The Miami Marlins had an interesting off-season and it's intriguing to speculate on how the bullpen situation will turn out. In the meantime, Spring Training is underway and three players are not doing particularly well. As we know Spring Training results are rarely indicative of how the season is going to go. That said, it can be telling and does indeed cost some players their jobs. Will any of these three players lose their jobs? Are these results still a concern? Let's start the list...
1. SP JESUS LUZARDO
Jesus Luzardo is struggling in Spring Training.
Jesus Luzardo is a very talented starting pitcher. He was a top prospect and until 2021 and his trade to the Miami Marlins. Luzardo debuted for Oakland in the 2019 season an delivered a 1.50 ERA/2.63 FIP with 12.0 K/9 and 2.3 BB/9 in 6 games and 12.0 innings pitched as a reliever. He switched to starting in 2020, and delivered a 4.12 ERA/4.19 FIP with 9.0 K/9 and 2.6 BB/9 in 12 games (9 starts) and 59.0 innings pitched. This was a disappointing follow-up, but the strikeouts and his top prospect pedigree were still there.
Jesus Luzardo split 2021 between Oakland and the Miami Marlins. He was dreadful that season, delivering a 6.87 ERA/6.09 FIP with 9.5 K/9 and 3.8 BB/9 in 13 games (6 starts) and 38.0 innings pitched for Oakland, and then a 6.44 ERA/5.07 FIP with 9.1 K/9 and 5.0 BB/9 in 12 games and 57.1 innings pitched with The Fish. It looked like another good trade for Oakland, considering Luzardo looked just about done that season. It was really that bad of a performance.
In 2022, Jesus Luzardo delivered a 3.32 ERA/3.12 FIP with 10.8 K/9 and 3.1 BB/9 in 18 games and 100.1 innings pitched. This was an excellent performance and suddenly made him look like a legitimate ace. Going from a pitcher seemingly lucky to be in the Majors to a legitimate ace in just one season. The best part is that the advanced metrics back that up.
How is Luzardo doing so far? He currently has a 5.19 ERA with 10.4 K/9 and 1.0 BB/9 in Spring Training's 3 games and 8.2 innings pitched. The ERA is bad, but the elite K/9 and BB/9 along with the small sample size mean that he's fine and the ERA is misleading.
NEXT: A major acquisition...