Results tagged ‘ Brian Barden ’

Odds and ends for Sunday

Some interesting items to digest after meeting with manager Fredi Gonzalez on Sunday morning.

* The manager pointed out that Gaby Sanchez, who has caught in the Minor Leagues, gives flexibility as an emergency third catcher.

Stopping short of declaring Sanchez as the starting first baseman, Gonzalez noted that if Sanchez is an emergency third catcher option, it frees up the team to use either John Baker or Ronny Paulino as a pinch-hitter.

* The Marlins feel their final bullpen slot will be filled from pitchers who are in camp. Recently, Gonzalez declared Leo Nunez, Dan Meyer, Renyel Pinto, Brian Sanches, Burke Badenhop and Jose Veras as frontrunners to make the squad. That leaves one spot open. If the Marlins take another long reliever, Rick VandenHurk is an option. Otherwise, Seth McClung, Scott Strickland and Tim Wood are choices.

* The projected bench is — backup catcher, Wes Helms, Emilio Bonifacio, Brian Barden and Mike Lamb, who also has caught in his career.

* Cody Ross on Sunday was the DH in a Minor League game for the second straight day. Ross had a good day, going 2-for-4 with a double and home run. The double was off Scott Strickland in the intrasquad scrimmage. The homer was off Jeff Allison. Ross is expected to play six innings in the outfield of a Minor League game.

— Joe Frisaro



Marlins-Red Sox lineups

The Marlins and Red Sox face off at 1:05 p.m. at City of Palms Park in Fort Myers. Marlins right-hander Chris Volstad will look to secure a rotation spot. The Red Sox are going with knuckleball specialist Tim Wakefield.







1) Chris Coghlan, LF

2) Cameron Maybin, CF

3) Dan Uggla, 2B

4) Jorge Cantu, 3B

5) John Baker, C

6) Mike Lamb, DH

7) Wes Helms, 1B

8) Bryan Petersen, RF

9) Brian Barden, SS







1) Jacoby Ellsbury, CF

2) Marco Scutaro, SS

3) Victor Martinez, C

4) Kevin Youkilis, 1B

5) David Ortiz, DH

6) J.D. Drew, RF

7) Adrian Beltre, 3B

8) Jeremy Hermida, LF

9) Bill Hall, 2B

— Joe Frisaro



Carroll strains left oblique

In batting practice, Brett Carroll felt some discomfort.

Not wanting to give up a start in right field, however, the Marlins outfielder stayed in the game. But after it was clear that something was wrong during his at-bat in the second inning, Carroll was replaced.

Shortly afterwards, the team announced that Carroll is hampered with a left oblique strain.

091209carroll1_t300.jpgThe injury actually occurred in batting practice before the Marlins lost, 4-1, to the Twins at Hammond Stadium on Wednesday afternoon.

“In my last round of BP, I just felt a little aching,” Carroll said. “My first swing of my first at-bat, I fouled the ball off and I didn’t feel right.”

Carroll ended up striking out, and before the bottom of the second inning started, Bryan Petersen went to right field.

“I’d never experienced this before,” Carroll said. “I’ve never experienced an oblique. It’s mild. We’ll see. It’s one of those things I can’t control.”

With Opening Day slated for April 5, the timing of Carroll’s injury jeopardizes his chances of being on the team when camp concludes.

Carroll is in the mix for an outfield reserve job. A terrific defender, with one of the strongest outfield throwing arms in the game, Carroll has not been a lock to make the club.

For a while the team has considered carrying both Emilio Bonifacio and Brian Barden. Both are natural infielders who can play outfield. Bonifacio will make the team as a super utility player, capable of playing infield and center field.

Barden has enjoyed a strong Spring Training, and he is a candidate to be a backup infielder who also can play corner outfield.

Carroll, meanwhile, his batting .267 with three home runs and six RBIs in 30 Grapefruit League at-bats.

“It’s not near the rib, which is supposed to be ok,” Gonzalez said. “It’s still going to be a couple of days. I wouldn’t know until that thing settles down.”

— Joe Frisaro


Sunday Marlins-Nats lineups

Marlins Opening Day starter Josh Johnson will take the mound on Sunday, facing the Nationals in a 1:05 p.m. ET contest at Roger Dean Stadium.

The Marlins and Nationals squared off on Saturday in Viera, with Florida winning, 5-3. The Nationals are going with lefty John Lannan.








1) Willie Harris, RF   

spacecoast.jpg2) Adam Kennedy, 2B

3) Ian Desmond, SS

4) Chris Duncan, 1B

5) Ivan Rodriguez, C

6) Eric Bruntlett, 3B

7) Justin Maxwell, CF

8) Roger Bernadina, LF

9) Jonn Lannan, P









1) Brian Barden, LF

2) Cameron Maybin, CF

Roger%20Dean%20Stadium.jpg3) Hanley Ramirez, SS

4) Jorge Cantu, 3B

5) Dan Uggla, 2B

6) Ronny Paulino, C

7) Cody Ross, RF

8) Logan Morrison, 1B

9) Josh Johnson, P

— Joe Frisaro



Forecasting roster spots

Speculating on who will stay and go is part of the fun in Spring Training.

In Marlins camp, there are some interesting position battles going on, and as we head into the final two weeks, here are some things to follow.

Based on conversations and observations, it looks as if the backup position player spots are coming into focus.

barden.jpgObviously, until moves are official, anything can happen. But taking the temperature of the ballclub as of Saturday afternoon, it looks like the position players off the bench may be Ronny Paulino, Wes Helms, Emilio Bonifacio, Brian Barden and Mike Lamb.

