Tag: Leo Nunez

Florida Marlins: 5 People the Marlins Must Drop in Order to Succeed in 2012

With a young team, a pair of superstars and a new stadium set to open in 2012, the Florida Marlins are poised to begin a new chapter in their short but illustrious history. 

While the 2011 season was set to be a year full of promise, the young Marlins could not live up to the weight of their own early season expectations and squandered the chance to be in the Wildcard chase with a historically bad month of June.

In retrospect, it’s obvious that while the team has some legitimately talented pieces in Gaby Sanchez, Mike Stanton, Josh Johnson and Hanley Ramirez to build around, with top prospect Matt Dominguez on the way, there’s still quite a few holes the franchise needs to plug before taking the next step.

Here’s a few folks who should probably be thrown overboard if the Miami faithful wants to see their boys bring home a third World Series title.

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MLB Trade Rumors: Florida Marlins Gauging Interest of Ricky Nolasco, Leo Nunez

The Florida Marlins might be at it again, this time with a possible trade of Ricky Nolasco and Leo Nunez

According to Clark Spencer of the Miami Herald, the Marlins are “gauging interest” in starting pitcher Nolasco and closer Leo Nunez.

For months on end, the team has been trying to get extend Nolasco to a deal that would buy out two arbitration years and one year of free agency.

However, such talks have stalled because the two sides are far apart on a salary figures.

It shouldn’t come as a surprise to gauge the interest of both pitchers in a pitcher-thin market.

The high market teams such as the New York Yankees, Texas Rangers and Los Angeles Angels have targeted Cliff Lee with no significant ground made in talks and the loser of those talks could want to trade for a top of the rotation pitcher like Nolasco. 

Such trade could yield a better return now when teams are most desperate to land an arm, but the Marlins aren’t committed to trading either pitcher if they don’t find the right deal.

Essentially, if talks don’t work out, it won’t become a Dan Uggla situation all over again. 

However, because both pitchers are arbitration-eligible this winter (Nolasco is under club control for 2011 and 2012 and Nunez is under club control for 2011 only), dealing them both in a package deal would make sense if it can fulfill a need such as centerfield while also giving the ballclub more money to spend, anywhere from $6 to $10 million.



Nolasco had a 14-9 record, 4.51 ERA, and 147 strikeouts with the Marlins, but unless the Marlins can get a significant return, he more than likely will return to the team in 2011. 

Nunez, on the other hand, struggled with the closers role last season and could garner some interest on the trade market.

He had a 4-3 record with 30 saves (in 38 opportunities) with 3.46 ERA and lost the job to Clay Hensley down the stretch.

He might be more of a salary dump which could allow the team to patch other areas of need (i.e. bench and bullpen) with about $4 million to spend.

Chances are he is likely to be traded to a team who might try him as the closer or setup man (i.e. Kevin Gregg to the Cubs and Matt Lindstrom to the Astros) for their club next season.

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Florida Marlins Offseason Checklist: A Fan Guide To What Needs To Happen

With what essentially was a three-game sweep at the hands of the NL East-leading Philadelphia Phillies, the Florida Marlins can officially kiss their last playoff hopes goodbye.

The ship began sailing when Ricky Nolasco went down and now recently with Josh Johnson and his back. JJ might be shut down to avoid any further injury when the team is no longer in the race. 

Entering the final offseason of the Sun Life (aka Pro Player, Dolphin, or Joe Robbie) Stadium era, the Marlins face an uphill battle to turn this team back to their winning ways in lieu of a new stadium in 2012.

It will be quite the extreme makeover of sorts from this season and Opening Day 2012 and a whole lot needs to happen in order to have fans even consider buying a Marlins ticket with Heat and Dolphins tickets the hot items in South Florida. 

Here is what the Marlins need to and what I believe they should do to address it. 

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Florida Marlins Roster 2013: A Reason For Marlins Fans To Be Excited

I know, its three seasons away, and with the money Jeffrey Loria has that he isn’t spending, it seems ridiculous that we’d even have to wait that long for a another playoff berth, and we might not, but by 2013 this team will be one of the most potent in all of baseball.

