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1 posts from March 29, 2014

March 29, 2014

Derek Jeter to Jose Fernandez: "You can never be satisfied"

TAMPA -- Jose Fernandez received a bit of sage baseball advice during a chance encounter with Derek Jeter on Friday, and the words from the Yankees legend stuck with the Marlins' 21-year-old pitching ace.

"He told me, 'You can never be satisfied,'" Fernandez said. "Sometimes I think you feel like, 'OK, I'm in the big leagues.' And sometimes I think you sit back a little bit (and take things for granted)."

Since Fernandez didn't make the Panama trip with the Marlins when they faced the Yankees, Friday was the first time he had the opportunity to meet the shortstop, who is retiring after this season -- his 20th in the majors. Fernandez -- last year's N.L. Rookie of the Year -- said he approached Jeter -- the 1996 A.L. Rookie of the Year -- like a nervous kid.

"I don't want to bother you," Fernandez said he told Jeter. "I asked him for a ball. And he was like, 'Never be satisfied.' Like I said, from what I see, you think you're in the big leagues. You know, you're already on the team. I don't want to get hurt, and you lose that competitiveness. I can't lose that."

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Adeiny Hechavarria, who has not played since Monday due to tightness in his groin, was in the starting lineup Saturday for the Marlins' final spring training game. Manager Mike Redmond said he wants to see how Hechavarria looks first before revealing his Opening Night lineup.

With Rafael Furcal headed to the disabled list, Christian Yelich will lead off. Redmond said that means Hechavarria could bat second, followed by Giancarlo Stanton and Jeff Baker, who will be the Opening Day second baseman against Colorado lefty Jorge De La Rosa.

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The Marlins will make a couple of moves on Sunday to make room on their 40-man roster for reserve outfielder Reed Johnson and long reliever Kevin Slowey. One of those openings will be created when outfielder Brian Bogusevic is designated for assignment.

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The Marlins are assured of their first winning record in spring training since 2008 when they take an 18-12-2 mark into this afternoon's Grapefruit League finale against the Bronx Bombers at George A. Steinbrenner Field.

The Marlins trail the Tampa Bay Rays by 1 1/2 games in the Grapefruit League Standings, and own a 1/2-game lead over the Pirates and Giants for the best spring record by a National League team.