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Noon Wed. Fins update; Struggling Stanton faces choice; Fins' Wallace speaks out; UM, Heat

Five quick Dolphins notes from Wednesday morning before we get to the buzz column:

1) The Dolphins cut Dan Carpenter. As expected, Caleb Sturgis wins the kicking job.

2) We hear OL Nate Garner had arthroscopic shoulder surgery and is expected to be out two to three weeks.

3) Was told Pat Devlin has an injury (not certain what it is; one associate mentioned an ankle) that could keep him out a week or two. That's why Aaron Corp was re-signed last night.

4) Ryan Tannehill looked very sharp in practice. Mike Wallace caught a beautiful 45-yard pass from Tannehill over Nolan Carroll and Kelcie McCray.

5) Joe Philbin said starters will play at least one quarter against Houston on Saturday.

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WEDNESDAY BUZZ COLUMN

The issue hangs over the Marlins’ head like threatening storm clouds. And no matter how much owner Jeffrey Loria tells his staff he wants to build around slumping Giancarlo Stanton, this ultimately will be beyond Loria’s control.

Loria would not allow his front office to consider trades involving Stanton the past few months; other teams were told not to even bother making offers. The Marlins privately say they will offer him a multiyear contract this offseason, one that would buy out his arbitration seasons (2014, 2015 and 2016) and at least a couple of years of free agency.

So would Stanton even consider signing here long-term, taking into account his dissatisfaction with last winter’s payroll purge and Marlins Park’s pitcher-friendly dimensions?

“I won’t think about it until it’s in front of me,” he said. “I’ve had zero thought or worry about that.”

He added: “You have plans already in your head” but declined to elaborate.

One Stanton associate would be surprised if he accepts a Marlins offer, though he might consider one that’s especially big.

Some Marlins people believe Stanton is inclined to sign with a team in his native California, but Loria at least wants to make the attempt to keep him, barring a change of heart. In 2008, Hanley Ramirez accepted a six-year, $72 million Marlins offer in this same situation –- before his first year of arbitration. Keeping Stanton likely would be more costly.

Stanton likes his teammates, respects manager Mike Redmond (“he’s done a good job -- does nothing crazy if we win or lose”) and enjoys South Florida.

But Braves second baseman Dan Uggla says what Stanton won’t: Stanton is a great talent but "to be special, you have to surround him with legitimate guys."

And with Logan Morrison the only other established quality hitter in the lineup, Stanton’s average has sunk to .238, well below his .265 career mark. He is averaging one homer every 21 at-bats, compared with one-per-15 in his career.

He entered Tuesday night’s game hitting .210 since the All-Star break and .191 with runners in scoring position. And this depicts how he is often being pitching around: According to fangraphs.com, only 37.6 percent of all pitches thrown to him have been inside the strike zone, compared to 42 last season.

He has hit better at home (.302, 10 homers) than on the road (.184, three homers), but he makes no secret of his distaste for Marlins Park’s roomy dimensions.

“This place is ridiculous,” he said during a recent homestand. “It shouldn’t be like this. You hit balls that would be 20 rows deep in the seats of other parks.”

Has he become used to it?

“I don’t think anyone ever will get used to hitting in this park completely, if you’re a power guy. Everyone that comes in and plays here -– it’s the first thing they bring up. It’s in everyone’s thoughts. [The issue is] who’s going to talk about it.”

Stanton said he felt it wasn’t his place last winter to express his concern to Loria or the front office. He’s not sure he will this winter, either. “It could come up,” he said. “It’s their decision.”

The Marlins declined to comment about Stanton’s ballpark opinions but previously said they need a larger sample size before making any decisions on the size of the field.

Stanton admits having five hitting coaches in three-plus seasons has been difficult. But he is a big fan of the interim hitting coach, John Pierson.

The Marlins already have accounted for Stanton’s 2014 salary (likely $6 million to $8 million) in their internal budget projections. If he turns down their multiyear offer, the question becomes how soon to trade him before he becomes a free agent in November 2016.

An official who spoke to the Marlins said they might hold onto him into next season even if he rejects their multiyear offer. But a trade would be inevitable in that scenario.

The Marlins typically look for pitching when trading prospects, but offense -– especially infielders and possibly a catcher –- are a far greater need now.

CHATTER

### Dolphins receiver Mike Wallace wants to make one thing very clear: Anyone who believes he’s only dangerous on deep balls is sadly mistaken.

“I score every single way you can score – handoffs, posts, slants… Every single route I’ve scored on,” he said Monday. “Last year, I only had seven catches over 20 yards. Those people must not watch our games. Must just see highlights.”

Wallace, by the way, added: “I’m always open.”

And this: “I want to be the best player in the league,… want to lead the league in everything I possibly can.”

### We hear Dolphins veterans have been thoroughly impressed by Dion Jordan –- from his work ethic to professionalism to enormous upside. “He’s surprised me -– his athleticism, his power for a skinny guy,” linebacker Philip Wheeler said.

Quarterback Matt Moore said: “He’s so big and fast – his length is so big that it’s hard to throw around him or over him. He has such an effect on the other 10 guys on defense. Even if he doesn’t make the sack, he puts other guys in position to.” (Update: Jordan missed his third straight practice Wednesday because of a shoulder injury.)

