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Autographed Bryce Harper bat part of prank; Oviedo's future clouded

    CHICAGO -- It was a mob scene inside the Marlins dugout a moment ago at Wrigley Field, where Ozzie Guillen, Carlos Zambrano and Mark Buehrle each conducted separate press conferences on their first visit to the Windy City since leaving for South Florida.

     "I don't need a standing ovation," Guillen said. "But I don't expect anything bad."

     Zambrano said it felt "weird" returning to Wrigley, where he spent his first 11 big-league seasons as a Chicago Cub.

      ___________________

      Guillen received a bat signed by Bryce Harper following Sunday's game in Miami. Turns out it was a prank orchestrated by either players or coaches on the Nationals stemming from Friday's pine tar incident.

       "It was funny," Guillen said. "I've got a few friends on (the Nationals). All those guys are trying to make fun of me."

       Guillen said he found out later that someone on the Nationals asked Harper to sign a bat, which he did. Later, the perpetrator wrote an inscription that read: "To my hero, Ozzie. I love you." For added effect, a generous amount of pine tar was applied to the bat barrel before it was sent over to the Marlins clubhouse.

        "I don't have anything against the kid," Guillen said. "I think this kid is going to be good for the game. We need players like him that play the game right. I think what he did was maybe because he was a kid. I hope he learned from that. His manager (Davey Johnson) said I was trying to intimidate him. I wasn't. That was the last thing that went through my mind."

        __________________

        Larry Beinfest, the Marlins' president of baseball operations, is not optimistic that Juan Carlos Oviedo will pitch this season.

        Oviedo's comeback plans have been put on hold due to an elbow injury that could result in Tommy John surgery.

        "This is not looking good like he'll pitch for us this season," Beinfest said. "We have to move ahead with the thought that he's not going to (pitch)."

        Oviedo might not pitch for the Marlins again. Beinfest said the pitcher will become eligible for free agency following the season, whether or not he pitches.

        "I feel terrible for him," Beinfest said. "I think he handled his mistake (over the false identity issue) well. I feel bad for us in that we're not -- at least in the short term, and maybe not at all -- receiving any production from him. It's a sad situation all the way around."

        __________________

        Guillen said that he is not platooning outfielders Justin Ruggiano and Greg Dobbs, and has no problem with starting Ruggiano against right-handed pitching.

        "I don't platoon anyone," Guillen said.

        Ruggiano did not start the final two games of the Nationals series against right-handers Stephen Strasburg and Edwin Jackson even though Ruggiano is hitting .346 against righties this season and .385 overall.

         "You hit .390, you're not a platoon player," Guillen said. "I just benched him those two days because I don't want to screw up his head. Facing Strasburg and then Jackson, I didn't want him to come out of his swing."

      ____________________

      LINEUPS:

      Marlins: 1. Jose Reyes, ss; 2. Emilio Bonifacio, cf; 3. Carlos Lee, 1b; 4. Justin Ruggiano, rf; 5. Hanley Ramirez, 3b; 6. Austin Kearns, lf; 7. Omar Infante, 2b; 8. John Buck, c; 9. Anibal Sanchez, p

      Cubs: 1. David DeJesus, cf; 2. Starlin Castro, ss; 3. Anthony Rizzo, 1b; 4. Alfonso Soriano, lf; 5. Bryan LaHair, rf; 6. Geovany Soto, c; 7. Darwin Barney, 2b; 8. Luis Valbuena, 3b; 9. Travis Wood, p.

Comments

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Alex

Nice win tonight. IF the Marlins sweep the Cubs they can get to .500! Maybe all is NOT lost! I would like nothing more than to have this team suddenly turn it around and make all my predictions about them turn out to be WRONG. It would be great if Reyes and Hanley got hot, and all our underachievers started ACHIEVING! Hey, I can HOPE, can't I? I don't like my baseball season being OVER in July! Some hi-lights from tonight's game:

Ruggiano went 0-3. Look for him to be benched again soon. Ozzie is a LIAR; he has no faith that the kid will continue hitting and he DOES want to platoon him.

Hanley hit another HR. He always does well against BAD TEAMS and BAD PITCHERS. The Cubs are just what the doctor ordered for him. Where are the Astros; he might get over .260 if he plays them!

