The Marlins are content waiting for their top prospect to work his way toward Triple-A New Orleans.
The best thing the Miami Marlins can do for their top minor league prospect Sixto Sanchez is allow him to continue to do what he is doing. While he is still developing his craft at Double-A Jacksonville, the hope is the team won’t rush the soon-to-be 21-year-old through their minor league system, which could hurt their potential ace in the long run.
The Marlins have the luxury of moving slowly in this process, given the depth of starting pitching on the Major League level and young arms waiting patiently for their turn to step on the rubber.
Sanchez, who came over the in the deal with Philadelphia that sent J.T. Realmuto to the Phillies, has the makings of a star, but it may take a little longer than other prospects to reach his full potential.
"Per MLB.com, “Ranked as the 21st overall prospect on MLB Pipeline’s Top 100 list, Sanchez continues to build up innings, reaching 87 after Tuesday’s outing.”"
More from Marlins Prospects
- Miami Marlins: Checking in on prospects from the 2022 Arizona Fall League
- Miami Marlins: How top 2022 MLB Draft picks performed this season
- What’s wrong with Kahlil Watson?
- Miami Marlins: Farm System rankings part 2
- Miami Marlins: Farm System rankings part 1
The front office knew what they were getting when they made the deal prior to Spring Training, making sure Sanchez was a major part of this deal.
"“It’s a special arm,” Marlins president of baseball operations Michael Hill said. “You keep him healthy and you keep building.”"
Health is one of the biggest concerns with Sanchez, who throws with power and is learning consistency on the mound. His fastball registers 99 MPH with pop. He is still a work in progress. It’s a cliché that works well when describing his early success.
There is no real timetable when Sanchez will move up the chain to the team’s Triple-A affiliate in New Orleans. There are a few other pitchers ahead of him on track to pitch for the parent club.
"“We haven’t talked specifically about doing anything other than letting him take the ball every five days,” Hill said. “He’s already approaching career innings for him. It’s just a matter of getting him into that routine and taking the ball every five days, and going out there and competing.”"
Sanchez was on the mound for a noon baseball game here in Jacksonville. One of the local sportscasters looked at the starter and said he reminded him a bit of Pedro Martinez in his delivery and his velocity with his fastball. If the Marlins can get out of Sanchez anything that resembles Martinez, then the trade that sent an All-Star catcher north on I-95 was well worth it.
Right elbow inflammation shut Sanchez down after only 90 innings pitched in the Phillies organization. So far, it has not been an issue with the Jumbo Shrimp. But it is something the organization monitors.
"“We’re just continuing his development and his growth,” Hill said. “Keeping him healthy, first and foremost. I think both our training staff and our coaching staff have done a great job in managing him.”"