Miami Marlins may have a surprise rotation candidate...
The Miami Marlins have been considering a 6 man rotation and there may now be a better case for it. The Fish have five spots filled with the rotation consisting of Sandy Alcantara, Trevor Rogers, Jesús Luzardo, Edward Cabrera and Johnny Cueto. This of course doesn't leave much room for another arm in it. Or does it? I wrote about him before and how he was breaking out... well should Braxton Garrett then end up in the rotation?
Braxton Garrett wants a shot at the Miami Marlins rotation.
The Miami Marlins rotation seems pretty set. The reigning NL Cy Young award winner Sandy Alcantara is obviously not going anywhere. New signing Johnny Cueto is coming off a season in which he delivered a 3.35 ERA/3.79 FIP in 158.1 innings pitched. He's a lock to stay in the rotation as well. Jesús Luzardo delivered a 3.32 ERA/3.12 ERA in 100.1 innings, and with his former top prospect status and 96.1 mph fastball, he's not going anywhere either, though his injury history makes it unfortunately likely that he will miss some time.
Trevor Rogers is an interesting case, as he was elite in 2021 with a 2.64 ERA/2.55 FIP in 133.0 innings. He was terrible with a 5.47 ERA/4.35 FIP in 107.0 innings in 2022. However, a back injury was the reason for his results. Trevor Rogers would have to struggle once again to lose his rotation spot, something that I don't really see happening. The best chance for Braxton Garrett to make the rotation is probably if Edward Cabrera ends up struggling.
Cabrera had a 3.01 ERA/4.59 FIP in 71.2 innings pitched in 2022. The FIP and the walk rate (4.1/9) are the reasons why there is a chance that he'll struggle. I don't want that to happen, and honestly don't think that it will even really happen. He had a 9.4 K/9 and already improved his BB/9 from 6.5 in 2021 to 4.1 in 2022. Cabrera's likely innings limit might be a bigger reason why Braxton Garrett could get some innings.
What about Braxton Garrett? I talked about the rest of the rotation but what about him? He had a 3.58 ERA/3.56 FIP with 9.2 K/9 and 2.5 BB/9 in 88.0 innings pitched in 2022. His ERA has actually dropped annually since his debut in 2020 (5.87 to 5.03 and then 3.58). Garrett's FIP has dropped annually too from 8.15 to 4.38 and finally to 3.56. This is very promising.
Braxton Garrett says that he's trying to get a rotation spot. I think that he might be a better option than most think, and that he can in fact end up getting meaningful innings in 2023.