Lou, aka L.O.B, one of my favorite posters here, was 100% correct when he said on the radio that this team has no FIRE, no enthusiasm. I blame Ozzie for that.

Carlos Lee is becoming a nice pick up. All he needs is guys ON BASE in front of him. Hear that, Reyes?

Kearns got a hit, but he's another defensive horror show in the outfield. Ozzie is incapable of filling out a line up card that does not have at least one washed up old guy or an infielder playing the outfield.

Infante went deep. Maybe he will get hot again. We can only hope!

Go FISH! SWEEP the Cubs!

Alex

There are some guys here that are good guys and know their baseball. To name a few, laurebowie, I believe his name is, plus flagstaffmarlin, and a couple other guys who do not belong to any CLIQUE but speak their mind HONESTLY about this team. If I didn't name you, my apologies. You know who you are. And you who aren't, know THAT as well.

Alex

I am hoping we go on a winning streak, get over .500 at the Trade Deadline. Nothing would make me happier than watching Loria SQUIRM when that happens, because if it DOES happen, he will have to be a BUYER at the Trade Deadline. And I do not believe that he wants to spend a DIME at the deadline, so he is hoping for the team NOT to make a run. Attendance is dropping and it is not what they expected, so why would he want to spend any money? But if we are OVER .500, he will not have a choice! I doubt that he will be able to get away with DOING NOTHING at the Deadline like he did in 2008 and 2009 when we had good teams playing over .500 ball. If he does that THIS YEAR, he will hear it in the media! GO FISH!!!

Leo Orestes Barberie

Sorry!! Maybe just 1 post a night.

I need some clarification. You mean a guy gets in trouble and can't leave his own country and also must explain himself to U.S. State Department and then he gets hurt and does not throw a pitch all year and this results in getting a year of vesting towards arbitration. Do I have that right? If I'm correct, I can only guess what the reaction would be by a significant segment of our population to that kind of a UNION deal??? Once again, by any sane measure these guys are independent contractors and why the owners ever allowed it to go this far is unbelievable. If they would have just 1!!! time not caved they would not have arbitration totally distorting the meaning of an honest day's pay for an honest day's work. In MLB you can get paid for sitting out a year and the moronic---Well they are actually really smart in many diverse areas-- capitualating owners are totally responsible.

flagstafffishfan

It was a good game tonight. Gaudin scared the heck out of me. Carlos Lee can hit w/RISP plain and simple. I'm sure there is no way the Marlins will go after him but I like what I see. I really liked Ozzie having his bullpen ready if Bell got into trouble, it only took him half the year. Keep it going and let's hope JJ has a game like Anibel did tonight....did anyone notice how Anibel was lighting up the gun tonight?

laurelbowie

LOB,
Either you're misreading this or I am. I think they're saying JCO will be eligible for free agency, not arbitration. He has more than six years service, even without pitching this year, and has no contract for next year.

Glags

I'm going to proclaim that I was the first one to call for the Carlos Lee trade. I'm not crazy enough to look for previous posts but it sounds about right and therefore it is so. You're welcome.

Since up to this point that trade has worked out I'm calling for the team to go get another bullpen arm. Houston Street has got silly numbers in San Diego. The bullpen we have is very incosistent and I think he can come and shorten the game with Bell, Cishek and Street (not any particular order). The only deterring factor may be that his contract is not in line with the fish's business practice but anything is possible I suppose.

For the record Street has 33 SO in 25 innings with a 1.08 ERA. That stat at least for me squashes any concerns about him being a product of Petco.

This is of course is in the event that as the previous poster suggested they sweep the cubs and actually get to .500.

Should they get to .500 after this series, where do they go.

Leo Orestes Barberie

Laurel, Sorry. I meant free agency. So the year Leo had is what puts him over the hump and makes him eligible. This must count as his 6th year of service. It's kinda like contracting to build a house, you then have trouble getting a permit and then you have really nasty weather for 3 months and you say to the guy--Well, I fulfilled my year's work.

J Sprewell

Oviedo is done. Should be thrown out of league for false representation.
God showed you the way and gave you what you deserved.
Just take your money and busted elbow & run !

