Marlins prospect Jazz Chisholm has won the opening day second base job. General Manager Kim Ng made the announcement on the radio, noting that Isan Diaz, Chisholm’s main competition for the role, will begin the year in Triple-A, per Jordan McPherson and Craig Mish of the Miami Herald (Twitter links).
Chisholm, of course, was acquired via trade from the Diamondbacks for Zac Gallen at the 2019 trade deadline. Gallen’s spring injury aside, he has generally flourished in Arizona. Chisholm and the Marlins have work to do to make this deal look like a strong one for Miami. After finishing 2019 at Double-A with a .220/.321/.441 line, Chisholm made his Major League debut in 2020 under sub-optimal circumstances. In 62 plate appearances over 21 games, Chisholm hit just .161/.242/.321. He has game-changing speed, but the bat will need to follow to make good on his top prospect status. He is the Marlins’ 4th-ranked prospect, per Baseball America.
Diaz, meanwhile, was a slight favorite to start the year at second, but he struggled this spring going just 4-for-22 with seven walks to thirteen strikeouts. He has 223 plate appearances in the Majors between 2019 and 2020, owning a triple slash of .174/.251/.294. He has struck out in close to 30 percent of his plate appearances while walking at an average 8.5 percent clip. Still just 24-years-old, Diaz will head to Triple-A to await his next opportunity.