Fish Bites, 06/12/2009

I’ll be attempting to put up a regular news and notes column highlighting the day’s Florida Marlins news, along with any other interesting tidbits around Major League Baseball. Let’s dive into today’s links.

- MLB.com reports that manager Fredi Gonzalez expects it will be another three or four days until Anibal Sanchez can start throwing, meaning there’s no chance he’ll be available to pitch when he’s first eligible to come off the DL June 18. With Sean West’s last gem and how the rest of staff has performed admirably, I don’t think we’ll miss Sanchez and his current 5.22 FIP. I don’t doubt some of that was his shoulder, but he’d been pitching poorly before his last DL stint and all the way back into when he first came back midseason last year. Maybe something’s still wrong with him, a Triple-A stint or extended rehab session in the minors may be in the works.

- Speaking of the rotation, Dave Hyde of the Sun-Sentinel has not given up on the Marlins’ season yet, and it’s because the young starters are starting to get it. I’m just as much of a fan of our young staff, but there is work to be done. It’s been noted that the Marlins’ starters have increased their K/9 and decreased their BB/9, typically a great sign, but when two of your three main cogs are giving around 1.5 HR/9, it’s going to be tough to win back this season. I love how Miller has been playing as of late, and if he can keep his walks down, he’ll be a mainstay. Chris Volstad’s HR/FB is likely fluky and should come down, but Ricky Nolasco’s HR/FB has remained around his career totals, with his HR/9 up 0.2. I’m certain that if he can get that value down, his numbers will look more like those of last year, but it remains to be seen. I’m still optimistic.

- The Palm Beach Post wraps up the Marlins’ draft, noting that half of the team’s selections were pitchers. No real surprises here, folks. Larry Beinfest and company run this organization excellently, and if there’s one thing we’ve learned about their style, which has seemed to work well so far, is that they stock up on pitching, especially high school arms ala Chris Volstad. Here’s hoping that Chad James kid can bring it, along with the rest of the team’s new arms.

- MLB.com also has a random piece on the fastest player in baseball. Lot’s of typical names, no surprises here. Marlins third base coach Bo Porter went with the homer pick of Emilio Bonifacio, though I can’t imagine he’d know that well since Bonifacio is hardly on base. Similarly, Braves catcher Brian McCann chose Michael Bourn and Willy Taveras, two guys who would be somewhat lucky to have an OBP above .310. In all honesty, I’m really tired of the fast leadoff man ideal. Can we find guys like Taveras or Joey Gathright that can actually get on base? Seems like every speedster has a horrendous bat and, even if they could draw walks, pitchers just pound the strike zone and dare them to hit more than a weak grounder up the middle. Jose Reyes, please lead the way.

- I actually almost forgot this one. Witness Kansas City vs. Cleveland last night, and in particular the highlights of the game winning hit by Mark DeRosa. That bird cannot be feeling well this morning.

Topics: Andrew Miller, Anibal Sanchez, Chris Volstad, Fish Bites, Fredi Gonzalez, Miami Marlins, Ricky Nolasco, Sean West

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