July 07, 2013

Nolasco departs; Slowey to start Monday

Ricky Nolasco cleaned out his locker and said his goodbyes in the Marlins clubhouse Sunday morning.

The Marlins traded Nolasco to the Dodgers late Saturday night for minor-league pitchers Angel Sanchez, Steven Ames and Josh Wall.

“I'm going to miss these guys here more than I can say,” said Nolasco, who flew to Arizona Sunday to join the Dodgers for a key series that begins Monday against the Diamondbacks. “But they understand it is a business, and I'll see them in August. I made a lot of lifelong friends here. I'm never going to forget that.”

Although Nolasco felt bittersweet departing after eight seasons with the Marlins, he said he was excited to be able to pitch for his favorite team that he said he’d go watch in person around 15 times a year with his dad and brothers growing up.

“The phone has been non-stop,” Nolasco said. “Obviously, I've never dealt with anything like that to where the phone was just blowing up. Everybody is just excited, everybody from back home. Even people who don't have my number, on Twitter and stuff, obviously where I grew up, they're all excited to see this happen. It's just an exciting time.”

Nolasco’s teammates wished him well and were happy he ended up in a good situation with the trade.

“He’s going to the perfect spot for him,” Giancarlo Stanton said. “To be able to go to where you want without having a choice is always a little extra bonus. It won’t be a tough transition for him.”

Nolasco, who went 5-8 with a 3.85 ERA in 18 starts for the Marlins, doesn’t know when he will make his first start for the Dodgers, but it could come during a key series with the Diamondbacks – the team they trail by 4½ games in the National League West.

 “Obviously we’ll miss Ricky and what he brought to this team, and the leadership he brought to this team, but at the same time, too, we all kind of knew this was going to happen,” Marlins manager Mike Redmond said. “It’s good for Ricky that he’s going to go play for a good team, and a place where he wants to go. We wish him all the best.”


Nolasco’s trade meant Kevin Slowey’s return to the rotation for the time being. Slowey will start Monday in what would have been Nolasco’s spot against the Braves.

“[Redmond] talked to me about it yesterday,” Slowey said. “He knows the importance of preparation. I don’t think I’ll know until tomorrow but I’ll be as ready as I can be and the preparation will be there. It will be up to me to go and execute and do my best.”

Ames and Wall were assigned to New Orleans and Sanchez, the only starter of the group, was sent to Single-A Jupiter.

Slowey will likely remain the fifth starter in the rotation until at least the All-Star break. Marlins President of Baseball Operations Larry Beinfest said Saturday the team will use the second half to evaluate several potential starters including Tom Koehler (1-5, 4.70 ERA in 69 innings – 10 starts this season), who was recently sent to Triple-A to clear room for Henderson Alvarez, and prospects right-handers Anthony DeSclafani, Sam Dyson and lefties Adam Conley and Brian Flynn.

The Marlins also recalled pitcher Chris Hatcher from Triple-A New Orleans and transferred infielder Chris Valaika to the 60-day disabled list.

Starting lineups

Marlins (32-54): Pierre lf, Lucas 3b, Stanton rf, Morrison 1b, Ozuna cf, Dietrich 2b, Hechavarria ss, Mathis c, Fernandez p

Cardinals (52-34): Caprenter 2b, Beltran rf, Holliday lf, Craig 1b, Freese 3b, Jay cf, Cruz c, Kozma ss, Lynn p

July 04, 2013

Marlins send P Tom Koehler to NOLA, move OF Matt Diaz to 60-day DL


To make room for Henderson Alvarez on the roster and in the team’s starting rotation, the Marlins optioned rookie Tom Koehler to Triple-A New Orleans.

            Alvarez was expected to make his first start of the season Thursday after returning from the disabled list with shoulder inflammation.

            Koehler had been in the rotation since May 12 and made 10 starts going 1-5 with a 4.70 ERA. In his last start Tuesday, Koehler finished with a no-decision after pitching five innings and allowing three runs (two earned).

            Marlins manager Mike Redmond said Koehler would continue to start for the time being at New Orleans.

