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Sunday, March 31, 2013

Injuries prompt Miami Marlins to add pitching prospect Jose Fernandez, 20, to opening day roster

Kevin Slowey? Donovan Solano? John Maine? Alex Sanabia? I’ve never heard of half these guys, and the ones I have heard of are way past their primes!

The Miami Marlins knew their young pitching staff would be a work in progress this season. But no one expected major changes a day before the season opener.

The Marlins this morning announced that 20-year-old super-prospect Jose Fernandez, a right-hander, will be on the opening day roster because of shoulder injuries to starters Nathan Eovaldi and Henderson Alvarez.

Fernandez, who finished last season with Class A Jupiter, will start next Sunday’s game against the Mets in New York.

The pitching matchup for Monday’s opener at Washington (1:05 p.m., FSN) is Ricky Nolasco — the only veteran in Miami’s rotation — against Stephen Strasburg.

Eovaldi and Alvarez are on the disabled list. The other pitcher joining the staff is minor leaguer Alex Sanabia, who was 5-3 with the Marlins in 2010.

 

RoyalsRetro (AG#1F) Posted: March 31, 2013 at 10:33 AM | 24 comment(s) Login to Bookmark
  Tags: jose fernandez, marlins, prospects

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   1. winnipegwhip Posted: March 31, 2013 at 04:26 PM (#4400254)
Good for him. A few good starts and he will be packaged with Stanton in the June deal.
   2. Swedish Chef Posted: March 31, 2013 at 04:50 PM (#4400268)
Good for him. A few good starts and he will be packaged with Stanton in the June deal.

Surely they will use him to sweeten the Nolasco deal. That's $11 million I'm sure Loria can use.
   3. Gamingboy Posted: March 31, 2013 at 05:27 PM (#4400279)
Good for him. A few good starts and he will be packaged with Stanton in the June deal.

Surely they will use him to sweeten the Nolasco deal. That's $11 million I'm sure Loria can use.


But what of Steve Cishek?
   4. Chase Insteadman Wannabe Posted: March 31, 2013 at 08:21 PM (#4400413)
I seem to recall reading an article several years ago about how Tampa Bay had become so good at developing pitchers. Maybe it was in Baseball America? Or perhaps it was while Jonah Keri was working on a Devil Rays book? Anyway, the part that really stuck in my mind was that when new ownership took over and a new GM was installed, they did not fire everyone who had controlled player development--although they would have been justified in doing so. Instead they sat them all down and asked, "What did you guys do wrong?" The response was that any time they had a talented pitcher, they rushed him to the major leagues because the weakness of the major league team meant that the youngster was genuinely one of the best pitchers the Devil Rays had. And so it was that one of the trademarks of the Rays development system became their slow, cautious movement of pitchers through the minors in order to make sure they were ready before joining the big boys of the majors. All of which is a long way of saying that while I know Fernandez is supposed to be quite advanced for a 20 year old, I hope the Marlins are sure that he's ready for this.
   5. Jim Wisinski Posted: March 31, 2013 at 09:17 PM (#4400464)
The response was that any time they had a talented pitcher, they rushed him to the major leagues because the weakness of the major league team meant that the youngster was genuinely one of the best pitchers the Devil Rays had.


Also known as "Chuck Lamar was a terrible GM and constantly tried to make it look like he was actually accomplishing something"
   6. Jim Wisinski Posted: March 31, 2013 at 09:21 PM (#4400470)
Kevin Slowey? Donovan Solano? John Maine? Alex Sanabia? I’ve never heard of half these guys, and the ones I have heard of are way past their primes!


I mentioned it in the game thread but it fits here too; anyone assuming that the Astros are a lock for being the worst team in the majors is forgetting about how bad the Marlins could easily be. Only 14 more wins than the Astros last year and they traded away almost every significant contributor except Stanton. Plus they're having injury problems already.
   7. Jack Carter, calling Beleaguered Castle Posted: March 31, 2013 at 09:22 PM (#4400471)
@4... but, do they really move pitchers through the minors more slowly than other teams? I'm having a tough time believing this is the only reason for their success with pitchers.
   8. Chase Insteadman Wannabe Posted: April 01, 2013 at 12:21 AM (#4400605)
but, do they really move pitchers through the minors more slowly than other teams? I'm having a tough time believing this is the only reason for their success with pitchers.

