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"Big year" for Ricky Nolasco

     JUPITER -- It was only two months ago that Ricky Nolasco sent word through his agent that, in the aftermath of the Marlins' roster purge, he wished to be traded. But Nolasco didn't go anywhere and is no longer discussing the matter.

      "I'm moving forward," Nolasco said this morning. "Anything that's happened in the past isn't going to be talked about anymore."

      The Marlins have no intention of trading Nolasco now. But given that Nolasco is making $11.5 million this season and is in the final year of his contract, he's a prime candidate to be moved before the July 31 trade deadline. And because Nolasco is pitching for his next contract, you can be certain he'll be giving it his all for the Marlins even if he would prefer to be somewhere else.

       "This is a big year," Nolasco acknowledged. "Obviously, every year is a big year. But this is a big year."

       It's all but official that the Marlins' all-time wins leader will take the mound for them on Opening Day in Washington, facing Stephen Strasburg and the Nationals. But don't count on him being around in September for the season finale.

        _______________

        Juan Pierre was aghast when Rob Brantly couldn't remember the name of the pitcher he collected his first major league hit against. After all, it was only last August when it happened. What player doesn't remember the details -- pitcher, ballpark, date, etc. -- from his first hit?

        Well, Brantly is the odd bird who didn't, and Pierre sent him home Monday with a "homework assignment": identifying the pitcher. Brantly did his homework, showing up Tuesday with the pitcher's name: Rockies hurler Adam Ottavino.

Comments

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Flav C.

Tough call for Ricky.

As the ace of the team , he will match-up with the ace of the opposing teams more times than ever. This will possibly mean less of run-support than he's ever had in the past. And having a high run-support has been the key reason why Ricky has more wins than former Marlins pitchers.

On a second thought, considering the lineup the Marlins has for 2013, I guess the run-support will be very low, regardless of who the opposing pitcher is.

estrauss@steinway.com

The pitcher that has the best spring should be the opening day pitcher. Last Year Nolasco was one of the worst starting pitchers. Why not give Turner, Evaldo, or Fenanadez a chance. Why should we start now by announcing Ricky as the opening day pitcher. LET HIM EARN IT!!!!!!

Dionysus Thelxinoe

Nolasco may not be commenting about his status but it goes without saying that he will be auditioning for an opportunity to pitch for a pennant contender elsewhere before the end of the season, thus showcasing his talents and landing a big contract somewhere.

Dionysus Thelxinoe

BTW, ST performance matters little with respect to veterans. It's a time for pitchers to develop or experiment with their pitches, develop rhythm and control, and more than anything, avoid injury. ST performance is more meaningful for unproven minor leaguers and over-the-hill veterans, which pretty much describes almost all of the MAAArlins roster.

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