Rotation shaping up

No official word has been made yet regarding the Marlins rotation, but if the next week’s schedule of games means anything, the candidates are already lined up.

The Marlins on Sunday are starting Ricky Nolasco against the Astros at Roger Dean Stadium. On Monday, Anibal Sanchez will face the Mets in Port St. Lucie. Chris Volstad will throw on Tuesday in Jupiter against the Nationals.

josh-johnson.jpgAce Josh Johnson will take the mound on Wednesday at Port St. Lucie against the Mets. On Thursday, Clay Hensley will start in the final Grapefruit League contest, facing the Cardinals.

Nolasco will pitch against Double-A Jacksonville in Jacksonville. Sanchez gets the call on Saturday afternoon at low Class A Greensboro.

If this order stays in tact, which is expected, the rotation for the first week of the season will be:

April 5 at Mets: Josh Johnson

April 7 at Mets: Ricky Nolasco

April 8 at Mets: Anibal Sanchez

April 9 vs. Dodgers: Opening Night at Sun Life Stadium — Chris Volstad

The April 10 starter will be up on the air. It’s the first Super Saturday of the season, and a big crowd will be on hand.

Because the Marlins are off on April 6, Johnson would be available to face the Dodgers on April 10. The team is being flexible with that date. If Johnson has a non-taxing season opener at the Mets, he could come back and pitch. But if Johnson’s pitch count is high in the opener, and he had some stressful innings, he may instead pitch on Sunday, April 11 against the Dodgers.

How Johnson is will determine when Hensley would pitch. If Johnson pitches on April 10, Hensley would throw on Sunday. Hensley would be the option to throw on April 10 if Johnson throws on Sunday.

— Joe Frisaro


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