Lucky 13 pitchers
Out of necessity, the Marlins are now carrying 13 pitchers for the first time this season.
The roster moves became official on Saturday as outfielder Brett Carroll was optioned to Triple-A New Orleans, clearing way for lefty Andrew Miller to be reinstated off the DL.
Miller joins the rotation and he made the start against the Dodgers on Saturday at Land Shark Stadium.
“I feel more comfortable with 13,” manager Fredi Gonzalez said of keeping an extra pitcher. “The way we’ve been using our bullpen.”
Kiko Calero has 21 appearances, while Renyel Pinto has 20. Leo Nunez and Dan Meyer each are at 16. So to preserve the bullpen, an extra pitcher was kept.
“We haven’t even played 40 games yet,” Gonzalez said. “We have a pretty long stretch of games here. Obviously, it’s a double-edge sword. We had been using Carroll defensively at the end of the game. But we feel the extra arm helps. Having that extra arm is going to protect.”
The flip side is Gonzalez’s bench moves are limited. Before, he could pinch hit in the fifth inning and not worry about his bench being thin.
The team is banking on Chris Coghlan picking up defensively in left field. He is a converted infielder, who is in the process of learning the outfield. Carroll had been used as a replacement for Coghlan in the outfield.
“I don’t think [Coghlan] is that far away that he is a defensive liability,” Gonzalez said.
— Joe Frisaro