Relief Effort: Can the Marlins find help for the bullpen?

DENVER, CO - SEPTEMBER 27: Starting pitcher Adam Conley
DENVER, CO - SEPTEMBER 27: Starting pitcher Adam Conley /

The focus of the baseball Winter Meetings has been on catcher J.T. Realmuto, but the Miami Marlins need help for their bullpen this offseason as well.

The Miami Marlins are in the market for a veteran or two to help with their bullpen this offseason. It is one of the many wish-list items on the front office’s Christmas list, which the team hopes will come early in the form of reliables arms.

The Marlins finished the 2018 season with a “closer by committee” approach out of necessity. Brad Ziegler and then Kyle Barraclough took turns mucking it up before the veteran submarine pitcher was traded to Arizona and the neophtye was shut down because of injury, returned to the ‘pen to close out the season and was traded shortly thereafter.

To say finding a few good arms is essential to  the progress of the pitching staff in 2019 may be just as important as making sure the Marlins get more than equal value should they trade J.T. Realmuto.

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With the baseball Winter Meetings in Las Vegas gainign steam and the notion of teams making a pitch to grab Realmuto, Michael Hill and Derek Jeter are setting their sights on other areas of important to the growth of the roster.

This isn’t an area of great depth in free agency and those on the market don’t knock anyone over with their dominance on the mound. But any addition has to be better than what the Marlisn trotted out there at the end of the dismal 2018 campaign.

“Miami is not necessarily seeking a closer but someone who has had success in late innings. A few free agents that fit the mold are Jeurys Familia, Jake Diekman, Adam Warren and Kelvin Herrera,” writes Joe Frisaro of

The idea is to help provide balance for the young staff and rotation. Too many times, the bullpen failed to hold a lead or convert a save opportunity. This was a team that was sixth in the league in ERA last season, but only managed 63 wins.

“We’ve done that in the past, where that veteran has some history closing games,” Hill said. “I think when you’re talking about that veteran stabilizer in that role, it’s someone who has pitched in leverage situations. Someone who is not necessarily a closer, but someone who has pitched in high-leverage situations.”

Next. Marlins playing wait and see with J.T. Realmuto. dark

Adam Conley and Drew Steckenrider figure to battle it out in Training Camp for the open closer’s role. The team could seek aother closer in free agency, of find veteran set-up pitchers who can log innings and pitch on multiple nights.