Stan M

The way JCO was being promoted by the FO and to a lesser extent on the air, it left the impression with me that his return was being thought of as a very suitable substitute for making a trade. His return would be the same as a trade. In my opinion he was only a satisfactory closer when compared to Bell. He, too, blew too many games and seemed to be stubborn in the overuse of his changup. At 6 million per year, he was dreadfully overpriced for the work he had performed and he would have had to show great improvemrnt before he should have been brought back anyway. His loss is minimal at best. What it does, again in my opinion, is call the FO's hand concerning a late season move. However, buying would be meaningless if this team doesn't show significant improvement in the next few days. Otherwise let's see what we've got for next year. Hope Sanibel's performance forces the FO to lean toward resigning. LB, and LOB, you both made the "list". I am devasated and consumed with jealousy but will still hang in there for the souls in purgatory while I try to improve my deportment.

Stan M

There is an article coming from Twins City ESPN, that the Marlin's FO is disgusted and could go into selling mode. According to the article, Hanley, Bell, and JJ could be on the block. 2/3 of that sounds great! But JJ? His value isn't high enough at this time to bring back worthy prospects. No, No, No!

Glags

Stan I wouldn't put too much stock into anything they report. ESPN is the sports equivalent to TMZ and those other entertainment news channels. I heard Buster Olney yesterday say that the FO is willing to hear offers for Stanton though a trade is unlikely. Give me a friggin break!!! Say what you will about this FO but they couldn't possibly be that irresponsible or stupid.

I agree that they might sell if they stink it up the next couple of weeks but they aren't going to unload players because they really don't have any to unload other than the four impending free agents that'll draw the most interest. Sanchez, Lee, Choate and maybe Zambrano.

Trading Omar would be ridiculous because he's cheap (which fits this FO) and won't net anything valuable in return. It's not like we have the hot 2B prospect waiting in the minors. They still need bodies on the field.

Stan M

Glags, I also thought the JJ rumor nonsense but that it was worth passing on. Read Stanton rumor as well and ignored it. Hope they keep Choate and Zambrano, but I'd trade Infante "if" there was a significant return, and only then. The rumors about Nolasco and Sanchez scare me, only because of this team's parsimony. No rational FO would trade them. Too bad we didn't get Cepedes. He's starting to look like exactly what we need. However, some background suggests that he is another Hanley in disposition.

Alex

Have been diagnosed with TOURETTES SYNDROME....IIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIII....AW SHITTTTT,AW SHITTTTTT.....AW SHITTTTT....DAMMMMMMMIT !!!!!!!!!

Stan M

And that's only the half of it!

laurelbowie

I'd like to see the Fish give Quintero a try here, now that he's under contract. He was hitting .232 when KC released him, which ain't no great shakes but still 40 points or so above our starter.
Guess if Infante goes, Solano would be the guy to take his place. He's looked solid everywhere they've put him and he can hit a little. Made a great turn on that big double play last night from the shortstop spot. In fact, Lee, Solano and Choate all had to play that perfectly to make it work just when it looked like a seven-run lead might evaporate into thin air.
Lee really is showing his new teammates how a real baseball player plays the game. I hope they noticed how the old guy tagged and got into scoring position on a fly ball to right field — while most of the hotshots on that team would have been standing around with their fingers up their butts. To me, that was more impressive than the grand slam and it helped set the tone for the game.

Flav C

LB, i share the same opinion regarding the tag play by Lee. To me, that changed the tone of the game, putting himself in scoring position for Kearns.
Interesting to notice: Marlins leads the NL in DPs turned. This is not a small feat considering we used to have one of the worse infields when Hanley was SS and Uggla 2B. It comes to show the importance of having guys like Reyes and Infante.
I'd think twice before sending Infante anywhere. This is the type of guy that can do all the small things defensively and offensively.

laurelbowie

Really can't believe the Marlins optioned Webb to make room for Mujica when Gaudin has been beyond terrible. If you can't bring a reliever in late in the game with a seven-run lead against the Cubbies, when are you ever going to use him? Just release the guy and move on. I really am shocked — but I guess I shouldn't be too shocked at anything this team does.

laurelbowie

Ken Rosenthal says the Red Sox have reached out to the Marlins about a trade for Carl Crawford, and bleacherreport.com suggests the Fish could take Crawford in return for Hanley or Reyes. What do you guys think?

flagstafffishfan

I'd give em Hanley for Crawford and a prospect.