The Marlins every day outfield, if healthy, is set. Unlike last year, when Jeremy Hermida was frequently removed for defensive reasons in the late innings, there may not be a need for a defensive outfield replacement. Chris Coghlan, Cameron Maybin and Cody Ross won’t be coming out of games because of their defense.

Bonifacio, meanwhile, can play center field, as well as infield. Cody Ross, who will play right field, also can move to center field, if needed.

Barden has been on the team’s radar for more than a year, and chances are good that he will break camp with the club. Now that they have him, he is a quality defensive infielder who can play shortstop, second and third base. On Sunday in Viera against the Nationals, he subbed in at third base.

Gaby Sanchez most likely will win the first base job. If in late innings, the Marlins take Sanchez, a rookie, out for whatever reasons, Jorge Cantu can slide from third base to first base. Barden could get playing time at third in that scenario. Helms, the primary pinch-hitter option, also could fill that role.

Defensively, Barden is very good. He may be this year’s version of Alfredo Amezaga, who is now with the Dodgers. 

Lamb, meanwhile, has the edge as the left-handed bat off the bench. In Spring Training, Lamb is 5-for-15, with a .375 on-base percentage. Lamb hasn’t struck out in Spring Training. To fill that lefty situational role, the Marlins are looking for someone who makes contact.

Primarily a first and third basemen, Lamb also could be the emergency third catcher.

It is looking like Jorge Jimenez, the Rule 5 claim who was dealt to Florida as part of the Matt Lindstrom trade, may not fit into the Marlins plans right now. If the Marlins indeed decide to keep Lamb, then Jimenez would likely be offered back to the Red Sox, his original team. Jimenez is 3-for-18 thus far.

Again, the team hasn’t officially made any final decisions, and jobs could still be won based on merit, or if there are injuries.

Typically, how players are used in these final two weeks will indicate what roles the club is considering. The Marlins soon will be looking to give their regulars more playing time, which limits opportunity for prospects who project to open in the Minor Leagues.

On Monday, the Marlins are off, and two starting pitching candidates are slated to throw in Minor League games on the back fields at Roger Dean Stadium — Andrew Miller and Clay Hensley.

— Joe Frisaro

(in photo, Brian Barden)




Marlins-Cardinals Friday lineups

The Marlins and Cardinals will square off yet again in Grapefruit League action action on Friday at Roger Dean Stadium in Jupiter.

The Marlins are the home team in the 1:05 p.m. ET start. The game was will be televised on Fox Sports Florida.







1) Skip Schumaker, 2B

2) Felipe Lopez, SS

3) Albert Pujols, 1B

4) Colby Rasmus, CF

5) Ryan Ludwick, RF

6) Yadier Molina, C

7) Joe Mather, LF

8) Donovan Solano, 3B

9) Chris Carpenter, P







1) Chris Coghlan, LF

2) Emilio Bonifacio, CF

3) Dan Uggla, 2B

4) Logan Morrison, 1B

5) Cody Ross, RF

6) Wes Helms, 3B

7) Brian Barden, SS

8) Brett Hayes, C

9) Anibal Sanchez, P

— Joe Frisaro



Lowell returning? Maybe not

Mention the name Mike Lowell, and there automatically is intrigue.

Raised in Miami, and one of the most popular Marlins ever, Lowell’s name has been floated in trade talks for months. To some degree, the Marlins have interest. The team had a scout on hand to watch Lowell recently, as he is recovering from injury with the Red Sox.

mike-lowell-on-rt.jpgThe question is how much interest do the Marlins have.

There are strong indications, the level isn’t that strong at this point. From what the 36-year-old third baseman has shown is he is a ways from physically being his old self.

The Marlins are in no rush to part with a prospect or more to bring Lowell back. In fact, there may not be a fit, even though he is getting some work at first base.

Gaby Sanchez appears to be the front runner to being the Marlins first baseman. But it is too early to count out Logan Morrison.

Lowell would provide leadership. Bringing him back would be popular. For now, based on what the veteran has shown, the team would need to see more before making a trade happen.

The Marlins are in the process of figuring out their infield, and reserves. In the mix are Rule 5 pick Jorge Jimenez, who may wind up playing third if he makes the club. Jimenez’s strong arm and solid fielding have stood out.

So if Sanchez or Morrison aren’t at first, Cantu may wind up there.

There also are strong indications that Brian Barden will make the club as a utility infielder. Emilio Bonifacio also is expected to make the team.

— Joe Frisaro


Hensley agrees, four Minor Leaguers sign

The Marlins on Monday reached agreement on a Minor League deal with right-hander Clay Hensley, who was 8-4 with a 3.24 ERA at Triple-A New Orleans this year.

Additionally, the club signed four players to Minor League contracts with Spring Training invitations. Infielders Brian Barden and Donnie Murphy signed, as did right-handers Scott Strickland and Matt Peterson.

Hensley has 106 games of big league experience. His last stint in the Majors was in 2008 with the Padres. The 30-year-old right-hander opened this year with Houston’s Round Rock Triple-A team, before he was picked up by the Marlins. He made 19 starts at New Orleans.

Barden, 28, appeared in 52 games for the Cardinals in 2009, and he added 61 games at Triple-A Memphis. He’s seen action in 84 big league games. He can play all four infield positions. Murphy also is a versatile infielder who has played second base, shortstop and third base. The 26-year-old broke in with the Royals in 2004.

Strickland, 33, last pitched in the big leagues with Houston in 2005, and he has 236 games of experience. He spent 2009 pitching for Triple-A Albuquerque in the Dodgers’ system, where he made 50 relief appearances. He had a 2.98 ERA.

Peterson is a 27-year-old who has never pitched in the big leagues. The right-hander was with Double-A Jacksonville, where he logged 56 games.

— Joe Frisaro