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34 posts from April 2014

April 23, 2014

Marlins recall Carter Capps from Triple A to take Caminero's spot in bullpen

ATLANTA -- Carter Capps, the player the Marlins acquired in the Logan Morrison trade with Seattle, was recalled from Triple A New Orleans Wednesday morning to replace Arquimedes Caminero's vacated spot in the bullpen.

Capps struggled early on this spring as the Marlins were adjusting his delivery, adding a bit of a turn to it to provide more balance. He was sent down to the minors at the start of the season to work on it. 

He did well, going 0-1 with a 1.64 ERA in seven appearances for New Orleans. He had 17 strikeouts and just six walks in 11 innings of relief work. 

Capps has a power arm. According to Fangraphs, his average career fastball velocity is 96.4 miles per hour.

"I'm trying to get a little more use out of my legs, like I used to pitch," Capps said back in March. "When I went to Seattle, I changed some things around. I'm trying to get back to pitching the way I used to pitch."

April 22, 2014

Dempster becomes latest former Marlin to join MLB Network; Dietrich says he's just in defensive slump

In case you haven't noticed, there's a quite a former Marlins sharing their opinions on TV these days.

Ryan Dempster will be the next one. He's been hired by the MLB Network as an analyst and will make his debut on TV Wednesday. 

Dempster is the fifth former Marlins player to become an analyst for the network, joining Mike Lowell, Cliff Floyd, Kevin Millar and Al Leiter. Except for Leiter, four were teammates of Marlins manager Mike Redmond when he was with the team as a player from 1998 to 2004.

Other Marlins on TV who are part of the FoxSports broadcasts are Carl Pavano and Preston Wilson. Redmond said he thinks Dempster will be great on TV because he's funny.

"Those guys took the easy road instead of coaching," Redmond quipped Tuesday. "Now they can sit up there and second guess me. I love it."

> Although Redmond suggested Monday Dietrich's defensive struggles might be related to the ground ball in spring training which broke his nose, Dietrich says he's just in a defensive slump.

Dietrich, hitting .290 with three homers and nine RBI, is on the bench for the fourth game in a row Tuesday in part because of his struggles on defense. He has a team-leading four errors in 47 chances. Last season, he made just two errors in 258 chances, but hit just .214 in 57 games.

"I played great defense for this team last year and I'm confident really on the defensive side," Dietrich said. "I know I'm helping the team offensively. I'm just looking every day to help this team win. Whether its off the bench or playing everyday at second -- you know you want to play every day and have a chance. I think I'm doing that."

Said infield coach Perry Hill: "He's a good worker and a tough kid. He'll come out of this. He'll be fine." 

> Even though Christian Yelich and Marcell Ozuna have been very productive at the top of the lineup, Redmond said he still hasn't decided what he'll do when Rafael Furcal (hamstring) returns from the disabled list. Furcal signed a $3.5 million deal to bat leadoff and play second for the Marlins in 2014.

"I haven't really thought about it yet because we're still waiting for that day [when Furcal returns] to happen," Redmond said. "It definitely  will be a [tough] decision to make with Yelich leading off and hitting the ball well too. But we'll figure that out when that day comes.

"[It's a good problem to have]. Last year I spent about an hour and a half a day on that lineup trying to piece that together. Now, I spend about 10 minutes. If it takes me 15 minutes when he comes back then I'm fine with that."


> Marlins (9-11): 1. Christian Yelich LF, 2. Marcell Ozuna CF, 3. Giancarlo Stanton RF, 4. Casey McGehee 3B, 5. Jarrod Saltalamacchia C, 6. Garrett Jones 1B, 7. Adeiny Hechavarria SS, 8. Donovan Solano 2B, 9. Jose Fernandez RHP.

> Braves (13-6): 1. Jason Heyward RF, 2. B.J. Upton CF, 3. Freddie Freeman 1B, 4. Justin Upton LF, 5. Chris Johnson 3B, 6. Dan Uggla 2B, 7. Evan Gattis C, 8. Andrelton Simmons SS, 9. Alex Wood LHP.

April 21, 2014

Marlins Reed Johnson on base-running confusion: "I feel terrible -- cost us the game."