Stan M

I think...goodbye Hanley. Gaudin should have been the one to go. What are they thinking. Regarding Lee, except for one botches pickoff throw, Lee has in no way disgraced himself around 1st base either.

Flav, regarding double plays, there are two truths to consider. One is that the DP combo has done well. The other is that the pitchers put to damn many men on 1B.

I must confess to a hidden prejudice that I didn't realize was there. When looking for a good clubhouse "presence", I invariably looked for a white player. This team has a huge Latin presense, and maybe Lee is just the presence that this particular team needs.

Logan

Doggone right get rid of Hanky and brin Carl in, I'll do this trade in a heart beat.

BraMan

Stan M, there are some good clubhouse black players as well no need to be prejudice.

flagstafffishfan

Stan I agree that Lee has a presence that has been needed. I would love to see them sign him after the season but I doubt it. We're going to go into full blown rebuilding...again...mode.

Stan M

Just read Rosenthal's article. Hanley for Crawford (and $ of course) would be an ideal trade for the Marlins. The possibility of including Bell makes the deal even more appealing. However, no way should we include A. Sanchez. The Marlins need to do something drastic and here it is. I'd do it even if Crawford does need TJ surgery. So what, we aren't going anywhere this year anyway. Crawford would be ideal for our ballpark and give us another speedster. Suddenly we are like The Cardinals of Whitey Herzog. Go for it, FO...now!

flagstafffishfan

Love the WhiteyBall reference!! I agree the FO should go for it. It could allow for this team to not have to disintegrate completely. What are your thoughts on Reyes though? If the Sox want Reyes and Bell but not Hanley would you go for it?

Stan M

Yes, BraMan. Don Bayloris a perfect example. However, this team has a much more Latin flavor than Black at this time.

Flags...,
I fear that Lee is a perfect DH so he will probably return to the AL. But if not, I would love to see him stay as well.

Stan M

Flags...,
No, I wouldn't include Reyes for three major reasons. One it would return Hanley to SS and that would cost us runs on defense. Two, Reyes, although not yet performing as he will, is a positive influence while Hanley is...well Hanley is Hanley. Lastly, one of the major reasons to make the trade is to become an even more speed dominant team. That doesn't occur if Reyes is gone.

I have to disagree with you just a little on a comment above. I don't think the FO would dare to go into a full blown rebuilding mode. Retooling, yes. Changes are necessary and perhaps that it what you meant anyway.

Glags

The red sox are not going to eat whatever is left on that contract for an under performing 3B/SS. They have enough drama. Bobby V could not handle a diva like Hanley. He'd probably make it worse.

This is just another case of smut reporting and is shameful.

Stan M

Glags,
Did you read the article? It's on Fox sports. Ken Rosenthal is a pretty reliable reporter. Maybe it won't happen, but I'm more excited than I've been in a long time about our Marlins. Keep the faith; you never know.

Glags

I read the article after I posted above. I'm all about rumors, shoot I have the MLB trade rumors app on my phone which is where I first read it around 1pm. But this is just bad reporting. Le Batard has said that reporters fish for information and will write the one quote they think will make headlines. Anyone that's followed this team knows they would never inherit that kind of contract. I just thought it to be ridiculous, absurd and just bad reporting.

I agree that he's pretty reliable but he and Olney must've been smoking something.

Marlin Fan

As far as trades , other than Hanley( dont think there will be any takers on Bell) , the Marlins shouldn't make moves , just to make moves . I don't see anyone that they could get this year that will be a cornerstone for the future . I also don't think one or two players will magically turn it around for them this year and propel them into the post season( the ultimate goal). What happens in the case of acquiring players for one year and seeing them walk next year, while giving up good young players ?? I really think the Marlins have a good young nucleus to be successful, just maybe not this year. Save for Ozzie and Bell , we could be in the wildcard hunt right now.

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