The Marlins seem to be “leaning toward” only breaking camp with one of Yuli Gurriel or Jose Iglesias, according to Barry Jackson and Craig Mish of the Miami Herald. The two veterans recently signed minor league contracts and joined the Marlins’ spring camp as non-roster invitees, and perhaps due to that late start (both players signed on March 9), it isn’t unsurprising that neither Gurriel or Iglesias have hit well in their small sample size of Spring Training at-bats. A decision will have to be made soon, since both Gurriel and Iglesias can enact opt-out clauses in their minor league deals if Miami doesn’t let them know who or who isn’t making the Opening Day roster.
Gurriel was signed to either back up Garrett Cooper at first base or (perhaps ideally) join in at least a timeshare, if Cooper stays healthy and Gurriel rebounds to his pre-2022 levels of offense. Miami signed Iglesias to provide further depth at shortstop, since after Miguel Rojas was traded to the Dodgers, utilityman Joey Wendle is expected to handle the bulk of shortstop duty despite a relative lack of experience at the position.
Of the two, it would seem like Gurriel has the advantage, Jackson noted in a tweet today. Manager Skip Schumaker suggested that utilityman Jon Berti could be utilized at shortstop against left-handed pitching while Wendle faced righties, which might be a cleaner situation for the Marlins than including Iglesias on the roster and finding him playing time. In terms of other shortstop candidates, the Fish have also already selected the contract of another minor league signing in Garrett Hampson, plus Jordan Groshans and Jacob Amaya are at Triple-A.
The club’s decision on Gurriel or Iglesias is also influenced by the fact that both Jesus Sanchez and Bryan De La Cruz now seem like good bets to make the Opening Day roster. It already seemed like Sanchez (who is out of minor league options) would make the room, but De La Cruz’s status was a little more tenuous since he still has a minor league option remaining. This means that Miami might eventually send De La Cruz to Triple-A at some point in 2023, but using De La Cruz and Sanchez in a left field platoon seems like the team’s preferred opening heading into Opening Day. Having an extra outfielder on the roster is also helpful since Jorge Soler will mostly be a DH this season, and Jazz Chisholm’s ability to stick as the regular center fielder is still up in the air, given his lack of experience at the position.
Returning to the first base picture, the position remains a long-term question for the Marlins. Jackson and Mish report that the team hasn’t had any talks with Cooper about an extension, making it seem likely that Cooper will hit free agency as scheduled following the 2023 season. Given Cooper’s age (32), injury history, and his past linkage to some trade rumors, it isn’t surprising that Miami is perhaps looking to move onwards, though Cooper has been a quietly productive player when healthy. Before signing Gurriel, the Marlins explored some bigger-name first base options this offseason, including such free agents and trade targets as Jose Abreu, Josh Bell, and Triston Casas. Depending on how the Chisholm/center field experiment plays out, it is also possible that the Marlins might ultimately install Luis Arraez back at first base.
MARLINS are on their way to their 3rd World Series title by 2027 at the latest. And they never got enough credit for winning 2 in their first 10 years of existence.
Is this a different World Series than the one played in October?
Like alternate universe type? That’s the only World Series the Marlins are winning by 2027
The real world series, unlike the fake one that the Dodgers “won” in 2020.
Living rent free in your otherwise empty head
You mean the one that had more playoffs rounds and games than every single other one? You can certainly make fun of the 2020 regular season but you sound like a moron sayin that about the 2020 postseason.
Right, the ridiculous, 60 game bubble season that wasn’t played in front of fans and was structured vastly differently than a real MLB season is. 2020 is a sham World Series and Clayton Chokeshaw (Clayton Kershaw) still doesn’t have a real World Series ring and never will have one and everyone knows it. PS funny how Trea (who actually has a real WS ring) laughed his ass off about Clayton Chokeshaw and the Dodgers after leaving- zero respect for them.
I don’t care about 2020 or the Dodgers. The best position player on the Marlins just moved from second base to centerfield and looks completely lost. Their best pitcher will be traded before 2027. Their farm system is ranked 18th, payroll is 24th with ZERO chance of going up and their ownership DOES NOT CARE ABOUT WINNING.
It’s really that last part that matters the most. I wish all teams were competitive and cared and wanted to win and spend money. But that’s not the case.
If the Marlins have a winning record by 2027 I’d be shocked.
Since the Yankees and the Mets dominate the WS every year I believe you
Motor City Beach Bum
Hey, remember that time you guys traded us Miguel Cabrera 😉 That was your last best hope for another World Series.
I do agree they did not get enough credit for those 2 wins though.
Arraez at 2B is just a disaster waiting to happen, especially with the shift ban. Move him back to 1B, trade Cooper to the Phils or use him at DH and move Soler, use Segura where he belongs at 2nd, and use Berti/Wendle at 3rd where THEY belong. Don’t overthink this.
And what set off this Chinese fire drill of new positions …… inability to find a centerfielder. It doesn’t seem that complicated, and by the way I endorse your repositioning of players. The sad thing is that after Jazz gets nicked again, it will be Sanchez back out in center again. The Phillies would be a good landing spot for Cooper they are used to lousy defense at first, and need a one year plug in.
Cooper would likely hit 20+ bombs in Philly – much better place to hit than Miami.
Cooper needs to stay healthy to hit 20 HRs.
Cody Bellinger was the 2nd best CF this offseason. He got 17M or whatever basically based on his glove and a prayer
It’s not like the league is flooded with decent CF options…
Why? Arraez’s range is average according to Statcast. By OAA he was above average overall at 2B last season. He has been an above average at 2B by DRS the last 2 seasons. Arraez was traded for to play 2B. He has played 2B all spring and in the WBC. You are definitely overthinking this.
Both Wendle and Cooper are injury prone. Honestly they should find a way to keep both Iglesias and Gurriel. Wondering if a 40 man spot would need to be created for both. If so I’d prefer Iglesias over Hampson.
Hampson can at least swipe a bag. Iglesias doesn’t even play great D anymore. Can’t hit at all either. Groshans should get a look if Wendle is hurt. At least there’s the upside with that
Yuli to the Phils or Twins if the Marlins cut him?
Gurriel because of Cooper’s injury history. They can cover SS.
I got a Gurriel haircut and the goggle sunglasses. Somehow it was not cool for me.
Come to think of it, not cool on him either but he can hit a 98 mph fastball.
It’s laughable that part of the article mentions that the Marlins haven’t had an extension talk with Cooper. That kind of goes without saying. The guy has been on the IL pretty much every season. He’s not a star player. Many Marlins fans (myself included) can’t wait until the Marlins move on from him. Again, laughable to even mention that.
We take what we can get here in terms of “star power”. Its for the same reason fans loved Brian Anderson even though he was only a slightly above average player during his best years. That being said, a 6’5 1B should absolutely be able to hit for more power than Cooper has ever shown the ability to hit for regardless of where he plays. Once he is finally gone, good riddance, should’ve happened years ago.
And yes, Brian Anderson is only slightly above average, but really good defensively. Decent supporting cast piece. I would’ve preferred keeping him.
And yes, Cooper should have been gon2 at least two years ago. It’s amazing how much job security he’s had here for such a very replaceable player. He’s the position player version of Tim Koehler – another player who had job security that didn’t make sense.
If iglesias is waived I’d like the braves to pick him up, him and arcia is better than arcia as md adrianza.
“it isn’t unsurprising that neither”? The rare triple negative isn’t not something you don’t see very often!