When the Miami Marlins open up a huge series against fellow NL Wild Card contender St. Louis Thursday night at Marlins Park, they will do so with a brand new All-Star second baseman on the roster.
Dee Gordon is back sports fans, and the reigning National League Batting Champion could end up playing a huge roll in pushing the Marlins on toward October.
Or he could end up being a monumental distraction that helps bring this feel good story crashing back down to Earth just in time for the crosstown Dolphins to start playing preseason games.
Or maybe he’ll play just well enough that some team loses their head and offers the Marlins a top-flight starting pitcher in exchange for Gordon and the team’s top two healthy, eligible prospects.
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All are possibilities. The only certainty is that Don Mattingly and the Marlins are going to have some tough choices to make, and in a hurry. The issue of who gets sent down to clear a roster spot looms large, and could merit an article all on its own. Can you really demote Don Kelly after Wednesday’s 3 for 5, 2 RBI outburst? Can you roll with just four bonafide outfielders, and get by without Cole Gillespie? Does Dee Gordon effectively replace Miguel Rojas for two months? Everything could be on the table, even stalling for time and briefly demoting a member of the bullpen.
But the biggest question for me is what Gordon will spend tomorrow doing. Tomorrow particularly, but really this whole initial series back with the team. Start him or sit him? Situational player or immediate regular? Does he get slotted directly back into the leadoff position, or should he have to earn that back?
Personally, I’m of two minds on the matter. So rather than just pick a side, I’ve decided to put both positions out there for your consideration before weighing in. And I’m anxious to hear from you, Marlin Maniacs. What is the best use for Dee Gordon, and should he get his full job back right away? Tell us in the comments, poke at us on Facebook, chirp at us on Twitter…you get the picture.
Next: The Case For Starting Dee Tomorrow