Furcal to test leg in Minors game
JUPITER, Fla. — Step one in judging if Rafael Furcal will be ready for Opening Day starts Monday morning.
The veteran second baseman is being used as the designated hitter in a Minor League game at the Roger Dean Stadium complex.
Manager Mike Redmond said the team is looking to see how Furcal moves around before determining if he will be ready for the March 31 opener against the Rockies at Marlins Park.
Opening Day is a week away, and the second base situation is unclear.
There is a quiet optimism that Furcal will be in the lineup for Game One.
Also on Monday, Derek Dietrich will play the field in a Minors game. The 24-year-old broke his nose last Thursday, and he is playing with a protective mask, which he will only wear in the field.
Greg Dobbs (left quad) is playing first base in the Minors game.
Marcell Ozuna (left leg cramp) is feeling better, and is doing some baseball activities on Monday. Chances are Ozuna will be in action on Tuesday.
Giancarlo Stanton is in the starting lineup on Monday, a day after he was pegged on the meaty part of his right forearm by a Joe Nathan fastball against the Tigers in Lakeland. Stanton is fine.
Jose Fernandez (Tuesday), Nathan Eovaldi (Wednesday), Brad Hand (Thursday), Jacob Turner (Friday) and Tom Koehler (Saturday).
Hand will start against the Cardinals with Miami as the visiting team in Jupiter. The same day, in Jupiter, Henderson Alvarez will pitch in a Minor League game.
LINEUP vs. Nationals
1) Marisnick LF
2) Yelich CF
3) Stanton RF
4) Jones 1B
5) Saltalamacchia C
6) Bakers 2B
7) McGehee 3B
8) Hechavarria SS
9) Koehler P
Catcher Kyle Skipworth was reassigned to Minor League camp.
— Joe Frisaro