### Who has stood out as pass-rushers? Defensive coordinator Mark D’Onofrio said two: Tyriq McCord and freshman Al-Quadin Muhammad. “They’re our fastest guys off the edge.”… Freshman linebacker Jermaine Grace impressed UM coaches during Sunday's scrimmage.... Please see the last post for an item on UM's new defensive line additions. Even before those additions, running back Eduardo Clements said it's clear that UM's defensive line is "much better" than last year.

### ESPN’s Kirk Herbstreit said off air Tuesday that UM is a top-20 caliber team and “people don’t have a full appreciation for how good Stephen Morris is. If they can improve as much as we anticipate on the defensive side,… Miami can be a team to look out for in the ACC.”

### UM's Clements said one problem last season was “people crying about” how many reps they got in practice. Those players are gone “and no one here thinks it’s all about me,” he said. “[Golden] said, ‘If you are going to cry about reps, you might as well leave.’” 

### Content with its roster for now, the Heat passed on forward Al Harrington, who was closing in on a deal with the Wizards on Tuesday afternoon. With 13 players holding guaranteed contracts, the Heat has felt no urgency to make additional moves, beyond inviting young players (such as Campbell's Eric Griffin) to training camp.   

Comments

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Longtime Phinfan

Re: Sports Buzz column

Would be nice if you started a new paragraph with
a BOLD heading such as: Dolphins - Heat - Marlins -
NFL - etc. I'll be reading along and, all of a sudden,
the names don't look familiar. Just a suggestion....
Go Dolphins...and thanks,

Coral Gables'81

Sale the Marlins now.

Mr Titman

All of So.Fla. agrees with you CG81. Loria is the worst owner in any sport. He beats out Daniel Snyder,Jim Irsay,and Jerry Jones for ego and not caring about fans or players. Asolute disgusting human being. Our only hope is that he does sale the Marlins and we never see or hear of him ever again! I will be very surprized if "Mike" Stanton re-signs.

CutlerRidge Laz

Thanks again Barry and as I stated the four times I was on QAM yesterday we are tailgating before Canes Fest this weekend. Come on and enjoy our Canes & Cons happy hour.

Go'canes!

Reality Bites

I would welcome the news if Loria were to SELL the Marlins, they've had enough sales already. But I don't opine about the Marlins otherwise.

Wallace and Jordan should be just fine. The problem with the Fins starts with the OL, the question mark at RB and whether T Hill is really the man, I believe he is. The OL and RB are questionable though.

The canes are so good right now they sure look like a top 20 team. Too bad it's only summer and only a scrimmage against themselves, same old.

Go Heat!

Sy Gazunt

Stanton should make Schnoria pay thru the nose to stay here

Marios

Only way to sign Stanton is if Loria sells the team.

The trade to Toronto turns out was a good deal those guys are now stealing the Blue Jay's money and we got really good prospects, it was however a stab in the back.

Back to the old blueprint of young guys with low salaries who finish middle of the pack.

Gameday Streaker

So, the Marlins star player hates playing in the new ballpark, and fans still aren't coming to games even with a new ballpark. And it cost taxpayers a fortune. But it did increase the value of Loria's business holding. So all is well, right?

HeHateMe

Yeah?

Reality Bites

Canes & Cons happy hour?

Good one Laz.

g8r h8r

Re: Sports Buzz column

Agree with Longtime Phinfan, would be great if there were headings to make it easier to save time by skipping over the Dolphins and Marlins info and get right to the meaningful stuff on the Heat and 'Canes.

As always great work Barry. Thank you!!

Keepin it real always

Just saw that Cane s Jalen Grimble is leaving/or left the team in Yahoo.I watched him in a video last week and he looked super slow and fat.Don t know how well he s been playing in practice or where he was on the depth chart.I sure heard basically NOTHING about him this season.Not sure what happened with him as he seemed like he d be a good one.Maybe he got frustrated with the Defensive Coordinator?If so....welcome to the club.THAT Coordinator sure better have his defense show marked improvement.

Judgement Day - 9/7/13

Loria is a joke. We could have had an infield with Cabrera, Ramirez and Uggla. You also know that we're going to trade Stanton for a couple of middle of the road prospects and he will end up going somewhere and becoming a hall of famer like Cabrera.

H. W. Hypinga

Loria and Samson should sell,take the money and drop dead.

Marios

Carpenter for hire.
Back to kicking cowdung in Montana.

Actually was a victim of his own success, probably will get picked up by someone, he wasn't too bad but 2.5 mill for a kicker won't work in new salary cap sit.

Bk1cane

I wonder if the marlins will be cursed by the land they play on??? I sure do miss the OB.

Maria

Thank you Barry for your hard work. Much appreciated.

Go Canes!

green

Who investigates the Miami herald for bribery ...
How else do U explain splashing f-i-u-don't-matter on the front page of the website day after day ...
Front & center ....
The paper tells us they matter most when they matter least ...
U see ...
These undeserving cockroaches have done nothing to deserve disproportionate coverage besides e-bomb the rag's brain trust & pick a fight with the schoolyard bully ...
Something's rotten at 1 herald plaza ....

BIGGER FISH TO FRY

IMAWriter

Sure hope Dion Jordan plays a bit, but more importantly keeps his eyes glued to J J Watt. Yes, Watt is a different player, more a power rusher, but he's maybe the best right now, followed by our own Cam Wake.

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