The Marlins were largely expected to make some noise this offseason.
Thus far, their moves have been largely second tier in nature. The signing of outfielder Matt Kemp, infielder Jonathan Villar, first baseman Jesus Aguilar, reliever Yimi Garcia, and catcher Francisco Cervelli qualify as the biggest moves thus far. Garcia and Villar rank as the biggest of those, but the Marlins shouldn’t phone it in just yet.
Miami still requires some assistance in the bullpen. There are a lot of solid possibilities for the closers role, including Garcia, Drew Steckenrider, Austin Brice, Adam Conley, Ryne Stanek, Jarlin Garcia, Jose Urena, and any number of swing-arms who could start or relieve.
Miami manager Don Mattingly, in the past, has used a “closer by committee” mentality. Whoever is “most ready” on that particular day will get the chance. Still, better teams have that one “lock-down” guy that they’ll call on for the last three outs. The Marlins aspire to be one of those “better teams.”
For the better part of last season, Sergio Romo ably filled the role, saving 17 games prior to getting traded to the Minnesota Twins just prior to the trade deadline. After that, Mattingly was true-to-form. Urena saved three and Conley two. Tyler Kinley (now with the Rockies), Nick Anderson (now with the Rays in the Stanek deal), Jeff Brigham, Quijada, and Stanek each logged one save.
More from Marlins News
- Miami Marlins are pursuing Michael Conforto
- Miami Marlins need to spend to win
- Miami Marlins can’t afford to botch this trade
- Miami Marlins news: the New York Mets are a risky threat
- Miami Marlins keep missing out on stars
One direction Miami would be wise to consider is former team-closer Steve Cishek. Already third on the Marlins all-time saves list with 94, Cishek could become the all-time leader with another 15 saves. Robb Nen is the current leader with 108, while Antonio Alfonseca has 102.
Still just 33-years-old, Cishek hasn’t lost a step. Last season with the Chicago Cubs, he pitched in 70 games and held opponents to a 1.203 WHIP and a 2.95 ERA with seven saves and 57 K’s in 64 innings of work.
Since getting traded from Miami to the St. Louis Cardinals for Kyle Barraclough at the 2015 trade deadline, Cishek has also pitched for the Seattle Mariners and the Tampa Bay Rays. Entering his 11th major league season, Cishek is a proven property who would be riding the pine with a lot of “what if’s?”
The Marlins should go all-in on Cishek and his remarkable delivery sometime in the next few weeks. That’s not a prediction, just a suggestion. Thanks for reading. Keep checking here for the latest Marlins news and rumors.