The Marlins, who avoided the injury bug the first half of the season, haven't been as fortunate the second half. Having already lost starting pitcher Wei-Yin Chen and first baseman Justin Bour to injuries, the Marlins were dealt another blow on Tuesday when closer A.J. Ramos was placed on the 15-day disabled list with a fractured finger on his pitching hand.
Suddenly, a bullpen that looked capable all not long ago appears vulnerable. Not only is Ramos out, but David Phelps has moved into a starting role to shore up the rotation. The Marlins have a ninth-inning fallback in Fernando Rodney. But the sequence of late-inning set-up relievers becomes more suspect.
It's uncertain how much time Ramos is likely to miss. His DL assignment is retroactive to Saturday, the day he last pitched. But a broken finger is obviously not a good thing. Ramos jammed his right hand during the previous home stand and tried pitching through it -- to mixed results. Though he never offered it as an excuse, it was clearly a factor in his Wrigley Field meltdown last week.
The Marlins on Tuesday made a couple of moves to a bullpen that was taxed during Monday's 14-inning marathon. Hunter Cervenka, who was acquired from the Braves over the weekend, was optioned to Triple A New Orleans after making only two relief appearances. The Marlins recalled right-handed rookie Austin Brice from Double A Jacksonville and selected the contract of veteran left-hander Chris Narveson, who was on the club at the start of the season.