They will continue to compete this year and will have similar seasons for the next two years, be in it until middle of September but never really have a solid chance.

The Braves look like they might have a few years of power in them and the Phillies will continue to be a contender, but by 2013, look for the Fish to be a serious NL powerhouse.

By that time, they’ll have moved into their fancy new ballpark and maybe actually draw some fans to their games. This is my ideal roster for 2013. Granted, they make make moves and lose/bring in names that could shake this up but just using the current roster and prospects now, take a look:

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MLB Fantasy Baseball Closing Situations: Looking at the NL East Closers

Over the next week or two I will be taking a division-by-division look at every team’s closer situation.  Who is closing now?  Who is next in line?  Who could get a look down the line?  Let’s kick things off with the NL East:

Atlanta Braves
Closer Billy Wagner
Waiting in the Wings in 2010 – Takashi Saito
Closer of the Future – Craig Kimbrel

There’s no controversy here, as Wagner has been dominant all season long.  Not only is he sporting a miniscule 1.74 ERA and 0.89 WHIP, but he’s posted 72 strikeouts over 51.2 innings.  Saito will get an opportunity now and then, when Wagner needs a rest, but that’s about it. 

Given the age of both Wagner and Saito, Kimbrel is an integral part of the Braves’ future bullpen.  He has been dominant at Triple-A (1.50 ERA, 68 K over 48.0 innings) and in a brief stint in the Major Leagues (1.08 ERA, 15 K over 8.1 innings) this season.  Control could be an issue, but his pure stuff certainly portrays closer ability.

Florida Marlins

Closer – Leo Nunez
Waiting in the Wings in 2010 – Clay Hensley
Closer of the Future – Alejandro Ramos?

Nunez gave up four earned runs over three innings in his first three outings of August, but has been clean for his last three outings (allowing just one walk over three innings) prior to last night.  If Nunez struggles again, Hensley could get a look, but at 30-years old, he’s not likely a long-term solution. 

The fact is, the Marlins don’t have a clear-cut closer of the future.  Single-A closer Alejandro Ramos has posted 26 saves with a 3.83 ERA and 75 Ks over 56.1 innings, but he turns 24 in September, clearly pitching against younger competition.  It’s certainly more likely that they look outside of the organization for a 2011 replacement.


New York Mets
Closer – Hisanori Takahashi
Waiting in the Wings – Bobby Parnell
Closer of the Future – Bobby Parnell

It’s quite the void that Francisco Rodriguez and his off-the-field antics have created at the back end of the Mets bullpen.  While Takahashi is currently getting the chance, all signs point to Parnell potentially being a long-term solution for the Mets. 

With K-Rod’s future unknown, look for Parnell, who reportedly was clocked at over 100 mph on the gun last night, to get a look.  He’s well worth stashing, just in case.  Chances are Rodriguez will be back in 2011, but at this point anything is possible.

Philadelphia Phillies

Closer – Brad Lidge
Waiting in the Wings – Ryan Madson
Closer of the Future – Ryan Madson

Brad Lidge is not the closer he once was, but the Phillies continue to lean on him.  He’s pitched just 27.1 innings, with a 4.28 ERA and 1.35 WHIP.  Madson is perennially the second in line, when healthy, though both he and Lidge have been on the DL at times this season. 

While he has not always been lights-out when given the chance to close games, Madson has been good, overall, for four years running now.  At 29-years old, it is safe to think that he could be the solution, if given the chance.

Washington Nationals

Closer – Drew Storen
Waiting in the Wings – Tyler Clippard
Closer of the Future – Drew Storen

The deadline deal of Matt Capps allowed the Nationals to get a look at their future closer today.  Drafted in the first round of the 2009 draft, he has been solid thus far.  He’s had one bad outing in August, but he has posted a 2.57 ERA and 0.86 WHIP in six appearances (seven innings).  He’s the long-term solution, so take your shot with him.

What are your thoughts on these situations?