ATLANTA -- Reed Johnson spent quite a few years here at Turner Field with the Braves. But in the ninth inning Monday night, the veteran Marlins outfielder looked a little lost on the base paths. 

With nobody out and Johnson standing at second base, Adeiny Hechavarria at first, and Atlanta closer Craig Kimbrel on the mound, Derek Dietrich sent a rocket shot into the gap in left field. Instead of racing for home, Johnson's first instinct was to run back to second. The hesitation slowed Hechavarria down, and eventually cost the Marlins the go-ahead run in the ninth when Kimbrel came back to strike out Jeff Baker, Christian Yelich and Marcell Ozuna.

"I feel terrible -- cost us the game right there," Johnson said. "If we score a run, we're in a totally different situation. Cishek comes in and it's probably game over. Just did not get a good read.

"I knew the outfield was playing deep in that situation, ball goes off the bat and the same time I look pretty silly if I don't tag up and advance in that situation as well. That's kind of what I was more concerned with. But if I had to do it over again obviously I would just take off in that situation. And Hech probably gets sent right there. Maybe he doesn't."

Johnson said he didn't even see how close Hechavarria actually got to him on the basepaths. For a moment as both ran to third, it looked like the Marlins shortstop was about two strides away.

"I didn't even see him, didn't know where he was. I was just picking up the outfielder," Johnson said. "It was directly over my head. I knew they were playing deep from checking the outfield. Unfortunately you look at it on replay and it was clearly over his head. I wish I would have gotten a better read. It would have been a different result.

"When you're in the infield you know the ball's hit good. But it's not the same angle from different parts of the field when it's hit directly over your head. I knew it was hit good. I just wish I would have gotten a better read. It probably would be a different result."

The Marlins of course still blew a golden opportunity after that when Kimbrel struckout the next three batters he face.

"At the end of the day we still had second and third with nobody out," skipper Mike Redmond said. "We had the middle of our order with one out. Like I said, if we're going to win games on the road we have to take advantage of opportunities and we didn't do that today. That's too bad because we really should have won that game."

April 19, 2014

Bunting Ozuna; Praising Stanton; Jacob Turner, Colin Moran, Rafael Furcal updates

The decision to have Marcell Ozuna bunting in Friday's ninth inning with no outs, runners at first and second, and Giancarlo Stanton in the on-deck circle raised more than a few eyebrows. Even the Marlins' broadcasters were questioning the move. After all, if Ozuna had been successful with the sacrifice, it would have left first base open and the Mariners surely would have walked Stanton -- as they did in two of his previous plate appearances.

So what were the Marlins thinking?

"Trying to get a couple of guys in scoring position," manager Mike Redmond said afterward. "The way we've been going, if he (Ozuna) swings we might ground into a double play. Who knows? I just wanted to get guys in scoring position."

Even if it meant taking the bat out of Stanton's hands?

"I still take my chances with the bases loaded and one out and the four hole hitter (Garrett Jones) up at the plate with a chance to win the ballgame," Redmond said in defense.

There's no question that Ozuna is a double play candidate. He's hit into two of the three double plays the Marlins have grounded into this season. But he's no bunter, either. It's not something he's been asked to do very often during his professional career. He had six sacrifice bunts in the minors and one last season with the Marlins. He's also been swinging a solid bat, and one could make the argument he stood a better chance of driving in a run with a hit than, say, Jones.

But Ozuna is also hitting .158 (3 for 19) with runners in scoring position while Jones has done slightly better in those situations (5 for 20, .250).

Still, in bunting Ozuna, Redmond was effectively willing to sacrifice his most dangerous hitter in Stanton. 

As it turned out, Stanton still got to the plate and won the game with a walk-off grand slam even after Ozuna bunted. Upon fielding Ozuna's bunt, the Mariners went for the force at third, where Reed Johnson was called out. But after reviewing the play, the call was overturned when it was determined Seattle third baseman Kyle Seager failed to maintain complete control of the ball.

But what if the out call had been upheld? The Marlins would have had runners at first and second with one out and Stanton at the plate. Think the Mariners would have pitched to him? Privately, a couple of players on the Marlins don't think so, pointing to the fact that as the play at third was being reviewed, Seattle manager Lloyd McClendon had gone to the mound to confer with reliever Yoervis Medina.

