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Carlos Marmol to make spring debut; Marlins bullpen battles wide open

JUPITER -- The Marlins and manager Mike Redmond will be looking for some clarity to an extremely muddled bullpen picture when Carlos Marmol makes his spring debut this afternoon. Marmol's first outing for the Marlins was delayed due to his return to the Dominican Republic to sort out visa issues.

It's hard to envision any scenario in which Marmol doesn't make the team.

But, outside of Steve Cishek, A.J. Ramos and Mike Dunn, the rest of the bullpen picture is unclear.

"We have a bunch of guys fighting for those spots," Redmond said. "We're looking for guys to step up. It's going to be an interesting battle to see who can be most consistent and earn it."

Redmond said he was impressed with Henry Rodriguez's first outing Saturday when the hard-throwing, but erratic, right-hander struck out three in one inning of work.

"From what I saw yesterday -- and I know it's only one outing -- but it was pretty impressive," Redmond said. "He's got an arm. To have a guy coming out of there with 98 (mph) against some right-handed hitters would be pretty nice."

Redmond was more guarded in his comments when asked about Carter Capps, the hard-throwing right-hander the Marlins acquired from Seattle in the Logan Morrison trade. Redmond said Capps is "doing OK."

"He's only been pitching for a few years," Redmond said. "We just need to keep getting him out there and get him comfortable on the mound, and get his innings."

There are essentially a slew of contenders for three spots: a long man, a right-hander and another lefty.

"We lost (Ryan) Webb and we lost (Chad) Qualls, and we need guys to step up and fill those innings," Redmond said. "We've got to replace those innings."

Kevin Slowey looked sharp in his two spring appearance and has re-emerged as a leading candidate for the long spot. The Marlins also turn to bullpen help from among the handful of pitchers who are presently vying for starting rotation spots, including Brad Hand and Tom Koehler.

Others who figure to be in the mix include: Arquimedes Caminero, Dan Jennings, Chaz Roe, Josh Spence and Chris Hatcher.

"These guys have got to earn it," Redmond said. "For me, every outing is big for guys. We have so many pitchers, and we're trying to get a look at so many different guys. Honestly, any time they get the ball it's important. There's just not enough innings out there for guys to kind of ease into it. I want to see what you got. So if guys are holding back for something, it's probably not the time to hold back."