They definitely move them slowly. I know I heard Baseball America talking about that when Matt Moore was destroying the minors in 2011. That said, I do not know how their speed compares with other organizations.

I also did not mean to imply that it is only the speed of their promotions that has lead to the Devil Rays' success developing pitchers. No matter how quickly The Mets moved Chad Bowen through the minors, he was not going to turn into Matt Moore. But there are no lessons to learn from good scouting other than it's good to have good scouts, which I think we all know. I don't know how much difference rate of movement makes for players. I think it would make a fascinating study, but given the difficulty of identifying all the different variables that can cause a player to succeed or fail, even if I had the time to conduct such a study, I would not have the patience. But based on my own unscientific, entirely biased observations, I personally favor cautious promotion.
   9. Chase Insteadman Wannabe Posted: April 01, 2013 at 12:27 AM (#4400610)
but, do they really move pitchers through the minors more slowly than other teams? I'm having a tough time believing this is the only reason for their success with pitchers.

They definitely move them slowly. I know I heard Baseball America talking about that when Matt Moore was destroying the minors in 2011. That said, I do not know how their speed compares with other organizations.

I also did not mean to imply that it is only the speed of their promotions that has lead to the Devil Rays' success developing pitchers. No matter how quickly The Mets moved Chad Bowen through the minors, he was not going to turn into Matt Moore. But there are no lessons to learn from good scouting other than it's good to have good scouts, which I think we all know. I don't know how much difference rate of movement makes for players. I think it would make a fascinating study, but given the difficulty of identifying all the different variables that can cause a player to succeed or fail, even if I had the time to conduct such a study, I would not have the patience. But based on my own unscientific, entirely biased observations, I personally favor cautious promotion.
   10. jdennis Posted: April 01, 2013 at 12:30 AM (#4400611)
what i don't get is why they stick their very top prospects in low A to start, then debate over how fast to bring them up the levels. sometimes you see guys getting the september call up after being in A-ball to start the previous year, or you see them be in A ball for 3-4 years, then half a season at AA, half at AAA, then the majors. they are super cautious to start, then go as fast as they can.

me, if i bring up a hotshot guy too fast i do it at the front end. i would just stick them right in AA and if they don't put up the numbers, they don't put up the numbers, and they stay there.
   11. Jack Carter, calling Beleaguered Castle Posted: April 01, 2013 at 12:52 AM (#4400617)
@8: thanks for the clarification. On of the reasons it does make sense for a poor organization to move players slowly is that it presumably means they're paying the same money at the major league level for better performance, and they can probably eke out a bit more in trade value for their young guys, as well.

@10: I can see putting one of two otherwise identical-seeming top prospects in low A versus AA if the issue is something like that player needing to develop a third pitch in a low stress environment. In a case like that the long view is that you don't want him thinking about getting guys out; you want him focused on developing a major league change up, or whatever it might be. Other aspects to take into account are your coaching personnel. There might be the perfect guy for a given player at low A versus high A. You might also be interfering with other players' development by putting a guy here rather than there. Keep in mind, too, that often the cream of your organization is in AA; AAA is often reserved for old guys, AAAA guys, and so on.
   12. Commissioner Bud Black Beltre Hillman Posted: April 01, 2013 at 01:15 AM (#4400619)
Re: 10 + 11 -- even beyond developing pitches, it's worth considering whether being exposed to successively higher levels of competition is as important to pitcher development as for hitters. Facing adversity, getting rocked and coming back is definitely an experience they all should have; but make-up aside, a team can be pretty damn sure a kid's got MLB stuff even if he's facing A ball hitters. Identifying someone with high potential and keeping them in one place to put all the pieces together without worrying about competing for a spot or a promotion, and then climb the system seems like a reasonable development plan for certain players, particularly ones you're grooming to start.
   13. Drexl Spivey Posted: April 01, 2013 at 01:44 AM (#4400622)
Surely they will use him to sweeten the Nolasco deal. That's $11 million I'm sure Loria can use.


The Marlins aren't being cheap here. They're starting the arby clock on an absolute stud of a pitcher.

