glad to be in The Show and putting them in positions AT THE MAJOR LEAGUE LEVEL that they never (or hardly ever) played before is just CRAZY. I couldn't believe you would defend that. But I apologize for calling it "ridiculous".

Frisaro&Friends@ Marlins/Mlbcom

Another retarded long winded post by the officially banned by MLB.com mental case,now using the fake name Alex. They finally let you out of the strait-jacket and let you near a computer again. Nice capital letters asswipe. Wont be long before Clark will get tired of your abusive rants and personal attacks and kicks you to the curb again. Still doing the thorazine suffle? See ya,num-nuts.

Flav C

Alex, i stand by my comments. I'm not defending any FO. I am giving data, which is more valuable than any words.
I never questioned if Logan or Coghlan were good outfielders (since we are at that, Coghlan holds his own at the OF). As I said before, Logan is a horrible outfielder and just average 1B.

Now, would it have been better to have them at the position they've played originally in the minors? Yes.
Was there a place for them in their original positions in the major leagues when they were called up? No.
So, what do you do with Coghlan if you were the FO? His original position was 2B. In 2009, you would have replaced Uggla with him? And now? Would you replace Infante with him?
As I said, LoMo was playing for the Suns when he had been called up to be the 1B, replacing Cantu. But he got hurt. He had surgery in his thumb (maybe twitting). Because of that, they called Gaby to replace Cantu at 1B and he actually did very well when he was called up. That is called fair professional competition and Gaby beat LoMo at that. Just like LoMo might be gaining his position back now from Gaby.

Moving positions had absolutely nothing to do with their hitting. Both players thrived and had amazing hitting numbers while they were playing as Outfielders. They went thru the same hot streaks and slumps. Just like everybody else.

I just gave the example of Conine (since he is closer to Marlins fans) as a player who played infiel as a minor and had to move to OF when he was called up. I guess we could say he did pretty well.
If needed I can give you at least 25 more well known players that had to move from their original positions in the minors to a new position in the major leagues and did very well.

Flav C

By the way, Alex, if you were here long enough in this board, you would know my opinion about the Marlins FO in several areas. Not agreeing with your opinion doesn't necessarily mean the other person is a "paid employee" of the Marlins.

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