"I'm sure he was telling Medina to throw Stanton a couple of pitches down and away to see if he chases," one player said. "If he doesn't, then put him on."

McClendon all but admitted as much afterward, saying there was no way he wanted to give the hot-hitting Stanton any chance to beat him.

Once the call at third was overturned, McClendon had no choice.

"I knew this game was probably over with after the reversal," McClendon said.


McClendon had nothing but praise for Stanton after the slugger's grand slam left the Mariners walking off in defeat.

"He's a force," McClendon said. "His strike zone is getting better. He's probably a much more patient hitter now than when he first came into the league. Knowledge is power, and he's got knowledge. He knows the pitchers now. He knows how they're going to try to work him."

Redmond was also raving about Stanton, who leads the majors in RBI with 26 -- seven more than the next player on the list -- leads the N.L. in runs scored with 14, and is tied with three others for the league lead in home runs with six.

"This guy has had an unbelievable month," Redmond said. "Really it started for him in spring training. He came in ready to go. You could just see a new focus, a new energy and drive out of him. I think that's really carried over."

Specifically, Redmond said the most notable change from Stanton this season as compared to a year ago is his pitch selection.

"He's more aggressive at pitches that he knows that he can handle," Redmond said. "Pitches up in the zone, last year, maybe he took some of those pitches, whereas this year he seems to be right on them all the time. I think the key for him is to eliminate the balls down and away and in the dirt. Once he's able to do that, then watch out. I think teams are starting to see that now, where he's starting to lay off those pitches and as he continues to swing at balls in the strike zone, there's not limit as to how much damage this guy can do."

Redmond said Stanton is also making better adjustments within at bats. Example: his ninth-inning at bat Friday against Medina.

"Last night, he missed that first breaking ball he threw him and the second one he crushed it," Redmond said. "That shows you he's able to make in-game adjustments pitch by pitch. And usually when you see a hitter able to make adjustments pitch by pitch, that's a pretty good sign he's locked in."


The walk-off grand slam by Stanton was the fifth in Marlins history. The others: Bobby Bonilla (9/16/97 vs. Colorado), Dan Uggla (6/11/08 vs. Philadelphia), Stanton (5/13/12 vs. New York Mets) and Jeff Mathis (6/30/13 vs. San Diego).

According to Elias, Stanton is one of only two players to hit two walk-off grand slams before his 25th birthday. The other: former Marlins hitting coach Jim Presley. The major league record for most career walk-off grand slams is three and is shared by Alex Rodriguez, Cy Williams and Vern Stephens.

-- The Marlins have homered in nine consecutive games, the longest such streak since the team homered in nine straight from June 30-July 8, 2012. The franchise record for consecutive games with at least one home run is 14.

-- Christian Yelich takes a career-high 12-game hitting streak into tonight's game.


Jacob Turner will throw one more bullpen session Sunday before heading up to Jupiter to begin a rehab assignment for the Single A Hammerheads. Turner will make his first rehab start on Wednesday for Jupiter and throw anywhere from 50 to 55 pitches. He'll make one more rehab start after that before rejoining the Marlins' rotation.

"If all goes according to plan, it'll probably be the beginning of May," Turner said of his return.

-- Second baseman Rafael Furcal (hamstring) will continue his rehab assignment at Double A Jacksonville starting on Monday. Furcal has been seeing action at Jupiter.


Top prospect Colin Moran, who has yet to play this season due to a minor knee injury, will likely begin playing in extended spring games next week in Jupiter. The third baseman was the Marlins' first-round pick in last year's draft.


Tonight's lineups:

Marlins: 1. Christian Yelich 7; 2. Marcell Ozuna 8; 3. Giancarlo Stanton 9; 4. Casey McGehee 5; 5. Jarrod Saltalamacchia 2; 6. Jeff Baker 3; 7. Adeiny Hechavarria 6; 8. Donovan Solano 4; 9. Henderson Alvarez 1.

Mariners: 1. Abraham Almonte 8; 2. Brad Miller 6; 3. Robinson Cano 4; 4. Justin Smoak 3; 5. Michael Saunders 9; 6. Kyle Seager 5; 7. Dustin Ackley 7; 8. Mike Zunino 2; 9. Roenis Elias 1.


