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SI profiles Stanton; Fernandez debuts; Yelich drives in 7

      Sports Illustrated features Giancarlo Stanton in a four-page spread this week (LeBron James is on the cover, so Miamians can drool all over the issue). The piece is written by Albert Chen:


      Before games opposing players and coaches linger on the field just to watch Stanton take batting practice. One day in Philadelphia, Phillies manager Charlie Manuel asked (former manager Edwin) Rodriguez if he could stand behind home plate to watch the prodigy hit. As Stanton launched bomb after bomb, Manuel just shook his head in silence, and afterward he said to Rodriguez, "I've never seen anything like this."

      Keep in mind, Manuel has been eye-balling the Phillies' big basher, Ryan Howard, for years.

      Another excerpt, in Chen's own words:

      Here is the player to bring back the magic and the thrill of the home run. Here is perhaps the first great slugger of the poststeroid era.


      Jose Fernandez made his debut for Single A Jupiter earlier tonight and allowed four earned runs on five hits over five innings. Fernandez, who was promoted from Single A Greensboro after going 7-0 with a 1.59 ERA, whiffed four and also threw a wild pitch. Fernandez was the Marlins' first-round draft pick last year.

      Yelich But the big star for the Hammerheads at Roger Dean Stadium was another of the organization's top prospects, outfielder Christian Yelich. Yelich went 4 for 5 with a pair of homers, including a grand slam, and 7 RBI.

      Yelich, who was the Marlins' first round pick in 2010, is hitting .290 with nine homers and 28 RBI for the Hammerheads.