It's a pretty dumb move (financially). This guy is capable of dominating right out of the gate. If that were to happen it would cost the Marlins a lot in the long run (compared to starting him off in the minors for a few weeks).



   14. Swedish Chef Posted: April 01, 2013 at 02:30 AM (#4400623)
If that were to happen it would cost the Marlins a lot in the long run (compared to starting him off in the minors for a few weeks).

As soon as he tweets something insufficiently reverent towards the club they can send him down again for a while.
   15. Drexl Spivey Posted: April 01, 2013 at 03:01 AM (#4400625)
As soon as he tweets something insufficiently reverent towards the club they can send him down again for a while.


I get the joke, but sending the guy down after a dominant start to the season would have to cause the MLBPA to retaliate in some way. That would be pretty interesting.

   16. RoyalsRetro (AG#1F) Posted: April 01, 2013 at 09:01 AM (#4400681)

The Marlins aren't being cheap here. They're starting the arby clock on an absolute stud of a pitcher.

It's a pretty dumb move (financially). This guy is capable of dominating right out of the gate.


I think its doubtful he's on the team for more than a few weeks. Even if he dominates (which is unlikely) they'll send him down to "refine his pitches" or something like that.
   17. JJ1986 Posted: April 01, 2013 at 09:06 AM (#4400682)
Eovaldi coming back should be enough pretense to send him down however well he's doing.
   18. puck Posted: April 01, 2013 at 11:18 AM (#4400799)
They definitely move them slowly. I know I heard Baseball America talking about that when Matt Moore was destroying the minors in 2011. That said, I do not know how their speed compares with other organizations.

Sports Illustrated's baseball preview issue has an article on the Rays' development of pitchers, and it does mention bringing pitchers along slowly. No numbers/case studies/counterexamples, though, so I guess it would be interesting to see if they really do do this.

I don't know when their articles hit the website, but it might be an interesting thing to post.

   19. snapper (history's 42nd greatest monster) Posted: April 01, 2013 at 11:38 AM (#4400814)
I get the joke, but sending the guy down after a dominant start to the season would have to cause the MLBPA to retaliate in some way. That would be pretty interesting.

What exactly? These are the rules they negotiated.
   20. spycake Posted: April 01, 2013 at 12:15 PM (#4400864)
David Price wasn't brought along slowly. Matt Moore arguably wasn't either, once he really started pushing the envelope with his performance. Hellickson and Cobb have brought along steadily. So were Niemann and Davis, I suppose.

Damn, they've drafted some damn fine pitchers. Hard to argue with their scouting or development, regardless of whether they're bring them along slowly or not.
   21. spycake Posted: April 01, 2013 at 12:18 PM (#4400872)
What exactly? These are the rules they negotiated.

Hasn't the union filed grievances for players demoted for non-performance reasons? Not to say that those had much if any effect. JJ Hardy and Glen Perkins a few years ago spring to mind, although both were struggling at the MLB level at the time.

Interesting question: what's the best performance for a player at the time they were demoted to the minor leagues?
   22. snapper (history's 42nd greatest monster) Posted: April 01, 2013 at 12:26 PM (#4400883)
Hasn't the union filed grievances for players demoted for non-performance reasons? Not to say that those had much if any effect.

Sure, but the Marlins have an easy defense here.

They just say they think Fernandez is ready on talent, but at 20 y.o. he's not ready for a full major league work load. They want to limit his pitches and innings in the minors to protect his health, and they can't do that as much as they want in the MLB rotation.

That could be total BS, but with the way young pitchers are handled with kid gloves, I don't see how an arbitrator dismisses that argument.
   23. JJ1986 Posted: April 01, 2013 at 12:30 PM (#4400889)
I think if Hardy couldn't win his grievance (he was a veteran sent down for exactly the 20 days needed to gain the extra year) then no player ever will be able to.
   24. Mike Emeigh Posted: April 01, 2013 at 12:52 PM (#4400921)
David Price wasn't brought along slowly. Matt Moore arguably wasn't either, once he really started pushing the envelope with his performance.


I agree, pretty much. Both Price and Moore had command issues in the minors, which was why Price was sent to AAA to start 2009 and Moore was moved up slowly until 2011.

-- MWE

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