            “I thought Tom did a good job when he was here giving us some flexibility where he could start and come in out of the bullpen,” Redmond said. “He got some valuable experience. He threw the ball well and threw strikes and did all the things we talked about in Spring Training that he needed to do to be successful. He got some opportunities because guys were hurt, but now guys are coming back.”

            The Marlins also transferred outfielder Matt Diaz to the 60-day disabled list.

Tonight's lineups

Marlins (31-52): Ruggiano lf; Lucas 3b; Stanton rf; Morrison 1b; Ozuna cf; Dietrich 2b; Hechavarria ss; Mathis c; Alvarez p.

Braves (49-35): Simmons ss; Heyward rf; J. Upton lf; Freeman 1b; McCann c; Uggla 2b; B.J. Upton cf; C. Johnson 3b; Teheran p.

July 21, 2012

Hanley Ramirez out again; Ozzie Guillen thinks he could be out for a while

Hanley Ramirez’s infected right hand kept him out of the Marlins starting lineup for the second consecutive game.

Ramirez told reporters Saturday his status is “day-to-day.” Marlins manager Ozzie Guillen, however, used a different term to describe the timetable for his return from the injury that stemmed from his punching a cooling fan July 8 during a game in St. Louis.

“Hanley’s not day-to-day,” Guillen said. “It’s more like ‘2 days-by-2 days.’ His hand is a little bit better today, but just a little bit. I don’t see that much difference between yesterday than today.”

Guillen said it would be a “miracle” if Ramirez would return for Sunday’s finale against the Pirates, and said a return during the team’s upcoming six-game home stand is “optimistic.”

I don’t know [when he’ll be back],” Guillen said. “I know he still can’t grab a bat. They have to go by the doctors and trainers and see how he feels. The infection seems like it’s pretty strong. We’ve got to play by ear. If you want to, call it day to day, but to me it’s ‘check every two days.’ Maybe, we can have him pinch run, but that’s it.”

Ramirez pinch ran Friday in the ninth inning and stole a base. On Saturday afternoon, he kept his hands tucked away in a sweatshirt he wore in the team clubhouse.

“I’m just waiting for the swelling to go down,” Ramirez said. “I have probably about 50-60 percent use. I can still move my fingers. I just can’t grab the ball or the bat. Once I can do those things I’ll be back.”

Guillen said Friday he heard the infection was caused by Ramirez not properly taking his medication for the original injury. Ramirez said Saturday he forgot to take it only one day.

“[The infection] happened overnight,” Ramirez said. “It was pretty bad. I had pain and it kept swelling up. I’m taking the same pills. I think I got an alarm now every time so I don’t forget.”

Said Guillen: “Hanley’s a grown man. He should know how to do that, but he didn’t. And now it’s too late. Now, hopefully he will from now on.

“But I think the problem started in St. Louis when he did what he did. Players don’t realize it until after the fact. When [something like] that happens, you are hurting the ball club not just yourself and that’s what we’re dealing with right now.”

July 20, 2012

Hanley Ramirez out for Friday's game vs. Pirates

Marlins third baseman Hanley Ramirez’s moment of rage nearly two weeks ago in St. Louis caught up to him Friday, forcing him out of the team’s lineup, possibly for multiple games.

            Ramirez left PNC Park early Friday afternoon and visited a doctor in Pittsburgh to treat an infection that developed around the area on his right hand where he cut himself punching a cooling fan in the dugout during a game July 8th in St. Louis.

Ramirez received two stitches above his right ring finger when the injury occurred in the sixth inning of that game. He missed the remainder of that game, but returned immediately after the All-Star break.

“[Ramirez’s hand] looked pretty ugly and it was pretty sensitive,” Marlins manager Ozzie Guillen said. “I was a little worried about it. Hopefully, it will come out soon. You can’t play around with that stuff. We have to prevent it from becoming a big deal. That’s the kind of thing you have to be careful. You have to take the time to cure it and hopefully it’s right away.”

Guillen, however, was miffed by the apparent reason for the infection. Guillen said he heard it formed due to Ramirez not properly taking his prescribed antibiotics.

“How do you forget to take a pill the doctor tells you to take?” Guillen said. “Hopefully the doctor finds exactly the right pills and I will tell him open your mouth, like a baby, and put them in his mouth and make sure he takes his pills every night.”

