Will changes made to the team’s bullpen this offseason help the Miami Marlins become more consistent on the mound in 2020?
The changes to the Miami Marlins bullpen continue. When it was announced the front office had signed right-handed relief pitcher Brandon Kintzler to a one-year deal that includes an option for the 2021 season, it meant the front office is still working to find the right combination of pitchers to help the starting rotation.
It also means more change is on the way. And with that Derek Jeter and Michael Hill once again are proving they know how to run this baseball organization. It may not be this season, but there is a winning pattern being built with these Marlins, one that has been missing for a decade.
"“The collective 4.97 ERA from Marlins relievers was the fifth-worst in MLB last season,” writes Jordan McPherson of the Miami Herald. “They were also the fifth-worst in strikeout-to-walk ratio (2.11), save percentage (55.1) and wild pitches (39’) while having a 1.45 walks and hits per innings pitched that ranked in the bottom 10 of the league.”"
Making moves to bring in Yimi Garcia from the Dodgers, adding Sterling Sharp in the Rule-5 Draft, snagging Stephen Tarpley from the Yankees and now the addition of Kintzler means there is plenty of new arms to find the right balance for Don Mattingly’s team.
More from Marlins News
- Miami Marlins news: Another target gone
- Why didn’t the Miami Marlins sign JDM?
- Miami Marlins rejected Boston‘s trade offer
- Miami Marlins are pursuing Michael Conforto
- Miami Marlins need to spend to win
It also means there will be higher expectations walking into the 2020 season.
The Marlins still have to find an everyday closer to finish out what this staff starts with. Sergio Romo was brought in last season around this time but was traded to Minnesota at the Trade Deadline. There are contenders for the slot, including Drew Steckenrider, who was injured last season and could not contribute effectively while on the mound.
Someone may be released, as Marlin Maniac expert Kevin Kraczkowski wrote, to make room for this move.
"“The culprit will undoubtedly be a relief pitcher, of which the Marlins currently have far in excess of the eight they’ll presumably begin the 2020 campaign with,” he said.“They also currently have 22 pitchers on the 40-man roster, and another 10 coming to camp on non-roster invitations. The follow-on question to who’s about to get moved is, of course, which eight will begin the season in the bullpen?”"
Based on numbers, the team has enough arms to make things interesting this spring. With veterans on the roster in Jarlin Garcia, Ryne Stanek, Adam Conley, Jeff Brigham, and Jose Quijada, the coaching staff does have important decisions to make starting in less than a month.
Those decisions will affect how the bullpen works. The Marlins must also find a fifth starter in the rotation. But the needs of the back end of the pitching staff are far greater than the front line. The front office did the right thing to address those first before the team gets to camp in less than a month.