Make sure to check out our extremely early 2011 rankings:


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MLB Trade Rumors: Red Sox, Marlins Talk Deal For Cody Ross, Leo Nunez

According to multiple reports channeled through MLBTradeRumors.com, the Boston Red Sox have joined the New York Yankees in trade discussions for Florida Marlin OF Cody Ross and RP Leo Nunez.

Both players represent affordable fixes for the Red Sox’ myriad bullpen and outfield woes. As is well known, beyond closer Jonathan Papelbon and setup man Daniel Bard, the piecemeal Red Sox bullpen has been horrible, and the outfield has been riddled with injury.

Keeping in mind that the Red Sox have breached the luxury tax threshold, cost may be as important to the team as is productivity. Ross earned a 2010 salary of $4.45 million through arbitration, and Nunez avoided arbitration by signing a one-year, $2 million contract.

Ross has approximately $1.97 million remaining on his contract, and Nunez is still owed approximately $887,000. Paying a 22.5 percent tax on every dollar over $170 million, the Red Sox would have to shell out about $3.5 million to acquire both Marlins.

Acknowledging that financial factor, both Ross and Nunez could contribute significantly to the Red Sox as they try to stay within reach of the New York Yankees and Tampa Bay Rays in the fiercely competitive American League East.

Ross is hitting .279 and slugging at a depressed .409 clip. Defensively, Ross has proved himself well above average at both corner outfield positions this year, according to UZR/150.

Enjoying a career year, Nunez is fanning more than a batter an inning and owns a 2.79 ERA and a 1.06 WHIP.

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What to Do With the Florida Marlins Bullpen?

Many times after jumping out to a sizable lead, the Florida Marlins’ bullpen gives fans a reason to be nervous; no matter how many innings the starter pitches.

The bullpen hasn’t been properly address by Flordia’s front office. 

Most good teams have a strong bullpen. In 2007 the Philadelphia Phillies won the World Series thanks to a stellar bullpen. They rarely let leads slip away.

The exact opposite is happening to Florida this season.

In my opinion, the Marlins’ pen is just stuffed with useless Triple A rejects, that we frankly have never heard of. If these guys could produce then it would be a different story, but they don’t.

The Marlins just cannot find a consistent seventh to eighth inning guy, something that needs corrected in order to start a mid-season comeback..

Its time for Florida to stop thinking about the offensive and management problems and invest its time in finding some consistent bullpen help.

Sounds easy. Well it really isn’t that hard.

The Marlins are full of young talent, including some prospects that I consider expendable or useful for trades. I say now is time to make a trade giving the club a strong lefty pitcher, and a well known eighth inning guy.

For the lefty I would like to make a controversial move: get Dontrelle Willis.

He was traded to the Arizona Diamond Backs and he hasn’t found that much success there. He also has recently been moved to the pen. 

If the Diamond Backs aren’t pleased with his progress, I would strongly suggest for the Marlins to trade for him.

Willis could go back to where he was once successful and maybe make a new name for himself as a lefty specialist. If he progresses, who knows maybe a spot in the rotation awaits.

The other move that I would make involves signing a free agent.

David Weathers would be an option for me.

To sign him, it would mainly depend on what his physical conditions and throwing ability. If he proves that he can throw strikes, then the Marlins should definitely let him rejoin his old team. 

The Marlins last season signed Brendan Donnelly, a 40-year-old who had almost run out of options, but when he came to the team began to producing.

My last option is not a very realistic option, but it should be heavily considered.

The Marlins have always had big interest in Matt Capps, and he is having a banner season.

The problem is that the Washingtpn Nationals are certainly hesitant to trade him. But if the Nats are out of playoff contention, then the Marlins should definitely inquire about him.

He may not be the closer for the Marlins, but would be a definite lock for the set up man role. That would give Florida a great level of stability.

All of the options mentioned are part of some wishful thinking, but the Marlins definitely need to get serious in order to get to the playoffs.

If the Marlins can get back on track then we should see a lot more consistency on the field.


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