Greg Dobbs took Ramirez’s place at third base and hit sixth Friday in the Marlins’ lineup. The Marlins said Ramirez returned to the park approximately an hour before the start of the game.

Emilio Bonifacio and Jose Reyes each said Ramirez was showing no ill effects from the injury recently during the series following the All-Star break against the Nationals and Cubs.

“[Emilio Bonifacio] and some of the other guys saw it, and said it was bad,” shortstop Jose Reyes said. “Hanley was good the past few days. He was playing with it fine.”

Ramirez, who has been the subject of trade rumors the past couple of days, has gone 6 for 26 since the All-Star break with two home runs, three RBI and has struck out 11 times.

April 12, 2012

Charles Barkley supports Ozzie Guillen

Saw an article in USA Today talking about a radio interview Thursday morning on The Dan Patrick Show, between host Patrick and former NBA star Charles Barkley.

Barkley said he has “reached out” to suspended Marlins manager Ozzie Guillen.

Barkley told Patrick he hadn’t spoken to Guillen, but as someone who had “made some stupid mistakes,” he understood what the Marlins manager, who served the second of a five-game suspension Thursday was going through.

“I don't condone what Ozzie said, but he's apologized,” Barkley told Patrick. “I reached out to him just to tell him to keep his head up.”

Barkley said he would have also reached out to recently-fired University of Arkansas football coach Bobby Petrino, too, if he knew him.

“When you are living in that storm, you think the world is going to end,” Barkley told Patrick. “It's easy for everybody to go crazy on you on radio and TV because everybody gets the God complex when they're on television and radio, thinking like they ain't never done anything wrong. Everybody is just God, judge and jury on you and just crucifies you.''


            The Phillies announced that former outfielder and University of Miami star Pat Burrell will officially retire next month. Burrell, who hit .257 with 251 homers and 827 RBI, will sign a one-day minor league contract and retire as a member of the Phillies.

June 13, 2008

Sunshine State SkySeries?

Stpete ST. PETERSBURG -- George Richards here getting ready to watch the Marlins take on Tampa Bay's Devil Rays (I know, I know) tonight from the Thunderdome on Florida's west coast.

Finally, these two teams meet up and there is some interest from outside Florida (or even these two metropolitan areas).

Yes, even Sports Illustrated is here to take in the Sunshine State Series -- or whatever the heck you want to call it.

Little bit of news to get to (the Panthers hired a new head coach BTW) but first the lineups. Will be back with some of the other stuff as we go on. As the Herald's hockey writer, the Panthers making such a big move has made today just a little more hectic.

Please be patient. Thanks.

And now, your lineups:

FLORIDA: Hanley Ramirez SS; Jeremy Hermida RF; Jorge Cantu 3B; Mike Jacobs 1B; Dan Uggla 2B; Luis Gonzalez DH; Cody Ross LF; Alfredo Amezaga CF; Matt Treanor C; Pitching tonight, Ryan Tucker (1-0, 1.80)

TAMPA BAY: Akinori Iwamura 2B; Dioner 'Nick' Navarro C; B.J. Upton CF; Eric Hinske LF; Evan Longoria 3B; Willy Aybar 1B; Cliff Floyd DH; Gabe Gross RF; Jason Bartlett SS. Pitching tonight, Andy Sonnanstine (6-3, 4.88).

-- Josh Willingham is set to begin his Double-A rehab assignment tonight with the Carolina Mudcats (great name). He's going to be playing in left field, getting in at least three at-bats as he tries to work his way back into the Marlins' lineup. Fredi Gonzalez says Hammer can't DH during Greensboro's upcoming games, so he'll likely get a day off the field on Monday.

-- Josh Johnson, working his way back from Tommy John surgery, pitches again tonight for Single-A Greensboro. He went five innings in his last start on Monday (one run, five hits) in an extended spring game up in Jupiter. JJ has a 70-75 pitch limit in this game with the Grasshoppers.

-- Sergio Mitre continues his rehab, threw 30 pitches off a mound today.

-- Luis Gonzalez the DH tonight against the D-Rays, Fredi Gonzalez says former D-Ray Jorge Cantu may get that slot on Saturday, with Hanley Ramirez and Mike Jacobs also seeing time during this nine-game American League swing.