April 18, 2014

LoMo hopes to show Marlins they made a mistake trading him

Logan Morrison said it felt "a little weird" returning to Marlins Park for the first time since being traded to the Seattle Mariners. But he likes his new home and teammates, and hopes to show the Marlins they made a mistake by trading him.

"I hope that I prove that they did," Morrison said Friday before the Mariners opened a three-game interleague series against the Marlins. "It's not like I'm going out there with that in mind. But, if I prove that they did, then that means I'm playing well and helping my team win."

Morrison won't be playing in the series. After getting off to a slow start at the plate with Seattle, going 3 for 20 without a RBI, the Mariners placed him on the disabled list with a hamstring injury. But he made the trip to Miami anyway and looked forward to seeing his former teammates.

Morrison summed up his time with the Marlins this way: "Enjoyable. Exciting. A lot of ups and downs. Disappointing, as well. A lot of emotions happened within six or seven years. Getting called up to the big leagues. Getting to tell my parents I was going to be a big leaguer. The Marlins made that possible. I'm very thankful for the time I had here."


Jacob Turner (right shoulder sprain) threw a bullpen session on Friday. He'll do so again Sunday before heading up to Jupiter to make a rehab start sometime next week.

Turner said his shoulder "feels good -- feels totally 100 percent normal."



April 16, 2014

Stanton on pace for 54 HRs, 227 RBI in 2014; Slowey to start Sunday

Giancarlo Stanton earned himself $6.5 million in his first year of arbitration this past off-season.

It's hard to fathom what the Marlins are going to have to pay him if he keeps up his current pace.

After 15 games, the 24-year old former All-Star is hitting .317 with five homers, 12 runs scored and 21 RBI -- by far his best start to a season ever. The RBI total leads the majors.

At this rate, if he plays in all 162 games for the Marlins this season, Stanton will finish with 54 homers, 130 runs scored, 227 RBI and 20 stolen bases.

Of course, history has shown us Stanton has yet to get through a big league season completely healthy. He missed 85 combined games with injuries over the last two seasons after playing in 150 games in 2011. But a healthy Stanton sure is pretty scary to watch.

The first month of the season has usually been horrendous for Stanton. Between March and April in his first three full big league seasons (2011-2013), he combined to hit .236 with 27 RBI and six homers in 57 games. This season has obviously been different.

According to Fangraphs, Stanton is seeing more pitches in the strike zone (40.4 percent) compared to last season, when he finished second with the fewest strikes thrown to him (38.2 percent).

He's also being more aggressive than he was a year ago, swinging at 47.1 percent of the pitches thrown to him compared to 41.5. During his All-Star season of 2012, Stanton swung at 48.4 percent of the pitches thrown to him ,and saw 44.8 percent of those pitches thrown in the strike zone.


Skipper Mike Redmond said veteran right-hander Kevin Slowey will start Sunday's game against the Mariners. 

It might be the only time Slowey is needed in the rotation. The Marlins, off Thursday before opening a three-game series Friday at Marlins Park against the Seattle Mariners, have a day off between series next week in Atlanta and New York, and then another day of rest before they return home to face the Braves on April 29. 

Redmond said he and pitching coach Chuck Hernandez opted to not move Tuesday night winner Tom Koehler into Sunday's slot on five days rest because they wanted their staff to line up accordingly against the Braves next week and other teams down the road. Koehler is slated to start Monday night in Atlanta, followed by Jose Fernandez and Nathan Eovaldi.

By the time the Marlins get back from the road trip, right-hander Jacob Turner could be back from the disabled list. Turner, out with a strained right shoulder, played catch from 60 feet on Tuesday and played catch again Wednesday. Redmond said Turner will throw a bullpen Friday before being reevaluated.

Slowey went 1-6 with a 4.21 ERA in 14 starts for the Marlins last season. Redmond said left-hander Brad Hand, who had back-to-back starts that didn't make it past the fourth inning, will head back to the bullpen to serve as the long reliever.

> Redmond said he's hearing nothing but positive reports regarding second baseman Rafael Furcal, who is down on rehab assignment in Jupiter and isn't expected back until May 6th. "I've heard he's feeling great, doing good. He's running around really well. He's playing good defense. That part of it is very encouraging," Redmond said. 

