Miami Marlins Spring Training Update: Catching the Catchers (Pt. 4)

MIAMI, FL - APRIL 29: Bryan Holaday #28 of the Miami Marlins slides into home plate for the score in the eighth inning against the Colorado Rockies at Marlins Park on April 29, 2018 in Miami, Florida. (Photo by Mark Brown/Getty Images)
MIAMI, FL - APRIL 29: Bryan Holaday #28 of the Miami Marlins slides into home plate for the score in the eighth inning against the Colorado Rockies at Marlins Park on April 29, 2018 in Miami, Florida. (Photo by Mark Brown/Getty Images) /

The Miami Marlins still have eight catchers in camp with Opening Day just two weeks away.

This Spring Training, Marlin Maniac is keeping abreast of the situation in Jupiter, Florida, and the roster possibilities for Miami Marlins Opening Day. On Monday, we look at the rotation. Tuesday we review the outfield. On Wednesdays the bullpen takes center stage. Thursdays the catchers get their day, and on Friday we review the infield picture.

The Miami Marlins currently have eight pitchers in camp. Only two are part of the “active” roster. Jorge Alfaro, recently acquired in the J.T. Realmuto trade, and Chad Wallach, last seasons third Marlins catcher. Chances at making the Opening Day roster are entirely estimated by me, and are not reflective of FanSided. I rated my chances more on what I think the Miami Marlins will do, and less on what I think they should do. The stat line is for the last seven days of play, from March 7th through 13th.

Miami Marlins 40-Man Roster

Miami Marlins
PHILADELPHIA, PA – AUGUST 17: Jorge Alfaro #38 of the Philadelphia Phillies catches the ball as Jeff McNeil #68 of the New York Mets slides into home plate in the eighth inning at Citizens Bank Park on August 17, 2018 in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania. (Photo by Drew Hallowell/Getty Images) /

Jorge Alfaro

Jorge Alfaro has no set timetable to return to game-action. After running into a railing going for a foul ball in the first game of the spring, an 11-1 loss to the St. Louis Cardinals, Alfaro initially stayed in the contest.

"I don’t try to put too much pressure on me. Just enjoy my time, enjoy this game that I’ve been playing for a long time. It was my dream to come here and make it to the big leagues. … I don’t want to really think about what people say. I know how hard it is to get here. – Alfaro, quoted in the Miami Herald by Jordan McPherson"

Since then, Alfaro has only made one appearance. He’s two-for-five from the plate, and could probably benefit from a few more reps in the batter’s box before the season starts. The Miami Marlins will not put him back in until he’s completely healed. That’s allowed the coaching staff to check out the other catchers in camp a little more in-depth.  Opening Day Roster Chance: 50 percent (due to injury)

Miami Marlins
NEW YORK, NY – SEPTEMBER 30: Jeff McNeil #68 of the New York Mets scores a run past Chad Wallach #17 of the Miami Marlins during the fourth inning at Citi Field on September 30, 2018 in the Flushing neighborhood of the Queens borough of New York City. (Photo by Adam Hunger/Getty Images) /

Chad Wallach

Chad Wallach 0-for-four, two strikeouts, CS rate zero-for-three

A .161 career major league hitter, Wallach is three-for-33 this spring (three-for-32 last spring, btw). A better-than-average defensive catcher, Wallach is never going to hit .300, or maybe not even .200. He does flash occasional power, with 30 career minor-league home runs over 427 games. Against all odds, he was the Marlins 2018 Opening Day catcher, and could repeat the trick in 2019. Opening Day Roster Chance: 70 percent

Non-Roster Invitees

Santiago Chavez

Santiago Chavez one-for-five, one run, two strikeouts

After arriving to camp late, due to a visa issue, Chavez has gone four-for-12 in game action, including two doubles. He’s guilty of one passed ball in 33 innings of work, and is one-for-two in throwing base-stealers out. Opening Day Roster Chance: 20 percent

Nick Fortes

Nick Fortes one-for-two, CS rate one-of-two

A late arrival to camp, Fortes has gone two-for-four in limited action, with a stolen base and an RBI to his credit. He’s the only player in camp that was chosen in the 2018 draft (he was taken in the fourth round). Fortes is 22-years-old, and is a solid defensive catcher. He’s gunned down one-of-three trying to steal this spring. In his first professional season, last year, he proved solid in a small sample size:

"In total, over 78 plate appearances, Fortes drew 11 walks and struck out only five times. Defensively, he played 125 innings behind the plate, and finished with a .992 fielding percentage, making one error in 133 total chances. He passed three balls in that time, and threw out eight-of-22 basestealers for a 36 percent gun-down rate. – Marlin Maniac"

Opening Day Roster Chance: Zero percent

Miami Marlins
MIAMI, FL – AUGUST 26: Bryan Holaday #28 of the Miami Marlins throws towards first base during the fifth inning against the Atlanta Braves at Marlins Park on August 26, 2018 in Miami, Florida. All players across MLB will wear nicknames on their backs as well as colorful, non-traditional uniforms featuring alternate designs inspired by youth-league uniforms during Players Weekend. (Photo by Eric Espada/Getty Images) /

Bryan Holaday

Bryan Holaday two-for-seven, one double, two walks, one strikeout, CS rate zero-of-two

More than any other non-roster invitee, Holaday has proved himself at the major league level. He’s got a .234 career batting average over parts of seven big league seasons, and last year led the National League by nabbing 45 percent trying to take a free base. Opening Day Roster Chance: 50 percent

B.J. Lopez

B.J. Lopez hasn’t appeared in a game for the Miami Marlins this past week. He’s gone one-for-three in limited action this spring, appearing in two games. He’s a career .214 hitter in seven minor league seasons, with a 35 percent CS rate. Opening Day Roster Chance: Zero percent

Sharif Othman

Sharif Othman, turning 30-years-old next week, is an eight-season minor league veteran with a .202 career batting average. He’s got a 30 percent kill rate over that time. He also didn’t get into a game over the past week. Opening Day Roster Chance: Zero percent

More from Marlins News

Rodrigo Vigil

Rodrigo Vigil 0-for-two

Vigil is two-for-10 this spring. In 26 innings of work, he’s thrown out three-of-six runners trying to advance. Out of the group of veterans in camp, he’s got the best career minor league batting average, at .248 over eight seasons with the Marlins organization. Opening Day Roster Chance: 10 percent

Check back tomorrow for an update on the infield. Subscribe to our daily newsletter, follow us on Twitter, and like us on Facebook to keep up with the Miami Marlins.

Next. The Bullpen, Part 4. dark