The Marlins announced a handful of roster moves Wednesday, designating righty Johan Quezada for assignment and selecting the contract of lefty Devin Smeltzer (who’d cleared outright waivers earlier today) in his place. Miami also placed first baseman Garrett Cooper on the injured list due to an inner ear infection and recalled outfielder Peyton Burdick from Triple-A.
The Quezada/Smeltzer swap is a swift reversal of the Marlins’ transaction earlier this week, wherein Smeltzer was designated for assignment and Quezada was selected from Triple-A. Quezada was tagged for three runs and issued five walks in just two-thirds of an inning during his lone appearance before the DFA. Smeltzer, meanwhile, would’ve had the right to reject that outright assignment, but the promise of an immediate call back to the big leagues surely made it easy for him to accept and remain with the organization.
The 27-year-old Smeltzer posted a 6.75 ERA in 12 innings with the Marlins prior to his DFA, though the bulk of that damage came in one mop-up relief outing. He’s tossed seven innings of one-run ball prior to his initial removal from the 40-man roster and carries an overall 4.20 ERA in 152 career innings at the MLB level, most of which came with the Twins. He’s never missed many bats (career 16.4% strikeout rate) but has good command (6.4% walk rate) and has worked as both a starter and reliever in his career.
Cooper, 32, got out to a productive start but has slumped of late. He’s still hitting a respectable .272/.306/.413 on the season, but that’s a ways off the quietly strong .274/.350/.444 he’s turned in over the past four seasons. Cooper’s production at the plate would surely garner more attention if he were able to stay in the lineup with a greater degree of regularity, but trips to the injured list are nothing new for him. Just dating back to the 2021 season, he’s missed time due to a broken finger, a concussion, an elbow sprain, a lumbar strain and a wrist injury. Since 2019, he’s played in just 61.6% of the Marlins’ total games.
Burdick made his big league debut last year but struggled, batting .207/.284/.380 in his first 102 big league plate appearances. The 26-year-old is on a blistering hot streak in Triple-A Jacksonville, however, hitting .293/.381/.636 overall and an even gaudier .365/.429/.810 with eight homers over his past 15 games. For a Marlins club that could badly use some more offensive production — particularly in right field, where Avisail Garcia has again struggled — it’s worth finding out if he can carry any of that over to the big league level.
Death, Taxes and Cooper hitting the IL
I hope Burdick is given a real shot and forces Ng to release Avi.
Why why why does Garrett Cooper have job security?
Dear gosh, they better not give the guy an extension at the end of the season.
The way the Marlins churn AAAA players through outright assignments is absurd to me. They’re the only franchise that does this with any regularity
Smeltzer? I hardly knew’er;
An ear infection? Coopers yearly IL stint starts with an ear infection…
I was thinking it would be a strain of the cutaneous or stubbing his toe on a blade of grass.
Seriously, why the heck does this guy have job security?