> Stanton (21) and Casey McGehee (13) have combined to drive in 34 runs over the first 15 games of the season, the most RBI among any two teammates in the Majors. The duo has recorded the most combined RBI by a set of teammates over the first 15 games of any season in Marlins history, two better than Juan Encarnacio (17) and Miguel Cabrera (15) in 2005. The last set of teammates in the Majors to record 34+ RBI through the first 15 games of the season were Prince Fielder (19) and MIguel Cabrera (17) of Detroit, and John Buck (20) and David Wright (14) of the Mets, last season.


> Marlins (6-9): 1. Christian Yelich LF, 2. Marcell Ozuna CF, 3. Giancarlo Stanton RF, 4. Garrett Jones 1B, 5. Casey McGehee 3B, 6. Jarrod Saltalamacchia C, 7. Derek Dietrich 2B, 8. Adeiny Hechavarria SS, 9. Jose Fernandez RHP.

> Nationals (8-6): 1. Anthony Rendon 3B, 2. Bryce Haroer LF, 3. Jayson Werth RF, 4. Adam LaRoche 1B, 5. Ian Desmond SS, 6. Danny Espinosa 2B, 7. Nate McLouth CF, 8. Jose Lobaton C, 9. Tanner Roark RHP.

April 15, 2014

No bad blood between Marlins, Nationals after Tuesday night's dust-up

It looks like there won't be any retaliation or bad blood between the Marlins and Nationals after Tuesday night's little dust-up.

In the fourth inning of the Marlins 11-2 win which snapped an eight-game losing streak, Ian Desmond took exception to a Tom Koehler fastball that got a little too close for comfort.

Koehler said Desmond yelled to him 'throw the pitch over the plate.' Catcher Jarrod Saltalamacchia intervened and then had some words for Desmond before the benches and bullpens cleared and umpires got in the mix. Both teams received warnings and cooler heads eventually prevailed.

"I wasn't necessarily thinking he had intentions of hitting me," Desmond told Nats reporters. "You can drill me in the ribs, legs, whatever you want. But four or five times missing up around the hands and the head. I'm not claiming it to be on purpose but you gotta be able to control the ball. No big deal. It wasn't intended to escalate to what it did. But it was heat of the moment. It's tough sometimes.

"I meant what I was saying. This is how I feed my family. I'm not scared to get hit. I've been hit plenty of times and never said a word. Up around the hands and head, I just don't like that."

Koehler and skipper Mike Redmond said the Marlins were simply trying to establish the inside part of the plate.

"Guys tend to get upset when they get crowded," Koehler said. "It is our job as starters to make sure they know that is our piart of the plate. We have been beat inside too many times these past couple of series and that is because we haven’t established inside late in the game. You never want to get beat inside late in the game, and that’s what’s been happening because we haven’t been throwing those pitches in."

Said Saltalamacchia: "We're teammates. That's what it comes down to, I'm going to protect our guys. Regardless if it is the pitcher, the first baseman, Stanton or anybody. We're here for each other. We're family. We're going to protect each other. If you see somebody yelling or saying something towards your pitcher, you're going to step in the way."

Koehler said the issue was dead afterward. 

"I've known Jarrod for a long time – I wouldn't respect him if he didn't respond that way," Desmond said. "Like I said, it wasn't premeditated. It just came out. His reaction I'm sure wasn't premeditated either. This is baseball. We compete. Going forward, no hard feelings. This is the way the game goes sometimes."

Yelich, Stanton share laugh after near collision in outfield Monday night

Things obviously haven't been going well for the Marlins during this eight-game losing streak. 

But Monday night's 9-2 loss to the Nationals came awfully close to being much more painful for the Marlins had Christian Yelich not yielded the way to Giancarlo Stanton. The two nearly collided into each other in right-center field in the second inning sprinting after a Jayson Werth fly ball.

Stanton made the grab for the out and then smiled at Yelich, who decided at the last second self preservation was a smarter idea than crashing into his 6-6, 240-pound teammate.

"I heard him at the last second and saw out of the corner of my eye he wasn't stopping," said Yelich (6-3, 200). "So I kind of just peeled off. Self preservation -- otherwise I probably wouldn't be here today. I would have been out there still."

