Brantly optioned to New Orleans, Hill brought up

ATLANTA — Rob Brantly, the Marlins’ Opening Day starting catcher, has been optioned to Triple-A New Orleans.

The club made the decision after Thursday’s 5-4 loss in 10 innings at Pittsburgh, and the official announcement came on Friday.

In a corresponding move, Koyie Hill had his contract selected from Triple-A New Orleans. Hill, 34, has previous big league experience, appearing in 313 games over nine seasons. In 2012, he appeared in 11 games with the Cubs.

Brantly, 23, has had his share of struggles, at the plate and in the field. He is batting .225 with one home run and 18 RBIs in 59 games.

For a few months, Brantly’s playing time was reduced as Jeff Mathis handled a majority of the catching duties.

The veteran Mathis has regularly been behind the plate for rookie phenom, Jose Fernandez.

Brantly’s most recent start was on Wednesday at Pittsburgh. He was hitless in three at-bats. Prior to then, he hadn’t started since Aug. 3 in a loss to the Indians.

Miami acquired Brantly, along with Jacob Turner and Brian Flynn, from the Tigers on July 23, 2012 for Anibal Sanchez and Omar Infante.

A left-handed hitter, Brantly is a career .280 hitter in the Minor Leagues.

By being sent to Triple-A, Brantly will get a chance to play every day and refine his skills in the field and at the plate.

The Marlins promoted Brantly late last season, and in 31 games and 100 at-bats, he batted .290.

Hill provides a veteran backup presence to Mathis. With New Orleans, he batted .237 with one homer and 14 RBIs.

Joe Frisaro

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