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Ozzie Guillen signals return of Heath Bell as closer

     Ozzie Guillen gave every indication that Heath Bell is returning to the closer's role immediately. When asked Friday whether he intended to stick with Steve Cishek, Guillen replied: "No. Let's put Bell back to see what happens. That's his job, and I liked the way he threw the ball (in Houston)."

     Guillen backed off slightly when asked point blank if that meant for certain that Bell would move back into that role beginning with tonight's game against the Mets, saying it's possible he could send in someone else to pitch the ninth.

     But he continued by adding: "I want him there. I'm going to give him another shot. He deserves another shot. And I like what I see (from Bell) in Houston. And I think we should. He threw very well, kept the ball down, threw a lot of strikes, kept us in the game. He's our closer. Let's see what happens."

     Bell was relieved of the role after blowing his fourth save on May 4 in San Diego. On Wednesday, in what marked his only appearance since then, Bell pitched one inning of scoreless relief in what was a non-save situation, allowing a hit but needing only 10 pitches to record three outs.

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     Another new lineup twist for tonight's series opener against the Mets: Omar Infante is moving into the No. 2 spot in the order. Guillen mentioned the possibility of hitting Infante at No. 2 as far back as spring training.

      "I always liked the lineup with Infante batting second," Guillen said. "I think Infante is going to see more fastballs with Hanley hitting behind him."

      But Guillen said the move might not be permanent.

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     As expected, the Marlins made it official on Friday, optioning right-handed relievers Chris Hatcher and Sandy Rosario to Triple A New Orleans while calling up lefty reliever Mike Dunn and outfielder Kevin Mattison.

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    LINEUPS:

    Marlins: 1. Reyes, ss; 2. Infante, 2b; 3. Ramirez, 3b; 4. Morrison, lf; 5. Stanton, rf; 6. Sanchez, 1b; 7. Bonifacio, cf; 8. Buck, c; 9. Buehrle, p.

    Mets: 1. Torres, cf; 2. Murphy, 2b; 3. Wright, 3b; 4. Duda, rf; 5. Hairston, lf; 6. Davis, 1b; 7. Cedeno, ss; 8. Nickeas, c; 9. Santana, p.

    Umpires: HP -- Brian Gorman; 1B -- Tony Randazzo; 2B -- Todd Tichenor; 3B -- Larry Vanover.

 

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