The Miami Marlins were among this offseason’s biggest movers and shakers, and it’s looking like the club may finally be happy with its roster with Spring Training a few weeks away.
"Not that the door is completely closed for business, but basically what you see from Miami is what you will get once Spring Training gets underway on Feb. 20 in Jupiter, Fla.“You never say never, but I would say we’re very happy with what we’ve been able to accomplish this offseason,” president of baseball operations Michael Hill said."
For the fourth season in a row, the Marlins will carry a very different-looking team into Spring Training. Since moving into Marlins Park in 2012 and becoming the Miami Marlins, there has obviously been a lot of roster turnover in Miami. Change has been the one constant these past several years, but the Marlins now find themselves in their best position to content in quite some time.
They also had one of the busiest winters in franchise history. They’ve made significant roster shakeups in past offseasons – yes, I’m referring to 2012 – but things were different this year; multiple trades were made, and the Marlins were on the receiving end of quality MLB players, for once.
In case you’ve forgotten, a refresher:
The Marlins acquired 2B Dee Gordon, RHP Dan Haren and SS Miguel Rojas from the Los Angeles Dodgers. That same day they made official the acquisition of RHP Mat Latos from the Cincinnati Reds. They then snagged 3B Miguel Prado and RHP David Phelps from the New York Yankees.
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They made a splash on the free agent market by signing World Series champ and South Florida-native Michael Morse to play first base for the next two seasons.
Each of these players project to make the Opening Day roster or help the team at some point in 2015.
After all the shuffling and swapping, it’s easy to lose track of what the team might look like this year. Let’s take a look at what the Marlins 25-man roster might look like on Opening Day:
And the projected lineup:
1. 2B Gordon 2. LF Yelich 3. RF Stanton 4. 1B Morse 5. CF Ozuna 6. 3B Prado 7. C Saltalamacchia 8. SS Hechavarria
This is, of course, by no means official. A lot can happen in Spring Training with injuries, players underperforming and another trade wouldn’t be unheard of.
"The focus now for the front office is depth. If something makes sense, the club will consider its options. A year ago, for instance, Jeff Baker and Carlos Marmol reached big league deals on Feb. 7 and Feb. 11, respectively."
Don’t forget that Dan Haren could still be traded before Opening Day. But according to Frisaro, the team plans on having him in the rotation.
There’s also the matter of Brad Hand being out of options. The team could choose to keep him on the roster and use him out of the bullpen if he doesn’t fit in the rotation, or they risk losing him to waivers. Last year Carter Capps made a strong case, so the Marlins will have some decisions to make when assembling the bullpen.
It’s a great problem to have.
Jordany Valdespin also is not on the 40-man roster, which is full, and would require designating a player for assignment for him to be on the Opening Day roster. Derek Dietrich could be an option to fill that spot on the bench as he also bats left handed, but for now I’m penciling Valdespin in there.
What do you think of our Marlins 25-man roster projection? Let us know in the comments below!