Yelich said Stanton joked with him after the game how everyone on the team would be wearing a C.Y. patch (Yelich's initials) on their uniform Tuesday had there been a head-on collision between the two.

"It was close," Yelich said. "We had a close one in spring training also. I've tempted fate a few times here. Hopefully it doesn't become a frequent thing. The good thing is you kind of hear him running when he gets close to you. It sounds like a horse. You can definitely tell he's coming."

Yelich, who returns to left field tonight with Marcell Ozuna back in the lineup, has only started six games in center field in the big leagues. Skipper Mike Redmond said he has no problem starting Yelich in center and that the ball Werth hit belonged to the center fielder.

"You always get a little bit nervous even though Yelly has played quite a bit of center field [in the minors]," Redmond said. "He hasn't played a lot of in the big leagues, but you know he can do it. Those are always things you worry about -- the communication in the outfield. But fortunately it didn't happen."

> Redmond said what he's seen from Stanton defensively and running the bases this season has been outstanding.

"He looks great. His jumps have been solid. Watching him run the bases he looks good, he looks healthy," Redmond said. "He looks really comfortable out there both offensively and defensively. He's feeling good. Now we have to get everything around it going. The pitching, better defense."

> Yelich heads into Tuesday night's game on a nine-game hitting streak. He's gone 14 for 39 (.359) since starting the season 2-for-14. Getting more familiar with the pitchers he's been facing helps, Yelich said. 

"When it wasn't going well I think I had good at-bats and it wasn't happening. Now it is," Yelich said. "I'm just finding holes. Baseball is funny like that."

He's also getting comfortable and speaking up more, sharing his assessment of what pitchers are doing and the quality of their pitches to teammates. That's something every lead-off hitter tries to do.

"Previously it was kind of tough for me to go back and tell a guy this is what he's doing tonight because he would say 'Hey man you've got two at-bats against him,'" Yelich said. "Obviously when you face guys more you kind of have a better idea of what their stuff looks like on their good and bad days, kind of what they're doing to you. You feel more comfortable letting the other guys in the dugout know this is what he's got going tonight and this is what he's doing, let's go get him. I'm starting to feel more comfortable doing that."

> Redmond said the Marlins still haven't decided what they're going to do with Brad Hand's spot in the rotation after his rough night Monday, but a decision could be announced Wednesday. Hand's starts have lasted 3 1/3 innings and 3 innings.

> Right-hander Jacob Turner, who played catch off flat ground for the first time since being placed on the disabled list, said his strained right shoulder has "definitely gotten better the last few days." He said his rehab could be sped up or slowed down depending on how feels.


> Nationals (8-5): 1. Anthony Rendon 3B, 2. Bryce Harper LF, 3. Jayson Weerth RF, 4. Adam LaRoche 1B, 5. Ian Desmond SS, 6. Danny Espinosa 2B, 7. Nate McLouth CF, 8. Sandy Leon C, 9. Stephen Strasburg RHP

> Marlins (5-9): 1. Christian Yelich LF, 2. Marcell Ozuna CF, 3. Giancarlo Stanton RF, 4. Garrett Jones 1B, 5. Casey McGehee 3B, 6. Jarrod Saltalamacchia C, 7. Derek Dietrich 2B, 8. Adeiny Hechavarria SS, 9. Tom Koehler RHP.

April 14, 2014

Marlins hoping to get closer Steve Cishek some work

Steve Cishek has the longest current consecutive saves streak in the majors at 31. 

The next time he pitches it might not be a save situation. 

Skipper Mike Redmond said Monday the team needs Cishek to get some work. He's pitched just once since the season-opening series against the Rockies -- last Friday night in Philly -- and has played spectator as other Marlins relievers have blown games with late home runs over the last week. 

"We've talked about it," Redmond said of getting Cishek into a game earlier for the sake of putting him  to work."It's crazy that we're in the same exact situation we were in last year. We've won more games this time around. It's tough. The first week we scored a lot of runs and didn't get a chance to use him and then last week we took a couple tough losses, tried getting him the ball. We might be in a situation here where we bring him in the eighth to get him some work, possibly throw a couple innings. We need him to pitch."

Cishek had three situations during last year's 100-loss season where he got six or more days worth of rest between appearances. So he's used to long layoffs.

