The Marlins, in their struggles this year, brought up a number of players in an effort to stop hemorrhaging losses. Donovan Solano replaced the traded Omar Infante at second, although Infante was traded to sweeten the deal to get Jacob Turner and Rob Brantly, not because he was playing poorly. Rob Brantly came in on a trade because catchers John Buck and Brett Hayes simply could not hit this year. Carlos Lee came to Miami from Houston to replace a slumping Gaby Sanchez, and we brought Nathan Eovaldi in from the west coast so we could get rid of Hanley Ramirez. Gaby’s swing didn’t come back in the minors, so we sent him to Pittsburg in exchange for Gorkys Hernandez.
Of the mid-year moves and promotions, four players stand out as having done well enough that they most likely have a starting job next year, assuming they don’t get traded away in the off-season.
Rob Brantly has done such a good job backstopping John Buck that, because his hitting is so much better than Buck’s Brantly will probably be the starting catcher next year. Let’s hope that Buck’s nose doesn’t get out of joint, and that he spends the season teaching Brantly the finer points of commanding a game from behind the dish.
Donovan Solano has done a superb job at second. In fact, he was named as the Marlins’ Rookie of the Year today. It’s pretty clear he’ll have the job in the spring. I hope we can entice his catcher brother, Jonotan to Miami, in the event Buck’s bat is gone next year, too.
Pitchers Nathan Eovaldi and Jacob Turner have earned spots in the rotation next year. Eovaldi has more heat, but it looks like Turner has better command. If Eovaldi can get his pitch location solidified, he will be one to watch next year, for sure.
One final note: The first of the vanguard to come out of the farm system is Steve Cishek. He’s a borderline guy in that if he can figure out a changeup that kills lefties, he’s a solid for the closer role next year. If he still struggles, look for the Marlins to bring in a closer.