-- It's thundering and raining here at the ballpark. But they have a roof on the building, which works out nice tonight. PLAY BALL

-- The Rays are without a couple of players, serving suspensions for that fun-loving brawl in Boston on June 5. The Bad Rays: RHP James Shields (6 games), OF Carl Crawford (starts tonight, out 4 games). RHP Edwin Jackson (5 games) starts his sit-down on June 16, with Iwamura taking three games off starting on the 18th.

-- FYI: Quite a few Marlins fans in the house tonight, sure most of whom made the quick jaunt up I-75 sometime today. Either that, or they live here in the Tampa Bay area. Whatever. Sure the Rays are glad they are here.

-- Also, no television for tomorrow's 6:10 start; will be here with a live blog for those who like their baseball, well, blogged.

-- For you Super Saturday fans, the Marlins announced their concert series for the second half of the season. Think the Bangles might be a decent show. Anywho: July 19 -- Jerry Rivera; August 2 -- The Bangles; August 16 -- Jaci Velasquez; August 30 -- Olga Tañon; September 13 -- Victor Manuelle and Albita; September 20 -- Lou Gramm of Foreigner (with a few decent solo hits) fame.

May 28, 2008

Freezing at Shea

OK,it may not be freezing at Shea, but the writers from South Florida (two of us didn't bring our fleece wear) can barely type because it's so cold - and it's only the third inning. It's going to get a lot colder as this game wears on and we might be pouring hot coffee on each other before we get to the seventh-inning stretch.

Idon't know what is harder to believe -- this cold weather or the fact Luis Castillo hit a home run.

According to the big league stats, Luis has hit two homers this season (the first came against Tom Glavine on May 20).

Luis never had this kind of power with the Marlins. He was with Florida for 10 seasons, and in the Castillo Decade Luis hit only 20 homers as a Marlin.

He hit a career-high six for the 2003 World Series champs.

May 17, 2008

Those darn Nats

The Marlins didn't get back into town from their recent road trip in Cincinnati until well after 1 a.m. Friday morning. That's about right after a night game, but their final game in Cincy was called off because of rain at 5:30 p.m.

The holdup?

Blame the Washington Nationals.

The Marlins' charter flight home was the same plane that took the Nationals, who played a day game Thursday, from Washington to New York. The Nationals left about 5:30 p.m. from D.C., but got stuck because there were 30 planes ahead of them.

The Marlins had to wait for the Nats to land in New York, and left Cincy after 11 p.m..

May 11, 2008

Mother's Day Matinee -- LIVE from D.C.

ArodWASHINGTON -- Everyone seems to be doing the Fish once more, South Florida's pro baseball team doing quite well in case you haven't heard.

The Marlins are winning games on the field and making winning deals off it, locking up Hanley Ramirez to a six-year deal. Good feelings about the deal in the Marlins clubhouse on Saturday, players saying they are happy to see this organization make a commitment to the future.

Sure this news also quiets some of the low payroll talk these guys face in every city (including Miami Gardens) they visit. The Marlins are playing well right now, helped along by a favorable schedule, sure. But, as a guy who covers the Florida Panthers can attest, wins early in the season count just the same as ones in the final weeks.

The Fish are eight games over .500 and they have the pitching and the offense and right now even the defense to keep up these winning ways. You have to think the Marlins are going to win a good portion of their next eight (today with Olsen throwing against the Expos, four games at WKRP in Cincinnati and three at home against the KC Royales with Cheese) before the NL West leading D-Backs come to South Florida.

But lets not get ahead of ourselves. No local television on today's game, and not sure if you can catch it at your local watering hole on Center Ice, err the MLB Package, or not. If not, catch Dave Van Horne and Glenn Geffner on the radio and remember to check back here throughout the day. Will be working Fish Bytes old school for those without a radio but with a laptop handy.

-- Come on, call your Mom. Tell her we all send her our best.

-- Fish Bytes and On Frozen Pond send out congratulations to San Diego's Greg Maddux for getting his 350th career victory last night. Think he's a Hall of Fame candidate now, or does he need to do more?