"Everyday is just about going out there and hoping the team puts you in a situation to secure a win," Cishek said. "Our first six games we were raking. So even if we've been down I'm still trying to key in, get myself mentally ready to go in. It's still early. I feel like we have a good bullpen. I think we'll handle ourselves fine for the remainder of the year. We just had a little bad run."

> Second baseman Rafael Furcal, who spent last week in extended spring training, will begin his minor league assignment tonight in Single A Jupiter. Redmond said Furcal was going to play five innings.

"Our plan is for him to use all 21 [rehab] days," Redmond said. "Hopefully everything goes well and we go from there."

That means the earliest Furcal would be back with the big league team is May 6th when the Marlins take on the Mets at home. 

Redmond said Furcal would spend a week in Jupiter and then another in Double A Jacksonville before being reevaluated.

> Center fielder Marcell Ozuna isn't in the starting lineup Monday after fouling a ball off his foot Sunday. Redmond said Ozuna was on crutches Sunday night. But Ozuna took batting practice Monday and Redmond said he could be available to pinch-hit.

"It's one of those things where if its a bone bruise it can be a big deal, or it's just a matter where it flares up, swells up that night," Redmond said. "We'll see how he does today. We know he can't run 100 percent. We'll see if he can hit."

> Pitcher Jacob Turner, scratched from his last start and placed on the disabled list after injuring his throwing shoulder during batting practice last week, will begin playing catch on Tuesday. Redmond said Turner "reported that he feels much better than he has."

"We'll see how it responds to long toss," Redmond said. "Then we may start a plan for him."

> Utility infielder Ed Lucas was cleared to begin full baseball activities Monday. Lucas has been on the disabled list since he fractured his left hand during his final at-bat of the spring. He isn't expected back until next month.


> Nationals (7-5): 1. Anthony Rendon 3B, 2. Kevin Frandsden LF, 3. Jayson Werth RF, 4. Bryce Harper CF, 5. Ian Desmond SS, 6. Tyler Moore 1B, 7. Danny Espinosa 2B, 8. Sandy Leon C, 9. Jordan Zimmerman RHP.

> Marlins (5-8): 1. Christian Yelich CF, 2. Derek Dietrich 2B, 3. Giancarlo Stanton RF, 4. Garrett Jones 1B, 5. Casey McGehee 3B, 6. Jarrod Saltalamacchia C, 7. Reed Johnson LF, 8. Adeiny Hechavarria SS, 9. Brad Hand LHP.

April 13, 2014

Dietrich remains out of lineup with back spasms; Stanton HR video

PHILADELPHIA -- Second base has been a cursed position for the Marlins so far this season. With Rafael Furcal and utility infielder Ed Lucas already on the disabled list, the Marlins are now dealing with a minor back injury to Derek Dietrich.

Dietrich remained out of the lineup for a second straight day on Sunday with back spasms. Jeff Baker started at second. Dietrich doesn't think he'll be out for long.

"I'm feeling improvement today, so I'm available off the bench and will probably get back in there tomorrow," Dietrich said.

Dietrich said he felt "tightness" in his lower back "after I made that relay throw on Jimmy Rollins' triple (Friday). When I threw it in, my back started feeling a little weird. Then when I woke up, I was tight. We just erred on the side of caution, got a lot of treatment. I'm feeling a lot better today."

-- Adeiny Hechavarria has a 10-game hitting streak going at Citizens Bank Park. Hechavarria is also hitting a team-leading .383 (tied for 8th in the N.L.). For those reasons, and with Jeff Mathis handling the chores behind the plate, he's hitting in the No. 2 hole today when the Marlins try to avoid a sweep.

-- If you haven't had a chance to see it, here was Giancarlo Stanton's latest tape-measure job. The folks at ESPN Stats and Info calculated the distance at 469 ft. Stanton has now hit the longest and third-longest home runs this season in the majors.



Marlins: Yelich 7, Hechavarria 6, Stanton 9, Jones 3, McGehee 5, Ozuna 8, Baker 4, Mathis 2, Alvarez 1.

Phillies: Gwynn Jr. 8, Rollins 6, Utley 4, Howard 3, Byrd 9, Brown 7, Nieves 2, Asche 5, Kendrick 1.