After Steve Cishek blew back-to-back games for the Miami Marlins, against the Giants and Dodgers, the Marlins decided it was time to remove Cishek from the closer role. Cishek owns a 10.32 ERA and a 5.28 FIP in 11 1/3 innings of work in 2015.
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With Cishek out of the picture, for the time being, the Miami Marlins will need to turn to someone else to close out games for them. A.J. Ramos seems to be the primary option, with Mike Dunn and Bryan Morris serving as backups to the role.
However, according to Jon Heyman of CBS Sports, the Miami Marlins could be considering someone else for the role, someone that’s not even on the team right now.
"Marlins GM Dan Jennings and Soriano’s agent Scott Boras are expected to speak Tuesday, after Marlins closer Steve Cishek suffered his fourth blown save on a three-run, ninth-inning home run to the Dodgers Scott Van Slyke in a 5-3 Dodgers win. The Marlins had given Cishek a 3-2 lead on Christian Yelich‘s two-run home run in the top of the inning.Jennings is in Los Angeles with the team, and Boras attends Dodgers home games, so there will be a chance to talk at the game, if not sooner."
Lo and behold, it was reported that Jennings and Boras were sitting next to each other at the Marlins-Dodgers game last night, one which saw the Dodgers dismantle the Miami Marlins 11-1.
Rafael Soriano is 35-years old and still hasn’t found a home, despite it being May. His agent is Scott Boras, so that tells you his contract demands could be a reason for him not having a spot on any roster.
After the Marlins “missed out” on Francisco Rodriguez, the team had a chance to Soriano, but opted against it, mainly due to clubhouse issues he presented in the past, according to Barry Jackson of the Miami Herald.
"Though the Marlins continue to talk with Scott Boras about unsigned former Nationals closer Rafael Soriano, keep in mind he blew seven of 39 save chances for Washington in 2014. And he has had a less-than-stellar clubhouse reputation, a concern a Marlins person expressed in the spring."
Soriano, who spent the last two seasons with the Nationals, collected 75 saves, posting a 3.15 ERA and a 3.38 FIP in 128 2/3 innings of work.
Steamer projects Soriano for a 3.84 ERA and a 4.07 FIP in 51 innings for 2015. While that’s not bad, it’s not quite worth what his agent, Scott Boras, could be seeking for Soriano’s services. And if you add on the clubhouse issues he’s had in the past, it makes a potential move even more questionable.
With Soriano not having pitched since last season, he would not likely be able to sign today and pitch tomorrow for the club. The Marlins would likely have to allow Soriano two or three weeks in the minors before he’s even ready to throw.
The Marlins have started the season 15-19, with a league leading 9 blow saves. Granted, those are not all on Steve Cishek, but you can see the Marlins have an issue. While Cishek’s issues early in the season are real, it’s hard to make a judgement on a player on 11 innings of work, especially one with a track record like Cishek.
Over the past couple of seasons, Cishek has been among the better relievers in baseball. He’s posted a 2.73 ERA and a 2.35 FIP in 135 innings of work. He has struck out over 10 per nine innings in that span, as well. His 3.4 fWAR places him tied for 8 over the past two seasons.
The best hope for the Marlins should be to allow A.J. Ramos to close games while Cishek works on his mechanics and gets his stuff fixed. Ramos, who owns a 1.92 FIP in 17 innings of work, has been the Marlins best reliever. He’s striking out a career best 11 per nine innings and walking a career low of 3.18 per nine.
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Signing Soriano would be a complete overreaction. As would trading for a reliever, especially when the Marlins don’t have a ton of trade chips in the first place.