Welcome back. Our blog server was targeted once again in some sort of cyber attack and was down for much of the day. But it appears to be up and running again, so let's see if we can't freshen up the site a bit with some of the day's happenings.
First, the Miguel Tejada signing. If you're like myself, you were probably wondering what in the world the Marlins were doing in striking a deal with a A) Soon-to-be 40-year-old infielder whose prime years are well behind him; B) A guy who is presently serving the second-longest drug suspension in MLB history; 3) A player who plays at positions where there is no current need.
So I asked Marty Scott, the Marlins' vice president of player development, to explain the signing, and here's what I got:
"The purpose is to provide a broader base of solutions to us in case we have injuries," Scott said Monday. "We're only a game-and-a-half out of first, and I don't want something to happen at the big-league level where we don't have someone we know who can come up and do the job, not have someone in place where we have to scramble for a week or so and fall further behind. I want to be able to hit the ground running. He's kind of a safety valve."
Scott said Tejada, who turns 40 on Sunday, impressed -- with the bat, as well as with the glove -- in private workouts for the Marlins.
So about that 105-game suspension for amphetamines. Tejada still has time to serve and would not be eligible to suit up again in a big-league uniform until after June 9. In the meantime, though, he can take part in extended spring training, and Scott said the Marlins received some slack from the league and union in terms of allowing Tejada a 10-day rehab session (without pay) at a club lower than the Triple A level.
Thus, Scott said, "On May 27 I can send him to Jacksonville if I want and rehab him for 10 days" before promoting him to Triple A New Orleans. The earliest he could play for the Marlins is June 10. For now, he will spend time at extended spring training in Jupiter.
Triple A New Orleans is listing "To be announced" as its starting pitcher on Thursday. Expect that person to be Andrew Heaney.
After proving himself to be more than capable at Double A Jacksonville, the Marlins' top pitching prospect is being strongly considered by the organization's front office for a promotion.
If all goes well in New Orleans, Heaney could be with the Marlins as early as June, depending on both need and the left-hander's performance at Triple A.
Read more here in the New Orleans Advocate.
By the way, Alex Sanabia delivered five scoreless innings Monday night for the Zephyrs. Sanabia recently returned to the Marlins organization after getting released by the Diamondbacks.
In case you haven't heard by now, the Marlins released Carlos Marmol on Monday. The veteran reliever was designated for assignment last week.
And you can check out my daily story for the paper here on Jose Fernandez and the impact his absence is likely to have on the team.