Mar 15, 2014; Jupiter, FL, USA; Miami Marlins starting pitcher Jose Fernandez (16) delivers a pitch against the Washington Nationals at Roger Dean Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Scott Rovak-USA TODAY Sports
I understand that Spring Training should never be taken too seriously when it comes to the grand scheme of a normal regular baseball season, but I can’t help myself.
I can’t believe how good the Miami Marlins pitching could be this year.
It’s actually kind of underrated how good the pitching could be this year because it seems we have top of the line starters from top to bottom. From our young and hungry major league rotation, to the high end prospects in the minors, the Marlins are extremely well suited for the upcoming season.
Jose Fernandez could blossom into a top 5 pitcher. Nathan Eovaldi is evolving into one of the most electrifying players in the game. Alvarez has shown incredible amounts of dominance and is already an innings workhorse. Jacob Turner still has the potential to become an effective pitcher since he is still young at just 22, and Tom Koehler and Brad Hand are in the running for the fifth spot and both have shown some great work this spring.
Currently, the Marlins have the best team ERA in the Majors and its not even by a close margin. They have 2.52 mark while the next best team (Tampa Bay Rays) has a 3.06 mark.
It’s kind of incredible the treasure trove of talent we have in the most important area of the game. Pitching wins championships and it’s a testament to our front office that they have recognized this philosophy.
In the minors, Brian Flynn could come up soon and either be an effective innings eater or a lockdown relief pitcher. Andrew Heaney could be an excellent number 2 pitcher behind Fernandez, which could give the Marlins a dominating front of the rotation with Fernandez, Eovaldi, and Heaney. Imagine facing that rotation in the playoffs, it would definitely make a lot of major league teams worried about their chance.
The Marlins are in prime position to make some noise this year because if their offense can just give a bit of run support, they could ride their pitching all the way into the sunset. I’m not saying the Marlins are going to make the playoffs this year or anything like that, but I do think the team will definitely be on the rise in the standings. With the weaknesses in the division, as the Braves are depleted in the rotation, the Mets are in their near constant rebuilding process, and the Phillies playing 30+ plus players way past their prime, the Marlins could finally break out of the three year last place slump.
We’ll see what happens, but I won’t be surprised if this team is playing meaningful games in August.
Till next time, Go Marlins!