-- Do you realize the Marlins .611 winning percentage coming into today is second only to the D-Backs in the National League, and third overall (Boston is at .615). Florida's 22 victories rank them fifth in baseball. That's pretty heady stuff there.

-- Couple changes on the lineup today. As planned, Alfredo Amezaga back in center, leading off. Mike Rabelo also behind the plate (Matt Treanor played past three games and it's a night-day dealio). For the Expos, old pal (unless you're a Red Sox fan) Aaron Boone starting at first and batting fourth. He pinch-hit last night and was robbed thanks to a terrific catch in left by Brett Carroll.


Olsenbat Florida: CF Amezaga; RF Hermida; SS Ramirez; 3B Cantu; 2B Uggla; LF Gonzalez; 1B Helms; C Rabelo; P Olsen.

Montreal: SS Lopez; 2B Belliard; 3B Zimmerman; 1B Boone; CF Milledge; LF Pena; RF Dukes; C Flores; P Hill.

-- Here are some bonus quotes on the Hanley Ramirez signing from yesterday:

Manny Acta: “He’s special. He’s one of those few guys that you can say that. Hanley can do whatever he wants int the game. It’s that simple. He can hit a home run. He can bunt and steal second and third and score on anything. He’ll take a walk. He’ll hit over .320, almost guaranteed. He can do everything he wants in the game. He’s one of those legit five-tool players. there are a lot of guys a lot of people throw the five-tool guy at them and they’re not. This guy is a five-tool guy – legit.”

Dan Uggla: “I think it’s a great move. He’s going to be one of the best players in the game for a long time. He’s a winner and I think it’s really smart on their part. I’m real excited for Hanley. He plays his butt off.’’

Josh Willingham: “Fans want to be familiar with their players and they want to know the team is going to be commited to them. For him, to know he’s going to be around for a long time, maybe that’ll bring more fans out. I don’t know. It is good.’’

Luis Gonzalez:“It shows people that this organization is committed with the stadium coming. In the past, they’ve had to make moves to accomidate things because of the lack of fans coming out. By agreeing with Hanley, that shows there’s a commitment there where we’re going to do what we have to do to keep players like that and lock them up long time. That’s a commitment to the fans.’’

Fredi Gonzalez: “He’s one hell of a player, a good player. We’ve hit him third the past six, seven days and he gets on base, drove in some runs, walks, steals. His game hasn’t changed from being leadoff now that he’s in the three hole. If he gets on, he’s a threat to score.’’

-- Other news from today: Mike Jacobs still out, could play in the Natti. Josh Willingham will not do anything today, Fredi G saying his back was bothering him in BP yesterday. Willingham will travel with team to Ohio, maybe get in some BP there before getting his minor league rehab assignment.

-- About to get started here at Nationals Park, a number of the Marlins sporting some kind of pink today as park of baseball's annual Cancer awareness day. Some guys are wearing pink sweatbands (good luck breaking a sweat today), cleats or batting gloves. A good number of pink bats coming out as well. The Nats are giving out white caps with the Walgreens W in pink with the Cancer ribbon on the bill.


-- First pitch from Shawn Hill (not the former Panthers defenseman) at 1:36 p.m. Alfredo Amezaga took a ball, did not hit the first pitch over the left field wall like Cody Ross did Saturday night...

Ironically, Sean Hill the hockey player is from Minnesota; Shawn Hill the baseballer is from Missasaugua, Ontario (which is outside of Toronto, home of the airport and, more importantly, Woodbine Racetrack.)

-- The US National softball team is here. I did not notice Jenny Finch. I was looking.

T1: Fish go 1-2-3; B1: Very efficient inning by Scott Olsen, puts down Nats in order on a mere six (yes, six) pitches.

T2: Marlins lead 1-0; with one out, Dan Uggla hit by pitch; races to third on bloop single by Luis Gonzalez and scores on sacrifice fly to center by Wes Helms. FLA 1-0. B2: And on pitch No. 9, Aaron Boone ties 'er up, line drive homer to center. 1-1. But, that's it for Nats. Hanley robs Lastings Milledge for the second straight night as Wash goes 1-2-3 after homer. Olsen now at 18 pitches.

T3: Jeremy Hermida and Hanley single with two outs, Cantu ends it by grounding out 5-3. Going on WQAM here for a few minutes, shall return.. B3: Nationals pick up three runs in the inning; Ronnie Belliard's 2-run homer to left makes it 3-1, then Aaron Boone doubles, error on Amezaga in center allowing Zimmerman to score. WASH 4-1.

T4: Marlins go out quietly 1-2-3. Abe Lincoln wins the President's Race (a cool rip-off of Milwaukee's Sausage Race) after Teddy Roosevelt runs into the crowd! That crazy president....B4: Wily Mo Pena walks to lead off the inning, but he didn't go anywhere as Olsen puts the Nats down after that. Still 4-1.

T5: Mike Rabelo singles to lead things off, gets taken out at second on Olsen's fielder's choice; Olsen out at second on Amezaga's fielder's choice for out No. 2; Amezaga makes sure he doesn't get into that mix, steals second before Hermida grounds out to second. Still 4-1. B5: Felipe Lopez walks to open things, moves to second on a Belliard groundout and is caught trying to steal third (larceny!). Zim flies out to deep center. Still 4-1...

T6: Nothing really happened, except Dan Uggla homered to center to pull Miami within two at 4-2. B6: Boone leads off with single, gets wrapped up in a 6-4-3, then Pena grounds out. Still at 4-2...

T7:  Two outs and Olsen is out; Brett Carroll pinch-hitting; no win for Olsen (6 ip, 6h, 4r, 4ER, 2HR) today...Carroll grounds out, it's uno-dos-tres...Also, a scoring change from the third. No error for Amezaga and a triple for Boonie...Still 4-2. B7: Jesus Flores doubles off Logan Kensing with one out, pinch-hitter Nick Johnson strikes out for No. 2 and Felipe Lopez flies out deep to center as Amezaga tracks it down on the track..

T8: Marlins tie score...Hermida deposits pitch in right field bleachers after Amezaga runs out an infield single...4-4, no outs in the 8th..Marlins lead again...Uggla homers again, puts this one in right field as well...Fish up 5-4 with two outs in the eighth ('The Ocho').....end of the inning, a big one indeed, Fish up 5-4...B8: Renyel Pinto in for the Marlins; gives up a walk to Belliard to start things off, then the slumping Zimmerman grounds into a 6-4-3 double play for outs 1 and 2. Boonie just flew out to right.

T9: Marlins go 1-2-3, here comes Gregg (and the usual 'It Ain't Over' clip from Bluto on the big screen). Here's the full scene, minus the F-bombs courtesy of IMDB.com:

D-Day: War's over, man. Wormer dropped the big one.
Bluto: Over? Did you say "over"? Nothing is over until we decide it is! Was it over when the Germans bombed Pearl Harbor? Hell no!
Bluto Otter: Germans?
Boon: Forget it, he's rolling.
Bluto: And it ain't over now. 'Cause when the goin' gets tough...
[thinks hard]
Bluto: the tough get goin'! Who's with me? Let's go!
[runs out, alone; then returns]
Bluto: What ---- happened to the Delta I used to know? Where's the spirit? Where's the guts, huh? "Ooh, we're afraid to go with you Bluto, we might get in trouble." Well just kiss my [grass] from now on! Not me! I'm not gonna take this. Wormer, he's a dead man! Marmalard, dead! Niedermeyer...
Otter: Dead! Bluto's right. Psychotic, but absolutely right. We gotta take these bastards. Now we could do it with conventional weapons that could take years and cost millions of lives. No, I think we have to go all out. I think that this situation absolutely requires a really futile and stupid gesture be done on somebody's part.
Bluto: We're just the guys to do it.
D-Day: Let's do it.
Bluto: LET'S DO IT!

B9: Kevin Gregg in relief to close things out. Milledge up first, takes a free pass to first. Willie Harris has a broken-bat flare caught in right by Hermida for out numero uno. Elijah Dukes pops out to Uggla in foul territory for out number two. Jesus Flores up with two outs and a man on, sends shot back to Gregg how tossed to first for final out.

Your final from Washington, Florida 5-4 over the Nationals. Been fun covering the Marlins these past few weeks. See you all later.